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A roundup of news on sporting events, people and places in Southeast Michigan by columnist Jim Evans.

Monday, February 11, 2013

No cheating heart for this student-athlete

Lance Armstrong’s coolly calculated cheating.
Titus Young’s juvenile behavior on the football field.
Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire and Alex Rodriguez. The Black Sox Scandal, the City College of New York basketball team point-shaving scandal, and Danny Almonte pitching in the Little League World Series when he was over-age at 14.
It’s pretty easy to get jaded in the world of sports. Until you run across the Michigan High School Athletic Association’s collaboration with Farm Bureau Insurance. This is the 24th year of Farm Bureau partnering with the state association to give $1,000 college scholarships to deserving student-athletes who represent their high schools in at least one sport in which the MHSAA sponsors a postseason tournament.
Royal Oak Shrine’s Connor Lockman is one of those scholarship winners.
Connor Lockman wins the 800-meter run at the Catholic League track and field championships last spring.
Lockman will earn his fourth letter in track and field this spring to go with four letters in soccer and one letter in cross country. He has served as a team captain in cross country as well as track and field. An all-league performer in all three sports, Lockman was the 800 meter champion the past two years. He has participated in the state meet in both cross country and track.
Lockman is also involved in ski club, backstage tech crew, the Winners Circle leadership forum, and Kairos. He has also been a youth soccer coach and referee and will attend Michigan State University to study pre-law.
A requirement for scholarship applicants is to write an essay.
A quote from Lockman’s essay follows: “Sportsmanship is turning for the finish line with one hundred meters left and not giving up.  Running toward the pain because you are the anchor of your 3,200-meter relay.  Second place would not matter than much for you because you have three more opportunities at a championship.  Your teammates may not though.  You run towards the pain for your teammates and that is true sportsmanship.”
Wright Wilson is Lockman’s cross country coach, as well as the track and field coach at Shrine.
"Connor is a very appropriate recipient for this award. He puts maximum effort into everything he does, whether in the class, on the track, on the course, or on the field. He's really adept at keeping everything in balance as well, and that indicates the type of person who is going to succeed in college. MHSAA has made a fine choice," said his coach.
"Connor sets the pace with his dedication to running, and he continues to challenge himself both in the workouts and in the meets. He's a dependable anchor for several of our relays and we are never out of the race if we are going to hand the baton to Connor," continued Wilson.
Barry Bonds flexing artificial muscles. Mark McGwire and Alex Rodriguez smacking balls into the stratosphere with pure deceit. A bum birth certificate from a 14-year-old kid. A Tour de France winner with more additives than a couple of Ball Park Franks.
Thank goodness for student-athletes like Connor Lockman. Thankfully, there are many more Lockmans than Armstrongs. They just get much less attention.


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