many times have you heard this from a coach who has selected his team?
"I'm sorry, you're just not big enough. You're not tall enough. You're
not strong enough. Maybe next year when you grow a bit?"
Nothing frosts me more than that type of thinking from a coach who
stares at a clipboard and picks a player based on height and weight.
There is no instrument to measure heart, courage and guts, and quite
often the players who possess these traits are the players that "aren't
Let me trot out a few guys who were told, when they were your age ,that
they "weren't big enough." Let's start with Dustin Pedroia who told me
once that throughout his whole life he was told that "he wasn't tall
enough or fast enough." All he did was win the Rookie of the Year Award
in 2007 and the MVP Award in 2008. How about Brian Gionta, at 5'7" the shortest player in the NHL. He wears
size 5 skates but he also wears the "C" on his sweater as captain of
the fabled Montreal Canadiens.
Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning is 36 years old and has been
hearing the same garbage about his height since his bantam days. Listed
at 5'8", Martin went undrafted by the NHL after graduating from
Vermont. "Too small?" Not too small to lead the NHL in scoring in 2004,
win the MVP award and a Stanley Cup as well.
Brad Marchand of the Bruins is listed at 5'9". "Throughout my hockey
career I constantly had to prove myself," said Marchand. In his rookie
season with the Bruins he scored 21 goals, added 19 assists while in
constant motion, harassing opponents. Marchand has been an integral part
of the Bruins success.
And finally we get to Wes Welker of the Patriots. In a sport littered
with 300 pounders, Welker plays as large as anyone in the NFL even if he
went undrafted. He was signed and cut by the Chargers, then signed by
the Dolphins where in one game he; caught a pass, returned a punt, a
kickoff, kicked a field goal, an extra point and even made a tackle.
Bill Bellichick never told Welker he was "too small." In his first three
seasons with the Patriots Welker caught 346 passes and made three Pro
You get my point. The next time someone questions your height, weight or
speed just smile and tell yourself you could be the next Pedroia,
Gionta, St. Louis, Marchand or Welker.