It’s like a soap opera…or a Dickens novel. Every day, we hear just a little more about this mess. Paterno’s hired a lawyer. Students are rioting. Sandusky’s denying everything. McQueary is in protective custody. Recruits are de-committing. PSU loses its first game in the post-Paterno era. Every day a little bit more. We get another salacious detail, another intelligence-insulting sound bite, another wheeze in the death rattle of American sport. Because this particular scandal, this abomination, this is the moment that it all changes.
Just reflect briefly over the last ten to fifteen years in American professional, and supposedly amateur (sic) college athletics. Ponder it with me for just a moment. We’ve got Tressel and OSU, improper benefits provided to athletes at U Miami (shocker), investigations into Reggie Bush, Pete Carroll, and USC. We’ve got PEDs in baseball (and everything else for that matter), but baseball -the legends of America's game lying to the face of the American people. We’ve got NBA lockouts and gambling investigations, we’ve got Pacman Jones and Plaxico Burress. We’ve got Julian Edelman allegedly hammered and groping female medical students. We’ve got abusive use of assorted recreational substances. We’ve got rape, even murder. And let’s not forget the guy who went to federal prison for two years because he was fighting dogs. And all of this just barely scratches the surface. It doesn’t even dent it.
We can say it’s because of the money. Folks say it all the time. There’s a point there, not just in the exorbitant player salaries we usually point to, but in the massive amounts of money exchanged daily in the business of sport through sponsorships, media contracts, merchandise, and ticket sales…again the list of categories barely scratches the surface.
But it’s not just the money. It’s the problem.
See the problem, put quite simply, is that sport in this country no longer reflects the values of the nation, nor, more importantly, do they even reflect the basic values that comprise sport itself, words like: honor, competition, sacrifice, determination, improvement, and the exhilaration of a true victory, honestly won.
OUR charge, is changing that…from the ground up!
Coach Q, a.k.a Yann Kumin, is President of Operations for the Boston Institute of Football and Assistant Head Coach for the Malden Catholic Lancers
The Boston Sports Institutes
Boston Institute of Football
Boston Baseball Institute
Boston Institute of Snow
Boston Institute of Jump
(stay tuned for Pt 2)