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Random thoughts from this past week…

Posted on Thursday, January 18, 2018 at 8:02 am

In the past, former publishers and editors of “The Vandalia Leader” wrote editorials filled with several random thoughts on things they’ve experienced during a recent stretch of time.
It’s time for me to write a similar piece.
Man, it’s cold…
Kudos to our local school districts for making the recent decisions to either let school out early or close school due to incoming weather and/or frigid temperatures during this past week.
On Friday, school administrators made the decision to send students home early.
Meanwhile on Tuesday, the temperatures and weather factored in another school closing.
These are not easy decisions but all of our area district administrators should be commended for making the decisions as early as they have for the safety of their district’s students and patrons.
As for the frigid temperatures, as I type this editorial, my feet are freezing inside my shoes under my desk.
Might be time to purchase a small heater unit for me or steal Glee’s when she’s not looking. The first option is likely the best one on days like today.
Church Rally
My wife Kristy and I truly enjoyed the opportunity we had this past Saturday to take 10 youth to a Teen Bash at a church in Columbia, Mo.
There’s nothing quite like listening to 250-300 young people singing praises to an Almighty God who created us.
There were fun games, great preaching, and just a great fellowship time with the students the entire day. Memories and decisions were made and it was just a special day.
Watching NFL
The buzz on Monday from the NFL Playoffs involved the Minnesota Vikings scoring a touchdown on their final play while trailing to beat the New Orleans Saints to advance to the NFC Championship game.
For those of you who do not like football, I apologize for my need to voice my opinion on something from that game.
The game-winning play involved Vikings’ quarterback Case Keenum tossing a deep pass to Stefon Diggs, who is from Maryland.
Diggs went up for the catch, but while he did, Saints’ safety Marcus Williams lowered his head and launched his body as if he was trying to up-end the receiver.
Unfortunately for him, he completely missed Diggs, who regained his balance when he came down, turned, and scored a 61-yard walk-off touchdown. While I feel bad for Williams, his poor tackling technique is not only practiced by him.
For years now, I have seen guys just launch themselves into players carrying the ball trying to use their speed and strength to make a tackle.
All Williams had to do was wait a split second to make a tackle by wrapping his arms around Diggs and the game was over.
Hopefully, many players, young and old, will remember this play for years to come.
Tackling technique has really been overlooked by so many players and coaches in the 20 years since I’ve no longer been in pads.
When I was in high school, my coaches always preached “ear hole to belt buckle.”
This reminded me that I needed to come in low, put my head across the player’s body as the ear hole of my helmet should be about waist high, and I can make a solid tackle every time when wrapping the player up with my arms. This just drives me nuts to see players tackle up high, they don’t use their arms, or just choose to launch themselves as a missile with no clear lock on their target. I hope the Indians football players saw this Vikings-Saints play and learn from it. Football really is a game of fundamentals. Unfortunately, too many players are either not taught those any more or they are watching players on TV who are not using proper techniques themselves.