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HIGH FIVES!

Walter

High Fives and congratulations to Pelham (Alabama) High School senior wrestler Hassan Hawthorne!

Hassan is 33-0 this year in the 145 pound division and is just several matches away from winning the state championship. CLICK HERE to read an article that was in USA Today – you’ll be glad you did.

If you have a question or comment, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396 or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

A LOOK BACK – JANUARY 26, 1983

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I graduated from law school in December 1982 and moved to Orlando, Florida where Robert Fraley and I started our own firm. On January 26th I spent the day in the library studying for the Florida bar exam and when I got in the car a guy on the radio made a statement that “it was a sad day in the world of sports”. Have you ever had a feeling that you knew what someone was going to say before they said it? Well, that’s how I felt. Coach Bryant had been admitted to the hospital for tests but from everyone I had talked to there were no major problems and he was going to be fine. But, as we all know now, he had a massive heart attack and passed away in Druid City Hospital in Tuscaloosa. Today is the 33rd anniversary of when that happened.

I had the privilege of playing for Coach Bryant for four years (1971-1974). Practices were hard – Coach would say if you’re gonna quit he’d rather you quit in practice than in the 4th quarter of the game. Coach wasn’t about promoting individuals, it was always about the team – when you win, there’s glory enough for everybody but when you lose, there’s glory for no one. And we had great success on the field too – we won 4 SEC Championships and 1 national championship (1973). During my 4 years in the NFL players and coaches would always want to talk about Coach Bryant and how it was to play for him. I could go on but to say it was a great experience would be a huge understatement.

Something that has always impressed me was how other coaches viewed Coach Bryant:

Joe Paterno – Penn State: “Even his peers in the coaching business felt in awe of him. He had such charisma. He was just a giant figure.”

Bob Devaney – Nebraska: “He was simply the best there ever was.”

John McKay – Southern Cal: “He wasn’t just a coach. He was the coach.”

Here’s a LINK to an article that was on al.com today with pictures and film from Coach Bryant’s funeral in 1983.

If you have a question or comment, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396 or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

Handling Tough Times

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I’m on the Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ board here in Birmingham and in one of our meetings last fall we were talking about potential speakers for our banquet and Tony Dungy’s name came up. I’ve always admired Coach Dungy, as a coach and for what he stands for, so after our meeting I Googled “Tony Dungy” and one of the first things I noticed was something called “Dungy’s Diaries”. It’s a blog where Coach Dungy shares some of his experiences. We’ve closed out 2015 and maybe things didn’t happen just like we wanted or expected them to. Here’s a link to thoughts from Coach Dungy on how he handled “tough times” during his career. I think it’s a message we can all learn from.

If you have a question or comment, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396 or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

Merry Christmas!

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Luke 2: 8 – 14:

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, “Don’t be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace, goodwill toward men!”

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

 

HIGH FIVES!

Walter

High Fives and congratulations to good friend and client Burton Burns, associate head coach/running backs coach at the University of Alabama!

burtonBurton and Connie

Burton and his wife Connie just returned to Tuscaloosa from a trip to New York City where they watched Derrick Henry win the 2015 Heisman Trophy. This December trip to the Big Apple is becoming a habit for Burton and Connie – in 2009 Alabama running back Mark Ingram was the first Alabama player to win the Heisman and in 2011 Trent Richardson finished 3rd in the Hesiman voting. Great job Coach!

burton with henryburton burns on field

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

 

MOUNT RUSHMORE OF COACHES

WoodenIf you were putting together a Mount Rushmore of coaches who would be your first two picks? If you know my background I’m sure you know who would be my # 1 (Coach Bryant) but let’s move on to my # 2 coach. Without any hesitation it would be former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden. Coach Wooden won 10 national championships in a 12-year period with the Bruins. WOW! Take a minute and read Rick Reilly’s article on Coach Wooden. A great coach and an even greater man! Click HERE.

 

 

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

HIGH FIVE!

HaaseWalter

 

 

HIGH FIVE to Coach Jerod Hasse for his personal donation to both basketball programs at UAB to help cover the players’ cost of living stipends.  You can read ESPN’s article HERE.

