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What Pro Football Can Learn from College Game

Jan 08, 2014 -- 8:45am

By: David Levin (@davidlevin71)

As an alum of Florida State, I was delirious with excitement when my Seminoles were able to come back and overcome Auburn 34-31. The fact the best team in the country struggled and faced adversity as head coach Jimbo Fisher spoke of after the game showed this was not an easy win, but possibly the most satisfying win of the season for the school.

Fisher was right on many accounts that big time players and big time teams fight through adversity and that big time players have big time moments on the game’s greatest stage.

Maybe NFL teams in general can learn something from the college game and the “students” who make it happen.

The game between FSU and Auburn was a back and forth slobber knocker that honestly, and yes I agree with Joe Cowart, the Seminoles had no business winning. Being down by 18 at half and coming back in the final five minutes of the fourth quarter proved the Seminoles were a team of great strength and destiny, not a team that, like in years past, blew it on bad calls and the belief the team had the game already won before the game started.

The pro game is so much different than college. The purity is missing, the pageantry flew away a long time ago. The darlings like Bart Starr and Johnny Unitas have been replaced by loud mouths and malcontents. There is a realism in the words Jameis Winston says and the smile he shows that makes you believe in what he says - not the hogwash and annoyance of Mike Wallace or Maurice Jones-Drew when they get paid to play a child’s game and complain when the cannot carry the ball or catch a pass.

Instead of college players having to attend the NFL symposium, maybe it should be the other way around. College players standing at the podium, teaching the daily lessons, NFL players taking notes and trying to pass the test.

There is a reality in the college game that is not found in the pros. Maybe it is lost in the fact the coach walking the sideline in college gets paid and the student athlete does not. Maybe it has something to do with the fact Jay Cutler makes $18 million a year and the coach who prepares him each season may make $2 million. There is not level playing field in that situation.

And if you really want to know why the NFL players need to take a lesson from the college ranks, look no further than celebrating a touchdown. College players act like school children who have never scored before. The pros do it so often, they are sick when they must celebrate and say, “look at me.”

Maybe, just maybe FSU and Auburn proved they are a better product. Then again both schools are asked to do anything more than they can.

Professional football players are asked, and most cannot answer the bell.

 

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