Not just a Bad Call : Terrible Judgment and the End of Youthful Exuberance
I watched O’Reilly tonight. He briefly covered a play that occurred at a high school football championship game. Instead of passing, the quarterback for “Cathedral” ran successfully for a touchdown. Here is a clip from the game. As this young man was running for the touchdown, he triumphantly raised his fist in the air. A flag was thrown. The referee (now referred to as Stalin), threw a flag and voided the play. Stalin believed he violated a rule about “celebrating”. “Blue Hills”, the opposing team, won the game. How this affected the game who knows. Perhaps Cathedral was downtrodden about Stalin’s call, and could not psychologically recover. It could be that Blue Hills was rallied by this surreal event. Such is sports.
A little about me. As my boss constantly reminds me at work “it’s always about me.” One should note this supervisor of mine refuses to be my Facebook Pal. It is his loss I assure you. In my youth I was never considered an athlete. I do not think in my sagging forties this shall change. I cannot throw a football, baseball, or even a Foosball. For me, a bat is not for striking a ball. The primary purpose of a blunt object is to subdue a deadly opponent.
This could perhaps be the unaccomplished athlete inside; a little jealousy. But I feel that sports, and athletes are over emphasized in this society. One lauds someone that can throw a ball. Ask that same person the significance of Michio Kaku or Milton Friedman. You might receive a black stare. Bread and Circuses people. Bread and Circuses.
This was not simply a bad call by Stalin. If the play was recalled due to holding or a false start, you can understand this. As a matter of fact it is a life lesson. Some decisions are made you cannot agree with. One must move on.
This was a championship game. The kids playing this game will remember this forever. The winners and losers. Stalin has taken a simple event and scarred both teams. The players of Cathedral will perhaps remember this as if they were cheated. The players of Blue Hills may feel they unfairly won the game. This was not a person throwing gang signs or jumping in the side lines after a touchdown. This helmeted warrior was….. well he was happy. What is wrong with that!!! Are we teaching the next generation that it is poor form to simply celebrate?
Before writing this, I spoke with a friend of mine. He played for Cranford High School Football and also played college ball as well. He was courted by multiple colleges. His opinion is for athletic scholarships, it was of little importance who won this game. Scouts were already watching their performances. They were on winning teams; the scouts gravitated towards talented teams and perused. If even one of these kids was going to play for a college, the game had little significance on their scholastic future.
My thoughts go out to the middling players, on both teams. For four years, they toiled on practice fields and pushed themselves. They gain the privilege to play a championship game. In most games like this, one can remember the perfect pass or sack. For Cathedral and Blue Hills; Stalin taught them political correctness. I do have a remedy for this. The coaches and players should get together (and certainly not tell anyone), rent a referee(s); suit up and play a game. If I was on either team, I would be there.