 

 

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (334-559-6906) or my office (205-874-0396) or you can email me at jshugart@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Rick Davis on his cell (561-662-3251) or his office (205-874-0368) or you can email him at rdavis@wallacejordan.com.

 

A LEADER’S “INNER CIRCLE”

A coach I represented who is now retired had a process he always followed whenever he was faced with making a major career decision.  Over the years he had assembled a handful of advisors who he would call to discuss each particular situation as it came up. This group was the coach’s “inner circle.”  It was made up of individuals who the coach had come to trust and respect – I was honored to be included. President Obama has cabinet members and advisors, and corporate executives have boards of directors.  In the same vein, I think it’s wise for a coach to have an “inner circle” that he can go to for advice. But be careful in putting that group together. Proverbs 13:20 says “the one who walks with the wise will become wise, but a companion of fools will suffer harm”. Click HERE for a great article by best-selling author Dr. John Maxwell with questions you should ask when forming your “inner circle”. FYI head coaches – these same questions can be asked when putting together your staff!

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

HIGH FIVES!

Walter

Bowden (2)

High Fives and a Happy Birthday to good friend and client Coach Bobby Bowden! Coach turned 86 on Sunday (November 8th). Thanks, Coach, for the impact you have had, and continue to have, on players, coaches, fans and the game. 

Bowden

 

Here’s a video (contact Rick Davis concerning the password) of a project we’ve been working on with Coach for the last year or so – this was in a foxhole in Bastogne, Belgium. Coach and our “team” are heading to France in a few weeks to wrap up filming. Stay tuned!!

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

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HIGH FIVES!

High Fives to Frank Beamer, Steve Spurrier and Jerry Kill!

Over the last few weeks we’ve had some great college football coaches announce their retirements – Coach Beamer started coaching in 1972, Coach Spurrier in 1978, and Coach Kill in 1985. Thank you gentlemen for your commitment and the positive influence you had on thousands of young men.

        Beamer           Spurrier

KillIn early December of 1982 I was finishing my last semester of law school in Birmingham when Coach Bryant announced that Alabama’s game against Illinois in the Liberty Bowl would be his last. I had taken a break from studying for finals and had stopped at a local diner to grab something to eat. Televisions were on and all three Birmingham stations were covering the press conference where Coach said “they (the players) deserved better coaching than they have been getting from me”. That’s who Coach Bryant was! That night when I got home I wrote a letter to Coach Bryant thanking him for the impact he had on me and the many life-lessons I had learned in the four year I played for him. The next morning I dropped the letter in the mail. About a week later I got a letter from the University of Alabama Athletics Department – above the return address was hand-written “Paul Bryant”. bryantpaulbio It was a letter from Coach Bryant that I feel sure he had typed himself. This was 1982, before computers, and it was typed on a typewriter – Coach had some typos that he had “backed-over” and changed. Coach thanked me for my letter and that it meant the world to he and Mary Harmon (his wife) to hear from “one of his boys”. In typical Coach Bryant fashion, he continued on and said that “he and Mary Harmon” wanted to thank me for allowing them to be a part of my life for those four years. Coach closed by wishing me good luck on my move to Orlando (where I was setting up a law practice with Robert Fraley) and he looked forward to sitting down and visiting with me the next time I was in Tuscaloosa.

That’s the person Coach Bryant was. With all the national media stampeding into Tuscaloosa to get interviews, Coach Bryant took the time to write a letter to a former player and tell that player how important that player was to Coach and Mary Harmon. Like Coach Beamer, Coach Spurrier and Coach Kill, Coach Bryant loved his players and spent his life working to help make us better football players and better men and, when it’s all said and done, that’s what really makes a coach great.

If you have any questions or comments, you can reach me on my cell (561-662-3251) or my office (205-874-0368) or you can email me at rdavis@wallacejordan.com or you can reach Jonathan Shugart on his cell (334-559-6906) or his office (205-874-0396) or you can email him at jshugart@wallacejordan.com.

 

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