Guess how many players in this year’s Superbowl were 5-star recruits out of high school? As spring (theoretically) begins to thaw the rage among football fans is college recruiting of high school players. To give a frame of reference to the quality of players, high school players are now given a ranking based on their skill level, with 5 stars being the highest.
Although this could seem cruel, it’s a reflection of a society that loves to rank everything. We rank students based off their GPA. We rank careers based off net worth. So an article came out right before the Superbowl and blew me away when I came across it recently. Do you know how many 5-star players started in this year’s Superbowl? None. Zero. Neither team had a starter that was a 5-star recruit out of high school! In fact the average for both teams was between 2 and 3 stars. This year’s Superbowl teams were made up of players that were determined to be at best average in high school.
There are so many lessons to be learned from this, but let me give you three:
1. Don’t let someone else’s determination of you define who you are. If these football players stopped playing football because they were only a 2 or 3 star recruit out of high school, they would have missed out on playing a championship game for the ages. Don’t allow other’s determination of you to define who you are. God made you on purpose for a purpose.
2. Past success never guarantees future success. Just because 5-star players were great in high school didn’t mean they would be great at the college or professional level. If you rest on past successes, all you’ll have is memories of past successes. Each new challenge in life has to be conquered the hard way. There are no free passes.
3. Determination and perseverance are absolute keys to success. Many of the great stories of the NFL are the guys who were undrafted but walked on, earned a spot and made the team. Malcolm Butler, the hero of the Superbowl, was undrafted. The guys who started the Superbowl earned those spots because they worked harder than anyone else. They worked longer than anyone else. They persevered, and that counts for a whole lot more than their star count out of high school.
If you don’t feel like life has given you a 5-star rating, don’t give up. There still may be a Superbowl in your future!