Some fans just don't understand

By Anthony Rhoads

Mike Reid played football at Penn State from 1966-69.

By the time he ended his collegiate career, the defensive tackle had earned just about every honor it was possible for him to receive: he was a consensus all-American, he won the Outland Trophy as the most outstanding interior lineman and in 1987, he was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.

Reid moved on to the professional ranks and played for the Cincinatti Bengals from 1970-74.

He could have played several more years in the National Football League but he did something very curious.

He quit playing football to devote more time to his music.

Reid became a respected singer/songwriter and penned many hits for other country music artists.

By the early 1990s , it was Reid's turn to become a country music star. In 1991, he even had a No. 1 single on the country charts, the song ?Walk on Faith.'

In addition to writing popular music, Reid also composed an opera.

Former Atlanta Falcons defensive end Tim Green was another pro athlete who delved into the arts. Green has written several books including a series of mystery novels.

Green not only had the audacity to write books but he also did a weekly commentary for National Public Radio on a variety of topics.


Athletes, especially football players, aren't supposed to have an affinity or talent for music or writing.

If they do have musical or literary talent, they shouldn't let anyone know about it because only wimps are into stuff like music and art.

What an embarrassment for an athlete to admit he is artistically talented.

I write that in jest, but sadly, there are some folks out there who actually have that attitude. According to some folks, people who are interested in the arts are wimps and nerds.

It's pretty evident that some people still have that kind of Neanderthal thinking. When you peruse various sports message boards, some sports fans continually have bad things to say about people who are in the band or who are involved in some other artistic or creative endeavor like drama.

Those kinds of attitudes reinforce the stereotype that sports fans and athletes are intolerant imbeciles who don't appreciate anything outside the realm of sports.

Sports should be one aspect of a well-rounded life.

While sports is a good thing to be interested in and to participate in, it should not be the end-all and be-all of existence.

Sports should be just one aspect of a well-rounded life because when you are focused on just one thing in life, you really miss out on the experience.

We, as human beings, have only one go-around at life and it should be lived to the fullest with a myriad of experiences.

Sports, art, music and literature all add to our life experiences and the talent it takes to participate in those endeavors should be appreciated.

Anthony Rhoads is a sports writer for The Daily. He can be reached at arhoads@news-daily.com