Whitesburg KY

March Madness college basketball tournament

I’ve played sports most of my life over most of the world, and I try to watch all sports on TV from my home state of Kentucky. I love the basketball games and the women’s softball tournaments played by our Kentucky teams.

I was so amazed when a 20-year-old player from Louisville severely injured himself with a compound fracture and his lower leg, and how his coach and teammates reacted afterward. His coach, Rick Pitino, wiped tears in silence while other teammates wept openly in front of 24,000 shocked fans and a worldwide audience in attendance.

How did the injured young man react? Kevin Ware responded in a way that should stand as a model for all of us.

At this point, you might expect a 20-year-old to lie in shock after realizing that his dream of winning a national championship was over this year. Instead, he had the presence of mind to call his teammates to him before he was carried off on a stretcher, and he’s yelling, “Win the game! Win the game!”

And Louisville went on to win the best game I can ever remember watching in my lifetime. I also had tears in my eyes.

(Contributing writer Everett Vanover lives in Fairfield, Calif.)

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