Without a doubt Season of Life, by Jeffrey Marx. should be required for all youth sports coaches and athletes and fathers for that matter. It’s an easy read, less than 200 pages, and emphasizes living life for others. A powerful life lesson through sports, where responsibility, empathy and integrity develop leadership in young men as a high school football team struggles through a season. A story about Servant leadership –where we forget about I and mine and instead focus on self-sacrifice for our team, our teammates and the greater good of our relationships through serving others.
Joe Ehrmann, a former NFL football star and volunteer coach for the Gilman High School football team, teaches his players the keys to successful defense: penetrate, pursue, punish, love. Love? A former captain of the Baltimore Colts and now an ordained minister, Ehrmann is serious about the game of football but even more serious about the purpose of life. Season of Life is his inspirational story as told by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Jeffrey Marx, who was a ballboy for the Colts when he first met Ehrmann.
Ehrmann now devotes his life to teaching young men a whole new meaning of masculinity. He teaches the boys at Gilman the precepts of his Building Men for Others program: Being a man means emphasizing relationships and having a cause bigger than yourself. It means accepting responsibility and leading courageously. It means that empathy, integrity, and living a life of service to others are more important than points on a scoreboard.
Decades after he first met Ehrmann, Jeffrey Marx renewed their friendship and watched his childhood hero putting his principles into action. While chronicling a season with the Gilman Greyhounds, Marx witnessed the most extraordinary sports program he’d ever seen, where
players say “I love you” to each other and coaches profess their love for their players. Off the field Marx sat with Ehrmann and absorbed life lessons that led him to reexamine his own unresolved relationship with his father.
Season of Life is a book about what it means to be a man of substance and impact. It is a moving story that will resonate with athletes, coaches, parents — anyone struggling to make the right
choices in life.