Monthly Archives: November 2011
Newsflash: Khan in (ball), Del Rio Out
In this week’s torah portion, Jakob dreams of a ladder to heaven on which angels ascend and descend. God promises to be with Jacob wherever he goes, to give the land to his descendants and to bless that earth as well. In response, Genesis 28:20-22 states that Jacob vowed that if God would stay with him, give him bread and clothing, and return him to his father’s house in peace, then God would be his god, the stone pillar would be God’s house, and he would give God a tenth of what he received.
Back in 2003, it seemed like a match made in heaven. Jack Del Rio (his last name meaning “of the river”) would lead JACKsonville, the RIVERcity, to the promised land. In many ways, however, Jack del Rio is Jakob. Living a dream of being an NFL Head Coach, he envisioned a ladder in which the only place to go was up. As the biblical narrative goes, even the angels descended the ladder. Amidst the bumpy up and down seasons, it was up to Del Rio to play linebacker again, to spot HIMSELF on the ladder.
Two major issues have plagued Jack Del Rio’s coaching career, one a more recent phenomenon and the other a long term dilemma. The short term issue has been clock management in end of game situations. Del Rio has had the opportunity to call time out, survey the playing field, and make a well orchestrated play call. Del Rio was unable to figure out what he really had because he didn’t pause the game to take a deeper look. The long term issue is quite similar. Del Rio’s thoughts on quarterbacks often differed from the general public’s view (not always a bad thing). By not taking a deeper look, however, he released capable quarterbacks and switched starters, calling on unproven quarterbacks at the most inconvenient of times.
Jakob has the same issue in this week’s parasha. He lacks time management skills, agreeing to 7 yr contracts with Laban to work for his marriages to Rachel and Leah. Taking a deeper look would’ve resulted in Jakob figuring out he was going to marry the wrong woman in the first place. One lesson this torah portion teaches is that we all should take a deeper look sometime.
So am I making Jakob out to be the bad guy (he did just finish up tricking his father/brother out of a birthright too)? Not necessarily. We return to those opening verses. There is a partnership made between God (owner) and Jakob. Jakob will serve with distinction (and give 1/10 of this salary to charity) if God takes care of him. Did the general manager supply Jack Del Rio with all that he would need for a winner?
As rumors fly about the selling of Wayne Weaver’s majority share of the team, may our ownership supply our future coaches with the resources- players, personnel, etc, to reach the top of the ladder. I hope that the verses ring true that Jakob’s descendents (hopefully 1st generation) will reach the promised land. Yes we (Shahid) Khan!!
A quick thought on Parshat Vayeira and the Cubs Managerial search.
Vayeira has a lot of meat to it, but the opening story is that of 3 men visiting Abraham and Sarah to share the news that Sarah will have a child in the coming year. The Talmud identifies these three “Angels” as Gabriel, Raphael, and Michael.
These three angels are like 3 coaching candidates vying for the open Cubs managerial job. The Boston Globe’s Peter Abraham (coincidence?) reports that the Cubs will be interviewing Pete Mackanin, Dale Sveum, and have interest in Mike Maddux. Thats Michael Maddux, the only match of the three “visitors” and the only one who coaches in the same division/league as the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. Just saying….