The Press Box for June 12
The three week period in June when coaches and players can get together has started. It’s a time where kids have a lot of decisions to make. It’s also a time when families schedule time off from work or take vacations to spend part of the summer together.
I feel bad for some of these kids. They’re good kids and they want to do everything expected of them, but some of them have basketball tournaments over the weekend, then they have to come out and play football. Some guys have basketball games or practice in the morning and then football practice in the afternoon. During the three-week practice period, players participating in multiple sports may have to attend multiple practices in the same day.
To me, I wish we’d go back to the old days. When school was out we’d do what we wanted until August, when football started. Then we’d play basketball after football. Today the kids are put in the middle. They’re torn when they miss baseball to go to an open gym for basketball, and those coaches complain when they miss open gym. I know football coaches don’t want to hear this, but I think kids need to have the summer off to go do things with their family.
You need to give these kids outlets to do things they like to do as far as athletics go, but kids need time to unwind. I used to believe it was great for a kid to go in and play everything in high school, but anymore I’m not sure, I’ve kind of switched from that. If a kid plays two sports in high school, that’s plenty, a kid needs time to be a kid and a student.
The three-week rule has been abused anyway! The concept behind it was to be able to work with kids individually, and now you’ve got teams practicing twice a day, and it’s become a problem. Everybody can say what they want to say, if you’re holding workouts, a kid feels like he’s got to be there. You can say ‘voluntary’ or whatever you want, kids feel obligated.
I also want to touch on the selection of All-State. All-State is a big deal, it always has been and always will be. In the past couple years I’ve seen several selections which have no business being on the team. We keep very close tabs on what the area athletes in this area do and we keep a log of all their stats. We do that for a reason, it’s to share with the other sports writers and coaches. That’s one reason why we ask coaches to send us information.
Being from a once a week publication and a small area we don’t have the votes some of the larger schools are afforded. So we keep a pretty close eye on statistics. I was shocked with some of the choices for All-State baseball and even more so with the softball selections. I won’t mention any names but somehow, somewhere they got it wrong.
I enjoy watching all the players in high school and wish everyone of them the best, but to be named as an All-State player you must have some credentials to back it up. I have no problem with Tyler’s first team baseball selection or Paden City’s second team choice but one local boy from New Martinsville deserved
Also a senior girl from Tyler Consolidated who has been on the All-State team for three straight years was not even mentioned.
I encourage all area coaches to make sure you send in your ballots along with stats and accomplishments from your top players. According to an email I received there were a lot of coaches and sportswriters who didn’t submit anything and that’s a shame.
We’re right in the middle of the three week summer sports workouts. We have volleyball, baseball, football and basketball all hapening. There are camps, clinics and shootouts at every school. If you are an athlete and want to play ball next season get in the gym or on the field and let the coaches see what you can do. But don’t ruin your whole summer with nothing but sports, have fun and get some other activiites in. Go fishing, drive around or hang out with friends. Make it a good summer, don’t just lay around the house either, get out and do something. email@example.com