Earlier today, I wrote my thoughts about the Oscoda Area High School football team and how their coach shut their season down after going 0-4 and not scoring a single point. I may have to revise my opinion of the situation. My thoughts were boiled down to:
Let the kids play, as long as you can get enough of them out there to field a team. Sports build character and help the kids continue to lead a healthy lifestyle after school.
I have since heard an interview with their head coach, Kyle Tobin, on the radio. I may have to adjust my stance a bit in this particular case. According to the coach, he did not arbitrarily cancel the season. He approached his athletic director, the superintendant, the school board, and eventually the school’s law firm with his concerns and it was decided collectively to cancel the season. The reasoning was that only a few of the kids did the training over the summer to get ready for the season, none of them had very much if any experience, and they had already had one game that they had to postpone in order to get medical clearance for enough players to put on the field.
In this case, it does seem as though perhaps the right thing to do was to cancel the season. Sports are still important, but you can not go straight into competition with no base and barely enough players. The kids apparently could not protect one another and were blowing assignments, and already had a half dozen to a dozen kids injured. And that is just for the kids that show up to practice and to games. Tobin had told the kids in the spring what would be expected of them, and only a few followed through.
Assuming that everything that Kyle Tobin said in the interview was true, then he made the right decision. He seemed very convincing to me, and until I have actually seen some of the film or heard anything to the contrary I am going to have to revise my stance. This just goes to show that I can not be right all the time, I suppose…