Thursday, February 8, 2024

Timely Words, Timeless Message: Thank you, Nick Bosa

Nick and his brother Joey Bosa attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida—one of the top ranked football high schools in the country. Had he gone to a Jesuit high school, I have to wonder: Would he have given his affective halftime speech in Latin?

How's that? As football fans know, the 49ers played a terrible first half against the Detroit Lions in the 
NFC Championship game. Trailing 24-7 at the half, one has to wonder what was said to spark the change that led to 27 unanswered points and the biggest comeback in NFC Championship history. Turns out there were a few—and the 2019 defensive rookie of the year / 2022 defensive player of the year gets credit for the ones that stuck.

According to NBC Sports BayArea, Bosa told his teammates to “do your job.” He said, “That’s all we need to do. Just do your one-11. In that first half, there were break downs. One guy each time. Obviously it’s hard for me to know exactly what’s going on, but you just got to do you job.”

Coming in to work on Monday morning, colleagues were relieved, exhausted but excited about the 34-31 win. At the lunch table, people kept talking about Bosa's message. Why? We get it. Wouldn't it be nice if everyone in the American workforce—teachers and students included—did the same?!

When it came time to share his speech in Sports and Spirituality, the motto of Jesuit High in Portland, Oregon came to mind. These three Latin words are etched into their cornerstone. They serve as the name of their alumni magazine. I would like to know how often coaches and athletes, teachers and students reference it: Age Quod Agis. Translation: Do what you are doing. 

Age Quod Agis might be even more important in 2024 than when the school was founded in 1956. The world of distractions has increased while our attention spans have not. To do what you are doing is a discipline. I could argue it is a spiritual discipline, too. 

In its most practical form, Age Quod Agis also means "do your job." Every player on the team has a specific role. Every position has its own demands and requirements. The QB need not do what the center does. The safety should not do what the defensive end is doing. However, sometimes, we feel like we have to do it all. Other times, it's easy to put our tasks onto someone else. No. Do what you are doing. Do your job. 

According to the LA Times, "rousing half-time speeches make a difference in a game’s outcome is a myth." I get it, but you and I probably name one, two or three instances when the legend stands tall. And I believe 49ers defensive end Nick Bosa gets credit for his valuable contributionHis words stuck because they were on point. That reminder was necessary. Those timely words emerge timeless. From the Roman Empire on...

Photo Credits
Nick then and now
Pillar (I took this photo!)

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