Changing plans just part of life |

Changing plans just part of life

— The plan was simple.

After graduating from Steamboat Springs High School in 2003, Joel Adams was supposed to attend the University of Colorado where he would continue his alpine skiing career as a member of the Golden Buffaloes ski team.

But one of the first lessons Adams learned in college is life is full of twists.

Sure, he could have taken the easy road and followed the plan. He would have been a top skier for the school, and probably would have finished his college career with any number of accolades. But instead, Adams decided to take a chance and chase his childhood dream of playing football for the university.

He attended an open tryout for the football team a few weeks before the start of his sophomore year and discovered the road he decided to follow suddenly had a fork in it.

When he arrived at CU, skiing was the option, but after the tryout he was asked by football coaches to join the practice squad.

It would have been easier to say “no” and return to the path that had been laid out in front of him. Skiing represented the easier road that would also pay for his school.

But he didn’t have to think about it too long. Instead of following the easy path, Adams decided to follow the road of discovery.

Not only did he say yes to the practice squad, but also he brought his “A” game to every practice, making the most of every opportunity.

His attitude impressed the coaching staff, it impressed his teammates and it earned him a spot on the team.

It’s a story that seems to be ripped from a movie script such as “Rudy” or “Invincible.”

Adams tale is the type of story that brings tears to the eyes of true sports fans. It’s the story of an athlete chasing a childhood dream and somehow beating the odds.

Who knows if Adams will ever make the Buffaloes starting lineup? Sure, it would be nice, but it really doesn’t matter.

The fact that Adams was on the field as part of the University of Colorado’s special team squad last season and that he expected to play an even bigger role this year is a reason to celebrate.

His story is proof not every top college athlete comes from a major high school football program. It’s proof high school athletes, even those who are injured for most of their senior years, don’t have to sign with a college football program right out of high school. It’s proof hard work and desire still count for something in our world.

This story is inspirational because Adams proved that, in life, you don’t always have to follow the plan to find success.

It proves a good plan should be treated more like a guideline, because in the end, it’s the decisions we make that will really determine where we end up.

-To reach John F. Russell, call 871-4209

or e-mail

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