SAN ANGELO, Texas — The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic is forcing high school sports programs around the nation to adjust.
For the Brady Bulldogs, that means helping one another around the community and staying positive.
“If I had a message to tell people it would be hope and to choose faith over fear and know that this too shall pass,” Brady Athletic Director Shay Easterwood said.
Once a week Easterwood, who also serves as Brady’s head football coach, sends his teams and members of the community leadership lessons to help keep the town in positive spirits. Brady is a member of small-town America with a population of 5,298 people (2017).
The leadership lessons are short six to 10-minute videos followed by a questionnaire. They’re meant to encourage discussion and are available to everyone on Brady Athletics‘ Facebook page and the official Brady Athletics website.
“Any tool we can use to serve our community,” Easterwood said. “Each day we have a choice as to how we respond. We could respond in a negative way and say ‘man, everything’s against us’ or we can respond in a positive way and look for the joy and all the things in the adversity we face each and every day.”
One of the readings Easterwood mentioned was The Coffee Bean, which is written by Damon West and Jon Gordon. The book teaches readers how to transform their environment, overcome challenges and create positive change.
“This is not a school thing or a community of Brady thing or San Angelo or anything,” Easterwood said. “It’s a United States, it’s a worldwide pandemic. Through Stephen Mackey’s Two Words and through different leadership lessons and styles through reading books and all that kinds of stuff. It’s very applicable during this time to everyone.”
Easterwood explained that the COVID-19 pandemic has given Brady Athletics a chance to take a step back and reevaluate life’s true purpose through scripture and literature.
“Everything is going so fast in life that sometimes… I wouldn’t say neglecting it, but we would hit these leadership lessons maybe once a week, once every other week or we would just talk briefly about whatever that lesson may be,” Easterwood said. “Now because of COVID-19 we’ve been able to do that.”
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