When the world thinks about sports, they think about the athletes and the coaches. But there are so many people who play an essential role in making our Friday night or Saturday entertainment possible. So from one piece of the sports puzzle that’s used to going unseen to the masses, I am thankful for you.
For the better part of their entire lives, you’ve been sacrificing your nights, weekends, and any free time supporting your child chasing their dreams and aspirations. You are such a big piece; it can also become part of your identity. I might know a thing or two about that. I’m thankful for you.
Your love of the game and support for the team literally make it all happen. We might joke from time to time about just how passionate you feel about the plays called (or not called) and the final score, but we need you in the stands. I’m thankful for you.
Yes, you. You keep the rules and good conduct which are necessary for a safe and successful game. I know the coaches (and the fans…and myself) don’t always agree with you and may be extra passionate in this disagreement, but you are a crucial part. I am thankful for you.
The Support Staff
At the college level, there are so many people that come alongside the coaches and the players in order for them to achieve success on and off the field. I know there are just as many at all the other levels too.
Athletic trainers and Strength and Conditioning Coaches help the players maintain and optimize their physical health. Athletic trainers are in there before, during, and after, even the coaches making sure the players recover and recuperate. Strength and Conditioning Coaches make certain the athletes are in peak shape to handle the stress and strain from playing intensely. I’m thankful for you.
Academic Advisors and Guidance Counselors help keep the athletes on the right educational track and eligible to play. Since most players go on to do something other than athletics for their future job, this is the most important area. I’m thankful for you.
The Athletic Director oversees all operations and makes decisions off the field that affect everyone and everything. They lead and guide the entire culture of the school. I’m thankful for you.
The fundraising staff and Boosters raise money so the players have what they need, and the coaches have access to the many necessary resources. I’m thankful for you.
The band and cheerleaders, you complete us. There would be no hype or excitement without you all. I’m thankful for you.
The bus drivers, janitorial staff, and facilities workers don’t even want to imagine life without you. Let alone a game. I’m thankful for you.
And even after almost 20 years as a coach’s significant other, I know there are important people I’m forgetting. At every level, for every sport, many people play different but key roles that make the game happen and run smoothly. And behind all those roles are also spouses that have to compensate for their part in this puzzle.
So, I’m thankful for you too.