Tony DeMeo

How Goliath Could Have Beat David

Everyone always talks about how the little shepherd boy slew the great giant Goliath. I’ve used this analogy over & over again. Anytime a plan for a big upset is being hatched, most of us think of ourselves as David. BUT what if you are Goliath? Everyone EXPECTS you to trounce your smaller foe, it can be a no win situation. If you destroy David you get no props, you did what was expected. If you lose, you’re a bum.

So what should have Goliath done to defeat David?
First off there are some very valuable rules Goliath broke that cost him the battle and his head:

1. Know your opponent. There was no scouting report on the young shepherd. So Goliath was fighting an unknown. If you don’t know your opponent proceed with caution. Rushing into battle is the quickest way to The Little Big Horn.

2. Never underestimate your opponent because of size. Goliath was overconfident because of David’s small stature. Bear Bryant’s early National Championship teams were always quick & fast but usually out-weighed by their opponents. The announcers would always mention how small Bear’s guys looked but stunned at how BIG they played. Remember, It’s not the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog.

3. Never fight today’s battles with yesterday’s weapons. Goliath went to the battle with David armed with same sword & shield that he always did. However vs David he faced long range artillery in the form of a Sling Shot. The Nazis early success in WWII was due in part to Europe using WWI tactics & weaponry vs a new Blitzkrieg style of warfare. Goliath wasn’t prepared for the Sling Shot.

4. Goliath was immobile thus an easy target for David. Goliath’s lack of mobility was never a factor when his opponents came to him mano y mano but vs David this proved to be a deadly flaw. Sonny Liston’s lack of mobility was never a factor until exposed by the mercurial Muhammad Ali. A weakness isn’t a weakness until it’s exposed. So Goliath never knew his weakness until it was too late. Sun Tzu said to know your enemy’s weakness is important but to know your own is critical. The Big G found this out the hard way.

So what should the mighty Goliath done to beat this new kid on the block? Could Goliath have beaten David? Was it Goliath who was really the underdog?

The Goliath Game Plan:
1. Be a good sport. Offer to shake hands with David prior to the battle. This would bring David close to Goliath where he would be most effective.

2. VS an unknown always play Defense first. Know what you are up against. Don’t become a General Custer. Find out what David can do. Time is on your side. Error on the side of caution

3. Get a Scouting Report – Learn all you can about your opponent. If Goliath KNEW David was a shepherd, he might have expected the use of a sling shot. David’s element of surprise would be gone.

4. Lure the Tiger from the mountain. If you can’t get close to David make David come to you. When Goliath went s=down from the stone, David rushed in to behead Goliath. BUT what if Goliath was faking injury? When young Davey boy went in for the kill he would be in Goliath’s yard fighting Goliath’s style battle. The advantage in close quarters goes to the Big G.

5. Plan for a tough battle. Goliath’s ego & belief in his own press clippings led to a feeling of invincibility this was really his downfall. As John Wooden said “Fail to prepare, prepare to fail”
Goliath wasn’t prepared for this battle & his win streak was over. Mike Tyson never prepared for Buster Douglas and Mike lost his Heavyweight Crown to a 40-1 Buster Douglas. Always prepare like this was your toughest opponent & you’ll be ready to improvise, adjust & advance.

So if I was coaching Goliath, the big guy would have been ready and David would have wished he was tending his sheep.