This edition of reader comments dealt largely with one topic – that of our recent post on mismatched blowouts in tournament basketball games. And the readers, pro and con, left little question as to their own opinions.
Its starts this way….
“I’ve thought for a long time that high school basketball teams should have to win a certain number of games to qualify playing in the state tournament. After this first weekend of tournament play, I no longer have any doubts whatsoever that changes are needed. Reading some of the local scores seemed like they had to be a misprint. Teams losing 60, 70, and some by more that 80 points. How can that be enjoyable to play, or even watch? Some teams scored as few as three points, yes 3. Others scored 4, 6, 10, 11, and 13. And that was for 32 minutes of action. And pardon my use of the word ‘action’. The concession stands had more action than that on the basketball floor. It’s past time for the OHSAA to wake up to this nonsense. Love your page.” … Mike Mescher (Dayton)
“I’ve read your stories for years about teams that should NOT be included in the state tournament. But your words have now come true. It’s gutsy on the part of the OHSAA to ask people to pay a premium price to see teams score eight points in four quarters. I mean no disrespect, but it is what it is and someone, somewhere, needs to take some responsible for what’s little more than bad business.” … Michal Frazier
“They read an announcement before every game asking fans and participants alike to respect the game. Seems to me that it should start with the OHSAA.” … Jim Fullenkamp
“The games are bad, but the apathy is worse. The girls game I attended this week didn’t have 50 people in the stands…total!” … Craig Vosburg
(Ed. Note: Craig, with respect to apathy, Troy’s 3,000 seat gym was full to capacity last week for the Fort Loramie-Franklin Monroe game. So we think ‘quality’ has a lot to do with how many show up.)
“I wasn’t there, but I cannot understand when a team beats another, 100-3 (Tri-Village vs. Tri-County North). If you’re telling me that’s sportsmanship, or even respecting the game, I’m done with high school sports.” … Donald Wilhelm
(Ed. Note: To your point, when you beat someone by a hundred points you have to consider that the other team is partly responsible for that, too. But as you say…we weren’t there, either. But officially, it was 103-4, and it was a girls game.)
“I don’t know why blowouts matter to you (Press Pros). You only cover the good teams, anyway. Maybe you can be a seed for change.” … Nick Brumbaugh
(Ed. Note: Nick…Sports Illustrated, CBS, NBC, Fox, Press Pros…whatever it is, it must be going around.)
“I’ve never written before, but I have to respond in this case. If there wasn’t so much emphasis put on the winning by reporters like you sports would be a more enjoyable experience for kids and adults alike. You forget that some kids play for the fun of playing and not to meet someone else’s standard of how well they should play. Shame on you.” … James Harding
(Ed. Note: James…while we appreciate your taking the time to write, we have to respond, too, with apologies for edits due to space. Obviously you miss the essential element of competition, because playing to win is a personal attribute that pays dividends long after you quit playing. And frankly, we’ve watered down competition and personal commitment to the place where trophies are meaningless dust-catchers. There’s a place for those who play for the fun of it, and it’s called intramurals, where the worst that can happen is breaking a sweat – no pressure, and no expectation of achievement. But playing ‘to win’ develops leaders, character and ethics, and people who go on in life to accept responsibility as parents and community leaders. They’re accustomed to the higher standard to which they’re held – the one you disparage – and don’t back down from objection and obstacles. In closing, they’re the people largely responsible for the standard of life that you enjoy…and many have given their lives for it. Shame on you!)
Our February 8 post about girls who bowl, and why, attracted this response:
“I found you on Google, and was delighted to see that someone took the time write about girls bowling (The Girls’ Side, Feb. 8). This was well done and deserves more than just a casual read for the points you made. That being, there’s a place for those who don’t play basketball in the winter, and respect due for the same competitive benefits. Thanks for doing this. I will continue to read.” … Daniel Dunfee (Bryan)
“You guys do a great job with your bowling coverage. Deserving kids who have found a different [competitive] niche.” … Feeson Oceak