While watching CNN to stay afloat on current events, I focused my eye on the news feed that was at the bottom of the screen, and what I saw next disappointed me. The headline read, “T.O. late on child support, could face jail time…”
As a sports fan, you hate to see an athlete with superior talent end his career in that way — always remembered for being a “cancer” in the locker room and not a leader, but that has been the case for Terrell Owens.
Throughout the era of astronomical contracts and endorsements, athletes today have more money and more problems. Money doesn’t grow on trees, but yet athletes spend foolishly as if it did, because they never had anything else. Also, is the faulty loyalty from associates who want to capitalize on their wealth. This is what William Rhoden calls a, “40 million dollar slave.”
It has been the same story for Terrell Owens, since he’s been out of the league, and it is getting worse. How can you make multiple millions of dollars over the course of your career, but can’t pay your bills? I’ll tell you how: he has had money stolen from him by close acquaintances and business partners, bad investments, and having kids by multiple women.
Like Allen Iverson, Antoine Walker, and Mike Tyson, T.O. has tried to make an attempt at a comeback for that final elusive contract to help get him back on his feet and play at top level again. This year, T.O. has had to face the reality that his football career is over and it is time to move on. Teams are building their franchises with character athletes, who have great talent, and don’t want an aged veteran who will not be a good teammate, or hurt the team by running their mouth.
Athletes like T.O. never think about the end. Stephen Covey famously said, “Begin with the end in mind,” but for athletes the moment is greater than the end. When athletes make wise decisions and prepare for their future, they won’t have to worry about chasing money, the money will chase them. For some, change doesn’t happen until you hit rock bottom, and T.O. has knocked on the door and it’s swung wide open. If these life woes don’t change him, they will break him. This recent struggle would break anybody in his position, but only he can get up and fix it. So T.O., GET UP AND MAN UP!
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