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Life Lessons

Another Blot on Women’s Sports

Female athletes are acting more and more like their male counterparts. And that’s not good.
Wednesday night provided the latest example, when Baylor’s Brittney Griner punched Texas Tech’s Jordan Barncastle in the face.
Griner will be sitting out two games. Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said in a statement issued late Thursday that Griner will be suspended for one game in addition to a one-game suspension mandated by NCAA rules.
“I am very disappointed in the incident,” Mulkey said.
This incident follows other examples of women behaving in ways that are all too familiar in the men’s arena.
In November, New Mexico soccer player Elizabeth Lambert received a suspension and wide criticism for rough play that included yanking an opponent to the ground by her hair.
Tennis star Serena Williams received a fine and probation for threatening an official in last year’s U.S. Open. And Rutgers Coach Vivian Stringer drew a one-game ban for a violation of an NCAA bylaw involving the eligibility of male practice players.
Now, as with the other incidents, a debate grows over an possible double-standard. Do we want the women’s game to be a little kinder and gentler? If that’s a diouble-standard, I plead guilty. I don’t want women — or ANYONE — doing some of the things we hear about from male athletes.
That includes carrying and brandishing guns, breaking and entering, assault, academic cheating, recruiting violations, etc.
This is probably naive, and growing more naive by the day, but women’s athletic can be an oasis in the athletic arena.
From what I’ve observed, women have a healthier view on sports than men do. They compete hard, but are able to put it in perspective when the game is over. They don’t get haunted by losses (though I know a lot of coaches who wish the sting of defeat would linger a little while longer on women’s teams).
I have no data on this. Maybe someone out there does. But for right now, the anecdotal information we’re getting from women’s sports is not good.


One comment for “Another Blot on Women’s Sports”

  1. Hi Mike
    As someone who has coached both males and females- the ladies on the whole are able to put things behind them faster especially losses and/or poor individual play.
    (that can bother coaches as you stated)

    As far as the Baylor girl I would have liked a longer suspension but I guess at the bigtime D-I level thats big enough

    Posted by kevin reilly | March 6, 2010, 12:43 am

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