Dreams. Goals. Aspirations.
We are all familiar with these three ideas. From early childhood through the winter of our lives, we all strive to achieve certain personal conquests. Be it a humble accomplishment that only you could recognize or be it worldwide acknowledgement for an incredible feat, we all have something for which we are reaching. The carrot on a stick. The holy grail. The fire inside. Something always keeps us going.
For one undersized football player growing up in the 70s and 80s in northern Florida, all of those dreams, goals, and aspirations have come to fruition. The dream of playing professional football? Check. The goal of playing for the Dallas Cowboys? Check. The aspiration of being the greatest running back of all time? Check. And now that all of that has been accomplished, there was one last professional feat to be achieved: immortal enshrinement into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
That undersized football player who had to wait seemingly forever to have his name called in the 1990 NFL Draft and then went on to rewrite the record books has achieved all of these dreams. He has accomplished all of these goals. He has taken ownership of all of these aspirations. And now his entire career has culminated to the one moment so many dream of yet so few achieve.
Emmitt Smith has been inducted into the Hall of Fame.
From a card collector’s perspective, Emmitt’s career has culminated in his enshrinement in more ways than one. Not only has my lifelong favorite football player been recognized for all of his amazing feats, but now a small part of my Emmitt Smith card collection has been proven correct. I have a handfull of Hall of Fame-themed cards in my Emmitt collection, my favorite of which is shown below.
2000 Upper Deck Legends Canton Calling
Canton no longer needs to call.
I was fortunate to, more accidentally than anything, watch Emmitt’s induction on Saturday evening. I know these things are announced far ahead of time, but I did not realize it was this past weekend already. Luckily for me, my wife and I were channel surfing and nothing else was terribly appealing. For anyone not able to catch Emmitt’s acceptance speech, it can be viewed in its entirety here.
And for the record, I do not mean any disrespect to Russ Grimm, Rickey Jackson, Dick LeBeau, Floyd Little, John Randle, or Jerry Rice. But when your favorite athlete of all time gets inducted into the Hall of Fame, it’s a pretty cool thing.