I have certainly come across some pretty irrational and unscrupulous behavior when researching material that supports the need for positive change in our current sports and youth sports culture. Whether it be from parents behaving badly, athletes engaging in unsportsmanlike, unethical, and/or even illegal conduct (at all levels), or coaches being involved in some type of unprincipled scheme in order to “win” or covering up activities, there is usually something dishonorable going on somewhere almost every week.
Then, the other day, I come across this, Timothy Forbes Bit Off Part Of Basketball Coach's Ear At Son's Game In Massachusetts, Cops Say.
Just reading the title gives me extreme pause. I figure some parent got mad about something at his kid’s basketball game, confronted the coach, got into a physical confrontation, and actually bit part of a coach’s ear off at his son’s game―still having a hard time with that.
As crazy as that sounded, the title did intrigue me as it supported my thoughts that things have gotten out of hand with some parents at the youth sports level. And this one was really out there.
I had to know more, so I continued reading through this article. I also pulled several different pieces up on the story from a number of different news sources.
I found the original piece (linked above) at huffingtonpost.com to be the most credible. They were the only ones who detailed how the original story had taken a turn, different than what many were reporting. Take a look:
Man, I had to watch the video twice just to wrap my brain around what actually happened at that basketball game. It is hard for me to even imagine.
Sure, I’ve seen yelling, screaming, pointing fingers, trash talking, even near physical confrontations between spectators, parents, referees, and/or coaches, but avulsion of a body part, really!!! And over a kid’s basketball game, any game for that matter, c’mon.
I can’t even contemplate someone being so angry, so inexplicably furious, that they would resort to such an act. Maybe to save their own life, or the life of a loved one, but here at a Catholic Youth Organization sporting event!!!
It is spectator/parent behavior at its most extreme, and it has absolutely NO place at any level of sports, EVER!!!