Dear Football Mom,
Our son is a senior in a California high school. I found you under a Google search, Football Mom, and saw your website and column. Very interesting and really like the content. I have a question: Said son is a quarterback and is being recruited from several colleges on the East coast. He has always wanted to play for our #### University here, and they have offered him a scholarship. However, to be blunt, our state is in bad shape. My husband and I are both from here. Our families are here. We reared our two children here. But because of many horrible politicians making bad choices for us, we are looking to leave a state we once loved dearly. Are we wrong for encouraging our son to choose an East coast college so we can go ahead and move without feeling guilty of leaving family? He is open to it, but that wasn’t his childhood dream. I’m asking for your honest opinion.
I can only share honest opinions … it’s very humid here! That’s something you don’t have to put up with in CA.
All kidding aside, that is some loaded question. I reckon as long as we’re being blunt, you’re right: your state was one of the most gorgeous states in the union, until …
As far as I know, you can still leave any state whenever you want, including CA. But I see where you’re going with this. If your son chooses a college in California, y’all want to stay and see him play. If he chooses a college on the East coast, you want to move sooner than later so y’all can watch him play. How blessed you are to have choices like that. Most folks and parents of athletes’ don’t have nearly the luxury.
My first suggestion: make sure your son chooses the college he wants to attend. Provided he indeed has choices, allow him to figure it out. Give him some space. If he happens to choose a California college, be sure to swallow a big gulp of itching to move and support his decision. After all, your family can move East later or now, depending on your financial means to travel for his collegiate games, if you choose to watch him play.
Second suggestion: make sure he is wanted wherever that may be. For instance, you stated he’d already been offered a few scholarships in CA. Is the same true of an East college program as well, or are they still on the flattering front? Before y’all go rooting up your entire household and haul everyone East, make sure your son has a solid offer from that East coast college, i.e. an offer in writing. Things can get mighty squirrely just days before signing day. Gather your nuts … in other words, all the information you can before he makes his final decision.
Third suggestion: chill out. Things have a way of coming together the way they are supposed to. And if y’all happen to come East, bring lots of hair spray and gnat repellant!
Ironically, just a few weeks after I received the above question, I was contacted by ABC-Disney’s Tameron Hall Show to discuss the passing of the recent law “pay to play” in California. The two are really not connected, but I thought it was right serendipitous for me to focus on CA answering this question, and the law just past in the state for the last few weeks.
Quite an honor and very humbling that the producers of the show found me through my website, www.CandyAWestbrook.com. After several conversations with several producers, they flew me to New York City as a guest of the show to discuss the pros and cons this law will generate. Just so we are very clear here, I oppose this law, vehemently.
What happened to playing for the love of the game? And we wonder why the NCAA is a necessary evil. Now its role will be even bigger. There is no “fair” in football. Trust me, there really isn’t.
But let’s say for the sake of argument it could be fair. The pay to play wouldn’t create a hotdog effect on any players. Sure, I have land in the Okefenokee Swamp for sale that’s sure to go commercial and perfect for condos too. This law won’t go into effect for a few years. There is still time to get the worms back in the can!
The problem isn’t the pay out, the problem is the way it will be doled out. So, give the players a weekly stipend from the college program. Make it the same for every student athlete across the board, all sports, and for big schools, little schools. But that’s not what is happening. Individual athletes can get endorsement deals from sports companies and get paid zillions in college if this bill is enforced. That is not good. No way no how is it good for any “team.”
Stayed tuned. Questions are coming in about this law. It won’t be purty, but it will be brutally honest from this football mom. Count on it.