For the Love of the Game

Introduction – Decisions, Decisions

Full Summary: Shelley Sinclair is on a mission to save the football team from another season of humiliation. She's a cheerleader who loves to play football. After many unsuccessful attempts to start a girl's team at her high school, she is given the chance to help coach the boys' football team. She's optimistic about it, but not everyone on the team is happy about it, especially the witty and arrogant captain of the team who seems to think they don't need a girl to tell them what to do.

I have twenty-four hours to make possibly one of the most difficult decisions ever.

I love being a cheerleader, don't get me wrong. It's an excuse to never miss an athletic event. But I think football is pretty much the best sport around. Too bad they don't let girls play. Everyone at school knows I love football. Sophomore year I tried to start a girl's powderpuff team. As my luck would have it, it was a no-go because no one else wanted to play. So when my school's athletic director asked me to help coach our football team, I was ecstatic. If I can't play I might as well teach those idiots how to play football, right?

And then I remembered I was supposed to be cheer captain next year. Even though football is only a fall season sport, I can't do both because they'll both be really time consuming. So I have to choose which one I'd rather do.

So maybe it seems like a trivial choice to you. But for me, it's as important as choosing what college I'm going to. It could affect the rest of my life. Do cheer, the activity I love more than anything, or help coach the football team that hasn't won more than two games in the past seven years?

It's not that we're a bad team. It's more like...other schools' teams are better than ours. So they always beat us at the game.

The game. There's the rush of adrenaline I get whenever I cheer at a football game - even if we're obviously going to lose. Standing on the sidelines, I'm so close that I'm practically in the action. Sure, you can smell the sweat. You can hear the whispers, the cheers of the spectators. But there is nothing quite like being in the action. And to be able to be an assistant coach...god, that's like a dream come true.

It all comes down to this: cheer or football?

I think the real question is: Who needs me more?