There has been a lot of talk on the airwaves about Willis McGahee’s comments on Sporting News Radio concerning the Baltimore Ravens coaching staff. For those that missed it, here’s what he said:
“I tried to do something different this year. They wanted me to come in lighter and I tried to come in lighter, so I relaxed on the weights because the more weights I lift the heavier I get… so I relaxed on that and just tried to work on conditioning, but it didn’t work out so well this year. So I’m just going go ahead and do what I’ve been doing for the past couple of years and just work out and be Willis McGahee. I tried to be someone else’s running back this year and it didn’t work out…I don’t know what this offseason is going to bring. It’s been a crazy year for me with the talks of me not being there next year but regardless, I’m just going to go out there and play for me… I can’t play for nobody else but me.”
What did he say that deserves this kind of media attention? You would think that the media would have more to write about during the playoffs than something as trivial as this.
Ok, so he said “I can’t play for nobody else but me.” Objectively, I can see how that could be misconstrued as Willis McGahee being a selfish player.
But who doesn’t play a sport for their own satisfaction? If you can name me one athlete who doesn’t take pride in their performance, I have some beach-front property I’d be willing to sell you.
Of course the team comes first…you also play for your teammates and I’m sure Willis knows that. But there is absolutely nothing wrong with him taking pride in his performance and playing for himself as well.
To equate this to an office setting – it’s like saying: “I work hard so I can make a name for myself in this company.” That doesn’t mean that you aren’t working hard for the benefit of your fellow co-workers as well.
WIllis McGahee’s comments have been blown way out of proportion. Maybe it’s because the Ravens are in the playoffs and maybe it’s because Willis has not performed up to expectations, both his and ours. But these comments seem rather harmless, and the media attention these comments have garnered is rather unnecessary.