Georgia’s challenge after losing the national title game on a game-ending touchdown to Alabama is to separate the gut from the wrench.

The psychological damage, if not properly handled, could easily oil-leak into the following season.

First, don’t deny the defeat. Face it and learn from it.

“Yeah, we watched it,” Georgia Coach Kirby Smart said at SEC Media Days. “Obviously I see it on replays and different ESPN highlights.”

Ah, highlights—those are the killers.

I just turned 60 and still turn away when vintage TV airs clips from the Lakers’ Game 7 loss, in 1969, to the Boston Celtics.

Don Nelson sealed victory with a shot that hit the back of the rim, bounced 10 feet in the air, and dropped through the net as if directed by a Leprechaun or the butt end of Red Auerbach’s cigar.

Later, in the 1980s, as a “big-city” reporter from L.A., I was dispatched to Milwaukee to do a story on Bucks Coach…Don Nelson.

Sitting down for breakfast at a local coffee shop I introduced myself and told Mr. Nelson I had to get something off my chest before the interview.

“What’s that?” Nelson said.

Me: “I hate you.”

Nelson looked puzzled at first but eventually broke into a broad smile.

“Lucky shot,” he said. The rest of this article is available to subscribers only – to become a subscriber click here.