This is a sample chapter from my currently untitled book designed to help LDS men live great lives.
I love football. Football is the greatest thing since sliced bread. Starting the last week in August when college football starts I spend all weekend, every weekend sitting on my sofa watching football. I divide my year into two parts. There’s the good part, from September through January. These are the months that have football. Then we have a funeral every year on the first weekend in February called the Super Bowl. While everybody else is happy during the Super Bowl I am sad because it is the last football game for almost 7 months. From the second week in February until the end of August is the bad part of the year, the time with no football.
The reason football is so great is because it mimics life. You can learn everything you need to know about life just by watching football. If you want to learn how to be successful in life just watch how winning teams go about winning in football.
There are two ways to win in football. The first way to win is get a superstar quarterback. Superstar quarterbacks go by the name of Montana, Young, Favre, Manning, Brady and Rogers. And that’s about it. There are rarely more than 2 or 3 superstar quarterbacks in the NFL at one time. You only get one of these guys by luck. There are lots of really good quarterbacks who people think are superstars, but they aren’t. These guys go by the name of Roethlisberger, Rivers, Aikman, Marino, Brees, Luck, etc. These guys are really good and put up big numbers, but if the team around them is only so so, they will not single handedly carry their team to success like the superstar quarterback. Right now in the NFL there are only 2 superstar quarterbacks Tom Brady and Aaron Rogers. Even Peyton Manning, due to old age, has dropped off significantly. It’s incredibly hard to get a superstar quarterback and you can’t count on your team having one.
The other way to win at football is to build a great defense, get a good quarterback and never turn the ball over. In football, teams win and lose based on which team turns the ball over. Fumbling the football and throwing interceptions kill teams. As a general rule, the team with the fewest turnovers wins. The other way to make sure your teams wins is to defend the Red Zone. The Red Zone is the last 20 yards from the 20 yard line to the goal line. If you can force the other team to kick field goals instead of scoring touchdowns, you increase your odds of winning dramatically. Winning in football comes down to not turning the ball over, forcing turnovers and defending the Red Zone.
In football, great defense trumps great offense. In the Super Bowl the #1 offense has played the #1 defense 6 times and the #1 defense has won 5 of those games. Even the best quarterbacks get flustered and struggle against the top defenses. Do you ever want to watch Tom Brady look like a mere mortal? Have him play against a great defense and the defense will make him have a difficult day. Even Tom Brady, who has won 4 Super Bowls and played in two others, wins the Super Bowl in years when his team’s defense is particularly good. Great quarterbacks are extremely rare and the vast majority of football teams won’t have one. The best way to win in football is with a great defense. Let’s look at how two of the best football coaches: Kyle Whittingham and Jim Harbaugh go about winning football games.
Kyle Whittingham is a treasure for the state of Utah. He has guided Utah into the Pac 12 conference where the Utah Utes play against power programs like USC, Stanford and Oregon every week. Utah is still a small state and despite what Utah and especially BYU fans believe, their football programs are not highly prestigious. Not having a lot of program prestige means your program will struggle to attract the best players. Because Utah and BYU aren’t highly prestigious, the best in state high school players leave the state. Utah still has a bit of negative social stigma in the rest of America and struggles to recruit top high school football players to Salt Lake City. One of Whittingham’s biggest struggles is filling out a roster with enough elite players to field a winning team in an elite conference.
What Whittingham does is he takes most of his best players and moves them to defense. Utah is able to recruit enough talent to field a top defense every year. After he puts his best players on defense he works on having a strong offensive line so he can have a strong running game. Whittingham’s strategy is to force turnovers and run the ball on offense. He figures that if his teams can play great defense, hold the ball on offense and don’t turn the ball over, he can usually field a winning team.
If Whittingham balanced out his team by keeping more of his top players on offense and weakening his defense what would happen is the offense would score a little bit more, but the defense would give up A LOT more points. Instead of having one great part of his team and one so so part of his team, his team would have two below average parts and his teams would LOSE a lot more. Instead of fielding a competitive team every year his team would be uncompetitive and he would get fired within 3 years.
What is interesting is when you look at Utah since moving to the Pac12 Utah’s winning and losing seasons always follow the turnover pattern. In Utah’s first year in the Pac12, Utah was able to field a team that went to a bowl game, but lost most of its Pac12 games. Utah’s quarterback got injured and the backup had to play most of the games. Overall this was a good season. In Utah’s second year in the Pac12, Utah’s quarterback got injured, his backup was poor and they finished the season playing a freshman quarterback. The team won 5 games. The quarterbacks kept turning the ball over and putting the defense in bad positions. Utah’s 3rd season in the Pac12 Utah played a sophomore quarterback who turned the ball over a lot and got injured halfway through the season. Utah’s turnovers crippled the team and the team only won 5 games.
In Utah’s 4th season in the Pac 12, Utah’s quarterback turned the ball over much less. He didn’t produce a ton, but he stopped turning the ball over. Utah found an NFL level running back and the defense had a lot of really good players. Utah ended up winning 9 games that year and it was a really good season. In Utah’s 5th season in the Pac 12 Utah had a great defense, an NFL running back and a great offensive line. Utah had a lot of great wins and finished the season with 10 wins. This was one of the great years in Utah football history. Utah very easily could have won even more, except their quarterback turned the ball over too much costing Utah 2 games. Utah’s NFL running back got injured at the end of the season putting too much focus on the quarterback and exposing his weaknesses.
