Chapter 34: RITES OF PASSAGE – ROOKIE: Surviving Your Freshman Year of College Soccer
As a college rookie, you’re a mule, particularly during preseason. You’ll be asked to do more than your fair share of picking up cones and bagging balls and moving goals. Why? Because you’re a rookie and being a mule is just a rite of passage that all rookies must endure. Every player before you has gone through it and a year later, you’ll enjoy watching other rookies go through it too.
A surefire way to end up ostracized from your team is to skate these duties. It may seem silly or stupid to you, but to the players ahead of you, it is not. They served their time and they expect you to also serve yours. And your fellow rookies, well, they won’t appreciate your disappearing act when it’s time to do a little dirty work. Trust me, you’re way better off just serving your time with a smile on your face than by butting heads with the system.
And since you have to endure these rites of passage anyway, you may as well use them to your advantage. Instead of just tolerating them, attack them! Do them with enthusiasm! Don’t just pick up the cones; pick them up with gusto! Be the leader who gets the other rookies on board when it’s time to do the chores. Your enthusiasm will be contagious, which will make the work more enjoyable. Plus, it will help establish you as a leader, and believe me, your coach will notice.
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