Patrick Mahomes gets it.
The 2018 NFL MVP and reigning Super Bowl MVP’s remarks to Texas Tech graduates during Saturday’s virtual commencement exercise lasted less than two minutes, via Adam Teicher of ESPN.com.
“I know this isn’t the graduation ceremony that you and your families had envisioned, but that doesn’t change the outcome or all the hard work, long hours, and sacrifices that you made to achieve this milestone,” Mahomes said. “I know this is sure not how you imagined spending your last days as a student.
“But the world is in a different place today than it was just a few weeks ago. And as Red Raiders, we’re built to persevere in difficult times. We’ve all had to take a moment and learn to adjust to these new challenges. And when the odds are stacked against us, we make a play — and I can tell you this is going to make us all more competitive and hungrier than ever.
“Remember, this is a day to celebrate, to look back on the friends you made, the professors who have changed your life and the memories that you will cherish forever. Whatever plans lie in front of you, I have no doubt you will go out there and show the world what it means to come from Lubbock, Texas. Go out and win your Super Bowl. Congrats, Class of 2020. I can’t wait to see what you do next.”
It takes most people a few trials and errors to realize that, in situations were speeches are perfunctory but are far from necessary to the proceedings, it’s always better to keep it short and sweet. Rarely if ever does anyone say after a commencement address of any kind, “Man, I wish that one had kept going.” (And if/when that happens, it’s usually because the speaker kept it short and used the limited time to say something memorable.)
Kudos to Mahomes for already figuring that out. He sent a strong and clear message, and he did it quickly and cleanly, so that they could move on to the next item in the program.