Sunday, November 18, 2007

Quiet Strength

Quiet Strength by Tony Dungy

Dungy's memoir describes his life including personal elements, football, and faith. Leading the Colts to a Super Bowl victory during the 06-07 season was simply a stop along the path for him. He continuously emphasizes throughout the book that while he enjoys football tremendously that it is ultimately just a game. He gives credit to his siblings performing long term important roles such one who is a nurse in a correctional facility as well as one who is a perinatologist and helps women through pregnancies.

Dungy grew up playing football and basketball in various places throughout Michigan with 3 siblings and parents who were both educators. He went on to play football at the University of Minnesota where he attained great success. After graduating, he played several seasons in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers and San Francisco 49ers. During his time with the Steelers, he became the last player to both intercept a pass and throw an interception in a game when he came in as the 4th string backup quarterback, his normal position being defensive back.

After retirement, he began his coaching career first with the University of Minnesota then being called back to the NFL as a coach with the Steelers. He eventually became the defensive coordinator with the Steelers before moving on to the Kansas City Chiefs as a defensive backs coach. Following his tenure with Kansas City, he moved on to a defensive coordinator position with the Minnesota Vikings before his first head coach job in 1996 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

He truly built a team and community support while with Tampa Bay. They went from arguably one of the worst franchises in the NFL to a league leader during his time there. After his time with the Bucs ended, he went on to the Indianapolis Colts where he won his first Super Bowl.

Outside of football, Dungy is very involved with community organizations including
Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Athletes in Action, the Boys and Girls Club, Prison Crusade Ministry, and Family First. He is very upfront and open about his faith and does not hide his walk with Christ. He has 5 children and encourages his players and coaches in spending time with their families as well.

During the 2005 season, one of his sons committed suicide and both the Tampa Bay and Indianapolis communities rallied around their family to really support and lift them up during this difficult time. Dungy's composure and decision to carry on coaching football following this tragedy was arrived at through prayer and his close walk with God.

All throughout the book he provides great examples of leadership, character, wisdom, and overall outlook on life. It's the type of book that could be used at the collegiate level for lessons on management and leading a team. I highly recommend Quiet Strength to the football fan as well as anyone interested in a great book about an all around quality guy.

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