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Culture Change Starts With Pipp!–Part 2

This is part 2 of 2.

When researching Gehrig and Pipp for this blog,  in the Mental Floss August 30th, 2016 article, “What Happened to Wally Pipp After He Was Benched?”, author Lucas Reilly allude to things athletes can draw from this cautionary tale. Reilly drew a couple of  parables to the reader from Pipp-Gehrig. One,  if a player gets into a lineup, don’t play poorly and if one is hitting pitches with a bat, wear a helmet.

While wearing a helmet is always a must.

The other point by Reilly I think somewhat misses or there is a more important parable to Gehrig and to fabric of American sports: don’t miss a day of work. That is a fundamental of staying employed with a company.

Get in every day you possibly can…Like my aforementioned female buddy does, every day. For WFT, that is where culture change starts: look at Rivera how he is leading by example for his team.

If one is there at the park, in the film sessions, hopefully they are less likely to be fired or cut. Oh,  how we hope for fairness in the workplace even in such a high level as the NFL.

Back to Haskins he wrote a beautiful article about year 1, seemed to know where goats like Brady and Brees are in terms of work ethic wise, already aspired and achieved personal aspirations by starting for Ohio State University..Yet, no matter what he is saying in locker rooms at halftime, how many comebacks he has made we are so easy to accept that he became lazy and uncommitted and lacked leadership.

Why are we so accepting that he got lazy after a taste of victory even if rumors and talk is rampant as such.  Because he is African American and young.

I assert we would be much less likely to accept this possible scenario (and stereotyping) of his totality from Bullis School to today if he was oh let us say Joe Burrow from LSU or Trevor Lawrence from Clemson. Or, rather a big winner and white.

White athletes have a more accepted value as blue collar especially if they make it at a powerhouse leading championship at the QB position.

Cam Newton and DeShaun Watson were ‘shocks’ to the NFL landscape when they played MVP-caliber. How about Lamar Jackson and his 5 tds….Jason Campbell won an undefeated championship at Auburn but never got accolades like Burrow or Luck or Wentz of being blue collar.  He was an after thought for the most part yet still last many seasons with Burgundy and gold—more than Cousins.

If there is a Mt Rushmore of explaining to foreigners American sports through legendary athletes who had tragic befall then Gehrig would be there alongside of Kobe, Ali and Pat Tillman…maybe our 4 American sports GOATS!  If we inserted a fifth, it would be fellow NYY Thurman Munson in my mind.

Author note not that anyone was asking to join Mt Rushmore this year or be inserted, right!

(He did survive Covid-19 which might be reason for placement, but I ask, would we include him with or without a mask, I say with).


The point being of this article that Gehrig who died at 37 made sure he gave his boss no reason to cut him by showing up everyday rain or shine. That fact he was as good as he was adding to the legend.

For American athletes the idea of being Pipped still is the case no matter what level or sport. There is always the possibility of this being your last game.

I said in part 1 that this is a cautionary tale: for Kyle Allen, actually any WFT QB or any WFT player or even any NFL QB or any NFL player you always have to go with the prerogative that you could be ‘Wally Pipped’ for any reason.

So, choose wisely.  I’m pretty sure all WFT QBs—no one called in sick for today’s film session—or was it yesterday. Or for the season, hmmm…guess you could ask Rivera or Snyder for an answer to attendance at the park.









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