As you may remember from my previous message to you, I am a rabid Seattle Seahawk football fan. And when it comes to talking about the "referee calls" during Super Bowl XL, I am sorry but I just don't remember too many that I agree with. But there is ONE call that was made that I heartily applaud - that was three time Super Bowl MPV Joe Montana's decision to NOT attend the Super Bowl this year.
Joe has taken plenty of heat from the sports media for his decision. Virtually every sports commentator has publicly condemned his choice to stay home as either selfish or ungrateful to the NFL on his part. Also, an untrue rumor has made the rounds which says that he had demanded a $100,000 appearance fee from the NFL to show up for their pre-game celebration of past Super Bowl MVPs.
But the truth is that Joe Montana has set his life's priorities differently. In an interview with ESPN, Montana said, "I told them both (my sons) that I'd be there for their games and that we'd watch the Super Bowl together." And then he went on to explain what was behind this commitment. "When I was playing football I missed my two girls. They're in college now and they're gone. These boys are at an age right now at 16 and 13 that I want to be around. I don't want to miss them before they're gone."
Here is a guy who has it all. He has all the fame, success and money a man could ever want. But he admits that while he was pursuing his pro football career he missed out on something that can never be bought back or regained, his time with his daughters. He now has an opportunity to do things differently with his sons. And he is taking it, even amidst unfair criticism and personal attacks.
So Joe, I say, It seems to me that just as you called your audible plays at the line of scrimmage against many an opponent in the 80's and 90's, you still have the courage to make the right calls for your family. The calls you made back then won you some football games, but the calls you are making now, including the decision to skip this year's Super Bowl, are winning you something infinitely more important, the hearts of your sons. Super Bowls come and go, but what is written on the hearts of those we love remains forever. Way to go, Joe!