This is why I love sports.
It’s a Thursday night, just settled in after a day of work. I’m sitting in my apartment sipping on a cold drink waiting for Adam to come home. I’m watching ESPN because, you know, every girl watches ESPN on her free time, right? They begin telling a story about a Junior basketball player from Kansas University named Tri Robinson. I’ve heard of him. Good ballplayer. Definitely going to the NBA. But this is all I knew. What I didn’t know, though, was during his sophomore year, he lost his grandmother, grandfather and then mother all within a 25 day span. He didn’t have a father. All he had was his little sister whom his mother had with another man. She was only 5 or 6 at the time. And her father? He was in prison.
Within 3 and a half weeks, Tri Robinson’s life got pulled out from under him. He lost everything. A teen, all the way out in Kansas, a far cry from Washington DC where he was from, was all alone. He cried in his coach’s arms stating, “I have nothing left. I have nobody.” So what did he do? He woke up the next day with a new motivation. He wanted to play for his sister. Tri Robinson played in a home game the very next day after his mother passed. And he turned to basketball to get him through.
This is why I love sports. This is why I watch it. This is why I am a fan. This is why I played. And this is why sports is much bigger than the game itself. It’s an escape. It’s an oasis. Not just for the players involved, but for fans, as well. I don’t even know this guy. I’m not even a Kansas fan. I have Kentucky winning the NCAA Championship. But this ESPN segment had me sitting here crying, by myself, staring at the screen wanting to hug this kid. Because his life turned upside down. And yet he kept going. With the game of basketball.
It’s people like Tri Robinson who keep me going. I hear stories like that and I realize just how blessed and lucky I am. It’s people like him who I think about when I’m stuck in traffic angry thinking the world is against me because I might be late to work. He’s the guy I think about when I wake up in the morning and don’t even feel like getting out of bed. He’s the guy I think about when I sit with my wonderful family or friends and feel ungrateful. And now, he’s the guy I’m going to think about for the rest of the NCAA Championship. My bracket says Kentucky. My heart says Tri Robinson.
Sorry Kentucky, but I choose my heart.
“Here’s to you, Mrs. Robinson…”