Monday, August 10, 2020

One Step At A Time

If there's a word that TigerBlog should be able to type without giving second thought, it would be "Princeton," right?

How many times has he written that word without giving it a thought, let alone a typo?

Princeton. Princeton. Princeton. There. That's three times. 

The word "Princeton" has been part of the password for this blog for awhile, and for some reason he just could never type it correctly when he was logging in. It's the only time that he struggled with it, in the password.

He put up with as long as he could, until now, when he's finally changed it. Why not? Life's too short to be frustrated by your log-in.

Now that he can easily get going, he'd like to talk about his Office of Athletic Communications colleagues Warren Croxton and Andrew Borders.  The two of them have just been dominant in the Ivy Step Challenge.

The event is essentially what you think it would be. 

All eight Ivy League campus recreation departments got together to create the challenge, which has been open to any students, staff, alums, basically anyone with an affiliation for that particular school.

The rules were simple. Participants simply had to track their steps and submit them at the end of each day. The school with the most total steps would be the winner.

The goal of course was to promote fitness. It did discriminate against TigerBlog, whose fitness comes from riding his bike.

That's okay. Warren and Andrew more than picked up the slack for the OAC.

In fact, on Day 3 (Saturday), they were 1-2 for Princeton in steps, with 51,059 for Warren and 46,260 for Andrew. With those two at the top of the leaderboard, Princeton started to build a big lead over Dartmouth and Brown.

The contest ended at 11:59 pm last night, and the official winners were to be announced early today. 

Of course, TB's competitive side loved to look at an Ivy League leaderboard, any leaderboard, and see Princeton in the No. 1 spot. 

And to have Warren and Andrew in the 1-2 spots? That made it even better.

The great thing about college sports is that there's something for everyone. If your thing is Power 5 football and basketball, that's great, but that's not all there is.

For TigerBlog, it's always been about the Ivy League, and to a certain extent, other similar leagues, where the difference between "student" and "athlete" isn't too great, with apologies to great number of Power 5 athletes who take the school part seriously. 

Of course, there will be no Ivy League athletics this fall due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Will there be any college sports, any college football? That remains to be seen, as even as the middle of August rolls around, there are more questions than answers.

The news for Princeton Friday was that no students would be on campus in the fall. It was another setback for the students, whose Princeton experience has already been quite disrupted in ways that nobody could possibly have ever imagined even six months ago. It was another brutal decision that had to be made by the administration, who has had to time and again now make those kinds of decisions that are the last thing they want to have to make.

Perhaps the best lesson here is from the Ivy Step Challenge. When the situation looks overwhelming, take it one step at a time.

There are better days ahead. And stay positive. 

That's certainly the message that has come from Ford Family Director of Athletics Mollie Marcoux Samaan through this trying time. Stay positive. 

It's obviously not easy. There are difficult choices that need to be made. The best-case scenarios right now aren't what anyone wants them to be.

Again, there are better days coming. And TB still has the same thought he's had this whole time, that there will come a time in the lives of everyone who has been a part of this when they will realize that they were tested and forced to respond, and that because of that they learned something important about life, and about themselves.

And there will be Ivy League athletics again. And the competition will be great.

For this weekend, though, it was Warren and Andrew in a walk. 

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