Bullying In High School Football. Really?

[caption id="attachment_9072" align="alignright" width="300"]bullying - football - texas - high school Aledo High School Coach Accused Of Bullying
Source: MSN.com[/caption] Bullying is a topic that has gained a lot, but not enough, attention in this country.  Unfortunately, it is being brought up this week because of a parent sending an email accusing a football coach of bullying.  I first heard about this on my local news because this game took place between Aledo High School and Western Hills High School of Fort Worth.  This is very close to home so the coverage has been near constant and every moment of hearing this news drives my blood pressure higher and higher. If you do not know the background on the story let me fill you in a bit.  High School football in Texas is huge.  Football in Texas is huge, bigger than I ever could have imagined before moving down here.  There is a very big feel for community and people defend their communities to the point of fault in some instances.  This past weekend the Aledo football team beat Western Hills 91-0.  On the surface that sounds like a team running up the score to embarrass another team.  As a matter of fact the first thing I did was laugh and thought:  Man, somebody got their ass handed to them.  That was it.  Nothing about bullying or running up the score.  Just a good old-fashioned ass kicking. As it turns out that wasn't just what it was.  A parent sent an email in to complain that the Aledo High School football coach was bullying.  My next reaction:  REALLY!?!?!  Bullying?  Give me a break.  Then it got even worse.  The Aledo coach played his starters for less than 2 dozen plays.  He took his starting running back out after 6 carries, 4 of which went for touchdowns.  He told his punt team to fair catch every punt after the first two punts were returned for touchdowns.  More evidence to the fact that he was not running up the score and certainly not bullying was that he had the third string players in the game playing positions for which they were not accustomed to.  For example, he may have played his 3rd string guard as a cornerback.  When I heard that I thought that was worse than actually scoring 91-0 because now you were just beating them no matter what they did. So this bullying thing got me going and then Kevin sent Jeff and I an email about it and my blood pressure began climbing again.  This parent decided to send an email rather than teach his son.  He chose to place blame on somebody else, as is what occurs in this country on a second by second basis, rather than speak to the coach of his son's team about how to get better.  It is always somebody else's fault.  Now let us go one step further and think about what this parent has done.  He is now taking up the resources of the school to investigate because of the formal complaint, even as ridiculous as this is. [caption id="attachment_9073" align="alignright" width="300"]bullying - football - texas - high school Can A Score of 91-0 Indicate That Bullying Occurred?
Source: WFTV[/caption] His son has to now live with the knowledge that his father sent this email and essentially made his son a wimp in front of the rest of the team and the school.  We all now how high school can be and being singled out for anything can make a kid uncomfortable.  As a matter of fact in an indirect way the father may have set his son up for actual bullying when the other students start calling him names because of this. I have a 7-year-old step-son and I take advantage of every moment, successful or unsuccessful, to teach.  Life is hard and you have to work even harder to be successful.  That is the lesson this father should have taught his son instead of the rallying cry of bullying.  Working in a sales position I understand getting your ass kicked on a daily basis and losing more than winning.  I could lose an account because I do not pitch well and do not match up with the client's needs.  I could lose an account because the person I was up against was better prepared than I was and sold his/her product better than I did.  This happens.  Happens daily, but instead of running into the General Manager that I lost the account because the client was this or the other person was that I let them know that I was not prepared as well as I needed to be or that I pitched the wrong solution to their problem. It happens and I learn from it.  I take this same approach to triathlon.  I am not the fastest but every training session and every race teaches a lesson so that I can continue to get better and better.  I think this is called responsibility, but maybe I'm wrong. Bullying is a very serious topic and as serious as football is in this country it is not on the same level as bullying and as a matter of fact it is a game.  A game that parents and coaches could use as a way to teach but to liken it to bullying is absurd.  There are kids in this country that commit suicide because of bullying and while 91-0 is an ass kicking I highly doubt that the kid on the losing team was thinking to themselves that it was bullying to the extent that we have heard about.

Do You Put This 91-0 Football Game On The Same Level As Bullying?

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Jason Bahamundi

About the Author:

I grew up in New York and lived there for 34 years until I got divorced and moved 1600 miles to my new home in Texas.  I love New York and miss it but that does not mean that Texas hasn’t been great to me because it has.  It was here that I discovered endurance sports and specifically the sport of triathlon.  Triathlon has given me new life through all the challenges it presents.  I no longer look at life the same way and I can say that is in part due to my endeavor into this sport.

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