Not Marcus. Even saying, "Anyone but Marcus", doesn't even sound right. It isn't right. However, that is EXACTLY what I thought to myself and is how I felt when Marcus couldn't get back up. "Cmon Marcus, get up man, cmon, you got this!" Please GOD, help him up!
I cried, alot. This one hurt real bad and while 95% of Gamecock Nation will never meet Marcus or even the world for that matter, he has permanently carved his way into our hearts much like he has done on the football field, being the most prolific and outstanding running back I have ever seen. You see Marcus, you smile. You feel like he has been your brother your whole life and if someone else brings him up, you have no problem talking about him for hours. Reflecting on so many of his incredible games and what he has done for USC on and off the field. It is so much more than pride. It is adoration and without a doubt love.
Marcus changed Carolina Football. Marcus IS Carolina Football. His freshman year was insane to watch! I couldn't figure out why this kid couldn't be tackled or how he just kept on pushing and pushing. Imposing his will on opponents who outnumbered him 11 to 1 on every single play. That didn't matter at all, he embraced contact and was such a physical runner. A pure ground and pound running back that would give you every fingernail full of dirt and grass. Stretched out, battered and bruised, every part of his body to get one more inch and then you know what?
Marcus would get right back up and do it all over again, time after time after time. If you look up "Body Chill" in the dictionary, their is a picture of HIM. He is the AMBASSADOR of some of our greatest feelings and memories.
Now what? Will there be another run to the top of Stone Mountain? I don't think so. I think Mt. Everest would be more fitting for this one. You have to ask yourself and accept the fact that Marcus may never play football again. Wait a minute, all seriousness intact and selfishness aside. I want him to come back for HIM, I want him to set himself up for THE GREATEST story of all mankind, I want him to STICK to the script that I am SURE has him furiously hurt and in many doubts. I know he is angry, I know he is hurt far more than any of us. I know he can't stop thinking about so many things that he shouldn't have to.
TO DO IT ALL OVER AGAIN?
HE HAS TO. FOR MARCUS. His faith and love for God is too deep for him not to accept yet another task at hand and embrace adversity. To rise to the occasion that, in all honesty, if he hung it up, I wouldn't blame him. Twice now, the game he loves is now in the background and he has to go back to it, it's not coming to him. That's the black and white of injury. That is the HARSH reality. Football goes on. It just isn't the same without the #21. It just doesn't feel right.
"Now faith is being sure of what we HOPE for and CERTAIN of what we cannot see" - Hebrews 11:1
Marcus, should this ever find your eyes, KNOW that an ENTIRE WORLD is behind you and believes in you. The Gamecock Nation has seen you DEFY everything and ALL things that have tried to stop you, even when that person was yourself, as it should. We all get tired and want to give up but YOU are "THE GIFT", the one that can do so much that the majority of us can't. You have been given an enormous purpose, that may even leave you exasperated and without any clear purpose as to why this has happened. It's not about football anymore. It's not. It is about being nothing short of SUPERMAN. You have to go be our HERO again Marcus. Its what you do best...
I love you brother, we all do. #GamecockNation