Thursday, June 26, 2008

Fresno State does what? Isn't that the "raisin capital of the world?"

Well, actually, no. Fresno is NOT the raisin capital of the world. Any hoser knows that title belongs to the sweet town of Selma, right off the old Highway 99 just south of Fresno!

But Fresno State, CSU Fresno, Fresno State University, FSU or whatever you want to call it did pull off the unimaginable on Wednesday night, thumping University of Georgia for its first ever national championship in a men's Division 1 sport. (They follow the women's softball team who won the title in 1998.)

Now I would be disingenius...err..umm...disambigous...uhh...I would be not telling the truth if I told you that I had been following Fresno State's baseball team all year, because I had not. I just picked up watching them after defeating Arizona State in a regional (which was a pretty big deal in Fresno--right up there where the time Carol Burnett filmed a movie downtown--a spoof actually--with the original title "Fresno"...I am sure all of us saw it...)and everyone back home was pretty happy about that win and advancing to the College World Series. Nice stuff. But who really cares about this stuff...any connection to business or life of anything else?

Well my young Jedi knights...may I offer a quote from ESPN?

"It goes to show you don't need that first-round draft pick on your team to win that national championship," left fielder Steve Susdorf said. "You need 25 guys. We were all committed to the team. No one was about himself."

Pretty nice stuff there from young Mr. Susdorf...and something overlooked by most managers and business leaders. Forget the Donald Trump nonsense where it all focuses upon an icon or powerful leader...the best firms, companies, organizations in any sector or space or those who have a "deep bench" and that bench is not full of "All-Stars" who are full of themselves and need all the attention shone upon them. Look for people to hire (or if you are looking for an employer or company, who is more concerned about excellence than who gets the credit) and hang out with them.

So who are the guys in the picture above? It doesn't matteer. Just a bunch of San Joaquin Valley kids who worked hard and succeeded, listening to a coach who was more concerned about hard work than accolades. This is a good reminder for us in business and education.

So I am going to go off into this day feeling pretty good about that little sheet of paper on my wall (well, it is kind of aged now, looking like the Declaration of Independence or the sales contract on an Edsel, turning brown with time) from Fresno State, especially after all the messes the men's basketball team and suits in the athletic department have created in the recent past.
And did I mention 48 hours from now I walk my little girl Rachel down the aisle? Yepper-Depper, that is correct, as she starts her life with a fine young man from Visalia/San Diego.
So I may need a couple of days off on writing (as if that is something new!) and will return as soon as I can. Have a great day!

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