Pugh’s Views: My Compass Is Not Working

I have debated for most of my natural life that given the opportunity of having my very own forum to purge the inner-wovings of my cerebellum, I would create the greatest piece of writing since Ralphie from “The Christmas Story” penned his Hemmingwayesque homage to the Red Rider BB Gun. Instead, I’m going to give you memories of landfills and schoolgirl excitement drawn from airports being incorrectly marked. Isn’t this great already?

I thought Saturday would be the perfect day to start this journey with you given this is the day that I’m probably most excited about each and every week. Sometimes for no reason at all. Most times because Futbol/Football is hours away. Oh yeah, and going to the landfill.

Growing up in DeLand it’s the small things that count and packing the neighbors truck with “stuff” and heading to the landfill on Saturday Mornings was dang near an institution. (Of course it was usually at the crack of dawn and got to beyond nuisance status as a teenager.) I’d like to think of this weekly column as a mental landfill of sorts. Remember, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Ask Tiger Woods. *Ron Burgandy Voice*

So the High School Football All-Star Season is upon us and many of the local talent are getting their names plastered on the walls of college recruiting war rooms everywhere. Alonso’s own Anthony Chickillo picked himself up an MVP Trophy at the Under Armour American Game in St. Petersburg this past Wednesday. His current commitment is to “The U,” but my gut says Randy Shannon recruited him on the basis of legacy. I don’t think he’s a Randy Shannon player, but I think he’s precisely an Al Golden kind of guy. Just remains to be seen since Will Muschamp has made Mr. Chickillo giddy in his short-term dealings with the young man. Oh yeah, look for some fences to be mended between the folks in Coral Gables and South Tampa as well. Golden was teammates with Plant Coach TJ Lane at Penn State. The bitter taste in the mouths of many over the Robert Marve situation may once and for all be gone.

Speaking of Hogtown, (that’s Gainesville for you guys NOT in the know) the coming years of the rivalry between the Gators and the Seminoles are about to be the best they’ve ever been. Yes, better than the 90’s when the Ol’ Ball Coach didn’t get it done very much against Papa Bowden. Fisher v Muschamp will be “mus-see”.

There’s more than enough room for teams to get things done including USF, UCF, Miami, FIU, and beyond though. Dare I say it, this state may producing bigger and better talent than it ever has and won’t be falling off anytime in the near or distant future. Let’s remind ourselves of one very important thing before we move any further if you don’t mind.

I’ve seen what lies ahead from Duval to Dade County and all points between. There are kids that look like they should be opening up their membership card to AARP anyday now, but in the end they’re kids. Let’s remember to keep this in perspective. Hold kids accountable for what they SHOULD be held accountable for and keep it realistic. Don’t set a kid up to fail, that’s on the adult in my opinion. Too many times we don’t look at ourselves and see the amount of influence we actually have versus our “perceived” influence. These kids look up to us mentally while looking down at us physically. It’s powerful thing. Use it wisely.

I feel better. Enjoy your Weekend. I like the Saints, Jets, Ravens, and Eagles this weekend, and War Eagle on Monday. I also like Jimbo Fisher to leave Brian Kelly one simple word on his slimy little voicemail. BEATEMDOWN.