All this role-model stuff has always been garbage and ramped-up sportswriter libretto.
role model n.
A person who serves as a model in a particular behavioral or social role for another person to emulate.
A person who serves as an example of the values, attitudes, and behaviors associated with a role. For example, a father is a role model for his sons. Role models can also be persons who distinguish themselves in such a way that others admire and want to emulate them. For example, a woman who becomes a successful brain surgeon or airline pilot can be described as a role model for other women.