6 min read

A Father's Day note and a big week coming up

A Father's Day note and a big week coming up

I had two kids under three years old when my Grandpa died. My Dad spoke at his funeral and I remember one specific section of his speech like it was yesterday.

"I don't know if I can do this without you, Dad," he said. "You have been preparing me and preparing me for my whole life, and right now, I just want more lessons."

Grandpa died quickly. His cancer diagnosis came in early May and he passed in mid-June. His health deteriorated quickly, but Dad still had a chance to get some final face time before Grandpa ultimately left this Earth. He spent a lot of time away from the office during those six weeks and spent a lot of time at a hospice center in Logan, UT.

Dad and Grandpa always had a close relationship. They were best friends. They were always talking, and talking about everything. They talked religion, family, BYU sports, career, the happenings of the small farm town of Lewiston, UT, best hunting places and strategy for the upcoming pheasant hunt, and just about anything else you can think of.

And Dad still felt unprepared?

I heard those words leave his mouth and immediately looked at my two kids. If Dad feels unprepared, how in the world am I going to take care of those two kids?

It's hard to be a good dad. When I left the hospital with my daughter, my wife and I were shocked at how little preparation we were given. They just took the baby out of my wife and sent us home with a child. There wasn't a test. There wasn't a manual. We just left with a baby and I was a dad now.

It's a daunting feeling. Dads are told to prepare for their family. They are told to be there for their kids while simultaneously having a successful career. They are told to be tough, and to teach their children to be tough too. When dads do well, things just go by. When dads come up short, they are blamed.

Some of that blame is well-deserved, there is no question about it. There are some really, really bad dads out there giving the majority of dads who are trying their hardest a bad rep. Generally speaking, dads throughout the world are trying their best to do the things that they are told they need to do. So much of the time, dads are gritting their teeth and figuring things out the best they can.

Even though my dad was in his 50s and had successfully raised two kids who were married and out of the house when Grandpa passed, he still felt inadequate and unprepared without his north star there to help him out.

But Dad, let me tell you something that I've always assumed you know but have rarely said out loud: You've done and will continue to do a pheneomal job. Grandpa might have been your north star, but you have always been mine. When I try to figure out the dad I want to be for our kids, I simply try to be the dad that I got to watch for my entire life.

Growing up, you made it to as many baseball games or basketball games as you possibly could. Even though I banished you to the outfield because of your habit to come into the dugout and tell me what to do, don't think I didn't notice you were there. I always knew. And it always meant a lot to me.

You bought an extra BYU football season ticket for me. I remember every time I got checked out of school early to drive to Provo with you and Grandpa to catch a weekday game. Leaving school was a highlight, but going to the games was unreal. It created a lifetime of fun memories and something that I hope continues as long as we both can. This little side career of mine was a direct result of the passion for BYU football that we shared together. It wasn't ever about wins or losses, it was always about being a father and son and taking in a game.

You taught me how to work while simultaneously teaching me that work isn't everything. I could make more money than I do today, but I make enough to give my family a lifestyle that makes us happy. That lifestyle gives me time to coach baseball games and go to movies and do science experiments with my kids. It gives me a chance to give Jessica a much-needed hand when I get home from work. Those things don't happen by accident, they happen because those are the things that you taught me.

You taught me that living for something bigger than me matters a lot. Whether that was living for my family, for my neighbor, for strangers, or for anyone else, it matters a lot. I'm not as good at selflessly giving away my time or money to anyone and everyone who needs it, but I am trying. It's because of you that I dress up as the Grinch every December and go to senior centers to sing to elderly folks without family nearby. It's because of you that I try to volunteer and help others with 'Hey Man!' It's because of you that I try to think of others as much as I can and try to grab hands that are reaching out for help.

I'm proud of the man that I've become, Dad. And I hope you are too. I still get things wrong. I still yell at my kids too much. I still need help and offend or upset people. I still make a ton of mistakes. But I'm trying, and I'm proud of the effort that I'm putting forth.

That's what you always taught me - to give my best effort, in everything. That's what I'm trying to do.

It's been seven years since Grandpa passed away, but I hope you recognize how prepared you really were. Everything you felt about Grandpa is the way I've always felt about you.

Thanks, Dad. I sure love you.


Ths is the biggest recruiting week of the recruiting cycle so far for BYU football. There are a number of official visits that will take place over the next week. Two visits, broken into two groups will take place. A handful of players will arrive on Monday night and stay through midweek, and a couple more handfuls will arrive on Thursday night and stay through the weekend. Let's talk about a handful of the most important names.

Lamason Waller - Wide Receiver

Make no mistake about it, Waller would be a big deal for BYU. He has an incredibly strong relationship with Fesi Sitake. His offer list is incredibly long. Without actually looking it up, I would venture a guess to say he would be the most highly sought after wide receiver to sign with BYU out of high school. Puka Nacua has a strong argument to make as well, but he came to Provo by way of the transfer portal.

Fesi is the reason BYU is in the mix for Waller. As long as Fesi is there, BYU is going to have a puncher's chance in this one.

Nusi Taumoepeau - Edge

Taumoepeau is the kind recruiting battle that BYU has to consistently win in order to take a step forward in the Big 12. He has seen Oklahoma State, Stanford, Utah, and will visit Cal. He is slated to announce his decision on August 1. BYU has hosted him on several unofficial visits so far. They offered and were on him as early as just about everyone else, and earlier than everyone in his final five schools. BYU has a real chance to pick up a big time edge rusher.

Siosiua Vete - Offensive Tackle

Vete is committed to Stanford right now. His twin brother, defensive tackle Kelepi Vete, is committed to BYU. With a strong showing this weekend, could BYU flip Siosiua from Stanford and land a high level tackle the pipeline? It's not a crazy thought. TJ Woods and Sione Po'uha have each been working hard to cultivate strong relationships with the Vete family. That might be enough to win out.

Semi Taulanga - Defensive Tackle

Taulanga is the real deal. The defensive tackle product from Mater Dei has taken an official visit to UCLA and Utah so far. He will visit BYU this weekend. The Cougars simply have to put a strong showing on. This is the kind of player that BYU needs to start winning.  In years past, Taulanga could almost be penciled in as part of Utah's class. This year, Po'uha has BYU firmly in position to make a splash.

There are more visits. Most of BYU's commitments will be here and a bunch of uncommitted players. BYU could make a lot of progress toward their final 2025 recruiting class with a strong showing over the next few days.