COLLEGE STATION — SMU center Blake McJunkin tries abiding by 2 Timothy 4:2-5, so much that he’s prominently displayed the Bible verses on his Facebook page.
One verse reminds readers to “keep your head in all situations.” McJunkin, however, took that slice of solid advice a step further in the heat of competition on Sunday night — by helping Texas A&M’s Trent Hunter keep his head in a sticky situation at Kyle Field.
Hunter, the Aggies’ affable safety, had returned an interception early in the first quarter against the Mustangs, and in the process lost his helmet when McJunkin and SMU teammate Kelly Turner wound up on top of him for the tackle.
With Hunter’s head exposed and with players still moving around, McJunkin committed an act that serves as a sweet reminder that good kids still play this good game — even if it’s a game sometimes causing old men in suits to bicker about things way above the players’ heads (see conference alignment).
McJunkin, with one swift, spontaneous move, shielded Hunter’s head with his burly left arm, in providing safety for the safety, in what could have been a dangerous situation for A&M’s defensive team captain.
“It was just a natural reaction,” McJunkin said. “When he lost his helmet, it was just the right thing to do, no matter the color of his jersey. I’ve seen people get hurt in that situation.” Hunter, in watching the game tape, recognized McJunkin’s kind act — and appreciated it in a way that only guys who’ve put their well-being on the line to play a game can.
“My helmet popped off, and I really didn’t know what had happened,” Hunter said. “When I was watching the video later, I saw that (McJunkin) was protecting my head from any other hit. I really appreciate that gesture — it’s what sportsmanship is all about.”
Not long after, McJunkin left the game, an eventual 46-14 A&M victory, with a badly sprained ankle, and his status is in question for the Mustangs’ contest against UTEP on Saturday. Still, he’s a believer that things happen for a reason — from his impulsive act of shielding Hunter’s head to his sprained ankle that has him hobbling around the SMU campus.
“Because of these things, I’ve gotten the chance to spread Jesus’ name in this article,” McJunkin said.
McJunkin, too, appreciated the outpouring of thanks from Aggies via the Internet after he looked out for one of their own — in a moment that might have filled lesser men with rage following a key turnover.
“People just said, ‘Hey, man, thanks for protecting our player,’” McJunkin said. “That was humbling, to get those messages.” McJunkin, a senior from Plano, comes from what he describes as a “big old mixture” of old Southwest Conference teams. His mother attended Baylor, and his dad, Kirk, played at Texas. His grandfather Herb and uncle Brad played briefly at A&M. McJunkin, too, attended games at Kyle Field as a youth.
“I was very familiar with A&M and Kyle Field and the whole atmosphere,” McJunkin said. “I kind of came full circle in getting to play a game there.”
It’s a game he won’t forget — and neither will a bunch of Aggies thanks to the example he set in a single, pure moment of sportsmanship. When he kept his head — and wrapped a protective, hefty arm around the head of a foe.
Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/sports/college_sports/big_12/article/Aggies-Insider-SMU-player-s-act-draws-praise-2160146.php#ixzz1XNSZh2fG
Brent Zwerneman: SMU player’s act draws praise from Aggies – San Antonio Express-News.