Super bowlby Ted Rudow III,MA ( Tedr77 [at] aol.com )
Thursday Feb 3rd, 2011
March 14,1973 Berkeley Daily Gazette
Nick's Notebook-Nick Peters is the Baseball Hall of Fame for Journalism
Rudow turns off to sports
In a letter from Kingston at the start of the present basketball season, Ted emphatically explained how pressures endured during his Cal Career served as a catalyst for his dramatic dropout! "After I really,began to succeed on the freshman level",he wrote,
"I began to experience one of the strongest dilemas I had ever known. ."I felt pressures on many sides to really put out all my time and energy towards bccoming a basketball star in college and pressing to ward a pro career," Ted continued."On the other hand, something-deep williin my heart told me there was something wrong with all this. It kept telling me that all my desires to succeed in basketball were only vanity and only were pulling me farther and farther away from God. By the time school started in the fall of 1971, I had become convinced I should continue to play basketball as a service in God. But as soon as basketball practice happen"I Felt CAUGHT BETWEEN two worlds,he explained,"one with the teaching of Jesus in His commandment to love thy neighbor,while the other world I was told to gain a near-manical desire to win and to physically and spiritually punish my opponent to defeat.I began to really seek out God for the truth A about what I was doing.
"I then really began to see the tremendous hatred and violence that sports express," Rudow reasoned. "By February, I had become thoroughly disgusted with my hypocritical involvement with basketball. I also was sickened and frightend by the changes in those round me.
"I saw changes take place in a few of myteammates as they began to get publicity and promises of large sums of money in pro basketball.
Sports really foster the spirit of competition. It's the spirit of the world the "me first" spirit--do what's best for yourself, win no matter who you have to hurt or step on in order to get ahead of the next guy. That's the spirit of the world, which is just the opposite of what Jesus wants to teach people--to love your neighbor as yourself. Of course, some form of sports is fine. It's good exercise and can be good fun. But things in the world are so different, and when athletes get to the professional level where they're being paid to win, it gets extremely competitive. It becomes almost a life-and-death spirit. For example, the soccer players in the World Cup practically ran themselves to exhaustion, suffered injuries and bruises, and still kept playing, because they wanted to win no matter what it cost them physically.
It's a spiritual thing. It's the spirit of competition and pride, proving you're better than the other guy. They do it by sheer brawn, by their own strength, which really feeds their pride. It's their idea of success. Winning means success in the world, so to win is a very big motivator. It just seems to be sort of an instinct with men especially to want to compete and to win. When they watch the World Cup or other sports events, it's almost like an extension of those human desires to compete and win. That's why some people get so into it, because they can relate to that drive to compete. The physical exertion, and then finally the goal, is exhilarating for some people. But the world just loves it! See how this competitive sports thing has been the final stages of every great civilization and empire.
Ted Rudow III,MA