At every district tournament or Florida High School Athletic Association-sanctioned state playoff game, an announcement is made to let good sportsmanship show. It's too bad that announcement isn't made at regular-season games.
At every district tournament or Florida High School Athletic Association-sanctioned state playoff game, an announcement is made to let good sportsmanship show.
It's too bad that announcement isn't made at regular-season games.
Sportsmanship takes on many forms including fans' reactions, officials' calls, the way coaches coach a game and players play a game, and how players treat their opponents.
I was watching the National Football League playoff game between the San Francisco 49ers and Carolina Panthers on Sunday when 49er quarterback Colin Kaepernick mocked Carolina quarterback Cam Newton's touchdown celebration.
Any chances there were of me pulling for the 49ers in this week's game against Seattle went out the window with Kaepernick's classless gesture.
I love the attitude of Emmitt Smith, the NFL's all-time leader in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns. Smith, who scored 164 rushing touchdowns and another 11 receiving TDs, said, "Act like you've been there (in the end zone) before."
Smith never spiked the ball or did a fancy dance after a score. He simply handed the ball to the official and celebrated his score with his teammates.
It's a good example for our local teams. I witnessed a couple of unsportsmanlike incidents this past week. Each involved teams from Chipley High School.
The first incident occurred Tuesday night when Chipley's boys basketball team played at Crestview.
The Tigers led Crestview by 11 points with four seconds left in the game. Rather than let the clock run out, Chipley Coach Joel Orlando called a timeout, seemingly to set up one more scoring play at a point when the game had already been won.
Calling a timeout when you have the game well in hand is, in my opinion, poor sportsmanship.
Chipley's boys don't have a corner on poor sportsmanship.
Friday night, Chipley's girls traveled to Baker in a District 3-1A game. The Tigers led Baker 37-11 at the start of the second half and quickly scored the nine points needed to push the lead to 35 points and start the running clock.
Even with the game in hand and the clock running, Chipley Coach Kimberly Tuel continued to have the Tigers push the action against the outmanned Gators.
Running up the score on an outmanned opponent should be considered unsportsmanlike in anyone's book.
Many fans and coaches would argue that they aren't responsible for the other team's inability to score or to keep their team from scoring. The coach might say his or her job is to prepare the team to play and the opposing coach's job is to stop them.
That argument is good at college or professional levels, where teams are supposed to play on a more level playing field. But a high school coach is stuck with the talent on campus unless he or she recruits and breaks the rules.
No high school team will win a state championship by running up the score against an overmatched opponent. Good teams will win their playoff games and march to the state finals.
At the end, it only matters if you win, not by how many points you win.
One of the things I've always admired about Baker School football Coach Matt Brunson is his willingness to take his foot off the gas when a game's in hand.
Yes, Brunson-coached teams have won games by big margins and with a running clock, but it's not because he intentionally ran up the score for the sake of beating a team into submission.
Matt Brunson knows the importance of sportsmanship ó and it shows.
I can think of some coaches who could learn a thing or two about sportsmanship from Matt.
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletinís sports editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524.