The Players' Tribune has launched a special series called "Letter to My Younger Self," in which athletes reflect on the most important lessons they have learned on and off the playing field. The most recent letter comes from San Antonio Spurs Hall of Famer and Navy basketball alumnus David Robinson, and let's just say this is a must-read.
The lengthy letter covers Robinson's time at the Naval Academy, his childhood, his idols (his grandfather and father), his time with the Spurs and beyond, as told by Robinson, of course.
Photos of Robinson's past are inserted along the way.
The letter was posted the day before Thanksgiving, very appropriate timing.
Here are some highlight quotes:
"I want you to think about your grandfather's integrity and grit when you're staring at the ceiling of your barracks room, but I also want you to think a little deeper. You need to learn a practical lesson. Grit alone is not going to save you from sinking."
"Your father is very demanding of you (actually, a lot like a coach you're going to have in the future by the name of Larry Brown, but that's a story for another time.) But the reason he's so demanding is because he's preparing you for the real world. He's not just giving you the tools to excel in school and eventually choose where you'll go to college, he's also showing you how to succeed in your life after basketball."
"Your peers will respect you for your integrity and character, not your possessions. What are you gonna do anyway, drive a Ferrari around the naval base? How is that going to help anyone?"
"And when you get that signing bonus, don't start thinking about all the things you can do with $1 million. Instead, think about all the things your grandfather did with $100."
-- Courtney Schellin