A Parent's Perspective

Here is a post from our premium message board from Kent Thompson, the father of Arkansas wide receiver David Thompson. The redshirt freshman from Memphis, Tenn., tore an ACL last week and will soon undergo reconstructive surgery. This a free story.

I have read this Board quite often since Arkansas began recruiting my son (David). Until today, I have never posted and am reluctant to now (not very good at it).

But I want to share some information with supporters of the U of A, potential student athletes and their parents who may see this, and perhaps help someone else who is facing a setback or adversity of their own.

Anytime a child is seriously injured, it is frightening and devastating thing to the child, parents, and family. It can be a long road back to good health. But when your son dreams for years of playing college football and you witness the dedication, sacrifice, and hard work he puts into being as good as he can be at something he loves, and one minute he is on top of the world and the next he is on the ground with a season ending injury before the season even begins, it also absolutely breaks your heart.

I know David's heart is broken as well. He is mentally and physically strong and has unlimited determination and courage so he will survive this. I pray he recovers well and one day gets another chance to live out his dream on the field.

He told me yesterday,"I know I will be back, but what really hurts is this group of Seniors are a special group of guys, and I am so disappointed that I won't be with them to win games and be a part of their last year".

That is how all these guys feel about each other. They are close and they are really good kids. I also want to add that as any of the kids who have been seriously hurt can tell you, they need support, encouragement, and prayers more than ever during their recovery and comeback. So please remember David in yours.

The medical staff who have taken care of David so far have been outstanding and people need to know that. From the Doctors, to Dean Weber, to Eric Linson, and to all the trainers, I have been totally impressed and confident in their efforts and skill. Their professionalism, kindness, love and support towards David has been exceptional and far exceed my expectations.

Having spent the last couple of days with these folks, I am very pleased and comfortable with his care thus far. I have been kept completely in the information loop and I feel he is in very good hands. He will have surgery in a couple of weeks. You never know how important the medical staff, facilities, and protocol are in a program until you need it. I have learned that not all schools are equal in this area (even in the SEC).

Example: some schools will not pay for a second medical opinion if desired, Arkansas will. That's pretty important, wouldn't you say? Everyone should know that the U of A program is one of the best!

We as fans, usually give little thought about the team or the players as individuals except for how they perform on the field or when they get in trouble. We all want a winning season and a National Championship, but that does not define a great program. This is a team that loves and cares about each other and is a team in every sense of the word.

This is a program with people of character, kindness, and generosity, with some of the finest coaches, players, and staff members I have ever been around. Their words and kindness expressed and shown to David since his injury have touched our hearts beyond belief.

I know Marvin Jackson (to name only one) has been a great inspiration to David already by his example and words of encouragement. I hope David can do the same for others that come behind him. Coach Shibest has been in constant contact with David and has been very considerate and understanding.

This is a great program. I feel very fortunate and blessed that David is a Razorback and a member of this team. The Razorback Nation has every right to be proud of this organization and should be.

When David decided to commit to Arkansas, he told me, "I don't want to go anywhere else but Arkansas, it feels like home to me". I now know he was right.

To all those who have and will help David through this difficult time, thank you!

--Kent Thompson, David Thompson's Father

David Thompson tucks away a catch in fall drills.

Photo by Clay Henry

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