By Matt Harper Photos by the Author
scending to the ranks of professional sports is an accomplishment attained by very few. It takes a combination of natural ability, good genetics, incredible effort and focus in honing one’s physical skills—and maybe even a dash of luck. Even more rare are those handful of special athletes who made it to the big time in more than one sport. The natural athletic talent found in people such as Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders that gave them the ability to compete in both professional baseball and football (and do it pretty well) is more than just unique.
Although, there are those that would argue that this is really not all that incredible since many of the same physical abilities are needed to excel in different sports. Speed, hand-eye coordination, strength, endurance and so on are attributes common among most sporting activities. But to reach the professional level in any sporting endeavor, nearly all athletes find themselves at a point in their career where they realize that to achieve the highest level of performance they must doggedly practice and focus on the particular skills their chosen sport requires. Would Aaron Rogers or Tom Brady have been good baseball or basketball players? Probably, because like most professional sports figures, Rogers and Brady are natural athletes. But to become great and to make it to the pinnacle of their chosen sport, they made a decision to hone the specific skills they needed to push
them to greatness. I have had the fortune of taking some pretty good deer through the years. To harvest good deer one must work on the game strategy (reading sign, planning tree stand locations etc.), perfect the necessary skills (making sure you can hit what you aim at) and have a good bit of luck on your side. But even with all of these things, there must be good deer where you are hunting in order to harvest them. This last piece of the puzzle comes as a result of diligent management. When I tell people that I live in southern Iowa, the normal response is something like, “well, it’s no wonder you kill big deer, they are all corn fed.” While admittedly Iowa is a great place for deer hunting, to simply rely on the agricultural practices around you to produce great deer can result in “OK” results— let’s call it minor league Single A results. But to get to the
Diversity is key when planting food plots where diversity is not a key consideration for farmers
WHITETAIL NEWS / Vol. 22, No. 1
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