You can score 20 points per game and be gay. You can kick 45-yard field goals and be gay. And I assure you that you can coach... and be gay.
I loved the sport, and I wanted to improve. Thinking of others' impressions only hampered that goal, I realized. All I needed to focus on was myself, and the other things -- the things out of my control -- would naturally play out.
As a whole, our youth sports system is broken. As the country's performance culture increasingly focuses on the development of elite athletes at the youth sports level, our kids are burning out emotionally at a greater clip and at an earlier age.
Although few defend Richie Incognito's alleged treatment of offensive line teammate, Jonathan Martin, some NFL players have blamed Martin for deserting his team and publicly criticizing a teammate.
As I watch the football players play their hearts out, I think about all the players who had done the same in the exact field years before. I think about the thousands of fans who pile into the bleachers year after year.
Trophies are handed out to our kids just for showing up. Games are played without scores so no one's feelings will be hurt.
The Atlantic article suggests that in place of high school sports, kids could play on club teams outside of school. But that misses the critical role that high school sports play in America's unparalleled sports infrastructure.
If I could change one thing alone, I would change this: Currently New York City Public School students have physical education twice a week.
Over the past three months, more than 700 violent crimes have occurred in the neighborhoods around Simeon. The coaching staff shelters the players and keeps them focused on basketball.
Although the LGBT sports equality movement progressed tremendously in recent years, most of the current media focus on straight-male allies as the MVPs in this movement.
Young athletes and their parents will inevitably be confronted with the decision and related pressures of whether to pursue club team participation and moreover, how to approach the inevitable decision of choosing a team.
It starts early in life in Pop Warner, AYSO and Little League. Athletes are taught to ignore pain, be stoic and not jeopardize their chance to play. Long-term health is an abstract concern, off the radar. Playing the next play becomes everything.
Just because dance is a sport does not mean that it isn't also an art. Through your choreography and your facial expressions you are able to completely change yourself into another character.
Last month's election was monumental for young people in California. Voters approved the first statewide tax increase since 2004, dodging $6 billion in cuts that would have crippled our public schools and universities.
Is there something you don't know how to do? Learn it. Is there something you fear? Overcome it. Is there something you see wrong in this world? Fix it.
I think, as a parent, it is up to us to educate our children the best we can and provide them with the most options possible while advocating for safety measures with our children's Pop Warner, middle school and high school sports associations.