Jim Harbaugh wins in the same manner only he is better at offense, making him possibly the best coach in all of football. Harbaugh has a reputation for being an offensive genius but he wins with great defense. Harbaugh’s teams always plays great defense, run the ball incredibly well, never turn the ball over and he runs a sophisticated offense. Harbaugh wins big at every level of football because his teams play perfect football.
At the start of the 2015 college football season Utah played Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan team. The game was one of the great games of the whole season. Utah and Michigan both played killer defense. They both made the other offenses struggle to score. The difference in the game was Utah’s NFL running back was able to score when Utah was able to get into the Red Zone. Utah was able to defend the Red Zone and forced 3 big turnovers. Both teams ground each other into the ground and showed they both were two of the top teams in the whole country.
The 2016 Super Bowl was a case study in defense. Denver came into the Super Bowl with the #1 defense in the NFL. Denver won all year on the strength of its defense. Denver’s offense was led by Peyton Manning. Manning had been a superstar quarterback for many years. However in the 2015-2016 season age finally caught up with Manning. He was no longer able to throw the ball downfield. Frankly due to his age and physical limitations, Manning was a below average quarterback.
Carolina came into the 2016 Super Bowl flying high. Carolina had a high flying offense led by Cam Newton, the NFL MVP. Carolina also brought a great defense. Carolina’s defense was famous for stopping all offenses they faced, constantly giving their offense great field position allowing Carolina’s offense to quickly wear down the opposing defense.
The 2016 Super Bowl was a matchup between two great defenses. The hype was all about the quarterbacks: Manning vs. Newton, but the game would be decided based on the defenses. Carolina was the favorite because their offense looked stronger than Denver’s offense. The game was a defensive slugfest. Denver’s offense had less than 200 yards all game. However Denver’s defense was able to force two big fumbles one of which Denver returned for a touchdown and the other gave Denver a very short field allowing Denver to score another touchdown. The whole Super Bowl was a case study on defense wins championships and turnovers kill. In spite of losing Carolina’s defense was every bit as dominant as Denver’s defense only they scored points with their defense.
In football the general rule is you win if you don’t beat yourself by turning the ball over and you force the other team to turn the ball over. The best way to win is NOT to lose. It’s funny because coaches get criticized a lot for playing not to lose, but playing not to lose is the best way to win. Go figure. Of course in college football and the NFL it’s a lot harder than it sounds because there are lots of very smart coaches and very elite athletes working extra hard to make you beat yourself and lose.
Football is great because it is just like life. In life most people fail because they beat themselves. Girls who overeat beat themselves because they make themselves obese and ugly. Overeating and becoming fat damages girls’ lives because a lot of a girl’s ability to find and attract a man comes from how she looks. Having a good man in their lives is the best way for women to find happiness and win at life. By damaging their looks fat girls make their lives much harder and ultimately their obesity ruins their lives. A girl overeating and making herself fat is a perfect case study in how people beat themselves in life.
Let’s take a look at a good example of how many men ruin their lives. Men who spend all their free time watching TV and playing video games beat themselves. To attract a desirable woman a man has to have lots of achievements and hobbies to attract a good woman. If a man spends all his time playing video games and watching TV he won’t develop himself. He won’t exercise enough, getting fat. He won’t do interesting things, won’t have interesting things to talk about and he won’t even be in position to meet girls. By playing too much video games and watching too much TV a man beats himself in life and makes his life horrible.
The modern world loves to teach us to beat ourselves in the game of life. The modern world tells us to eat too much, don’t exercise, watch TV all the time, worship celebrities, engage in degenerate behavior, etc. Look at a horrible trend in the modern world: fat acceptance. The modern world tells us that being fat is just as good as being fit. The world tells us we are all beautiful at any size. Of course it’s all nonsense. Being fat makes us unhealthy and unable to enjoy life. It makes us unappealing to the opposite sex. If we do what the world tells us to do we will end up with miserable lives. We will defeat ourselves and end up losing in life.
In life if you want to have a great life you have two choices. You can either be born super good looking, from a very rich family and have fame, this is the life equivalent of being a superstar quarterback. Or you can win by working hard, improving yourself and not screwing up. If you are reading this book, you aren’t like real life version of a superstar quarterback. Even men who have everything often struggle to live great lives. Many of them end up addicted to high end drugs and wasting all their money on hedonistic pleasure. You are better off building your life through effort and achievement. This is winning by defense. In real life winning with defense is better.
If you want to have a successful life what you need to do is look at everything that holds you back. Do you play too many video games? Does your college major set you up for a life of crappy jobs? Do you overeat? Do you dress poorly? Do you have bad social skills? These things are like turnovers in football. If you do these things too much it will beat you and you will lose making you have a bad life. To quickly improve your life, stop doing these things.
While you stop doing the things that defeat you, you need to start doing things that make your life better. Doing these things is like playing great defense and having a competent offence. Do you exercise enough? Do you do interesting activities to give you something interesting to talk about? Do you improve your social skills? Improving these skills is like playing defense and avoiding turnovers.
The way to win in life is to stop doing things that make you lose and start doing things that make you win. Your dating life is just one part of your life and it follows all parts of your life. Do the things that let you have a good dating life and stop doing things that make you have a bad dating life. Dating is just like football because if your dating life sucks it is probably because you are doing things that make your dating life suck. Stop doing these things, do things that make your dating life good and your life will get better. Stop defeating yourself and your life will improve.
In football there are really smart and talented people working extra hard to make you beat yourself. In real life the only person standing between you and the life you want to live is you. Most of the people telling you to live a bad life are cheap marketers who make money off of your misery. They aren’t nearly as scary as a 250 pound NFL linebacker. All you have to do is start doing the things that make your life better and avoid the things that make your life worse.