Elisha Shaw had the dream many young boys have– to play college football. His drive led him to become one of the nation’s top prospects as a defensive tackle. His senior year was to be a magical one; a year he would be playing his heart out every game while college scouts watched, but for Elisha Shaw, his senior year took a different route.
In just a second, his dream of playing college football came to a screeching halt. As Shaw made a tackle during summer practice before his senior season, he sustained a neck injury that would forever prevent him from playing the game he loved so much. During his previous three seasons of high school football, Shaw had become Georgia’s top DL and he had Alabama among his top choices. After Shaw’s injury, other coaches took their scholarship offers away, but Nick Saban had a different plan in mind.
Saban made a choice that would allow Shaw to attend the University of Alabama. Saban made the decision to offer Shaw a scholarship on medical exemption, meaning Shaw could get the education he’s always wanted while attending his dream university.
Saban has shown the country that what matters most in life doesn’t happen between the end zones of a football stadium; what matters most is doing the right thing — keeping a promise to a young man like Elisha Shaw. Although Shaw will not get the play college football, he will get to receive a college education.
For some, obstacles stop people from continuing on the path to success, but for people like Elisha Shaw, obstacles are used to create different paths to success.