Rocky Hulne: Remember sportsmanship during tourney time

Published 5:01 pm Friday, February 24, 2023

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After a long, cold winter it is finally that time of year again.

No I don’t mean the February or March blizzards which always hit this time of year; I’m talking about tournament time.

Gyms and arenas will be packed with parents, friends, students and community members showing up to cheer on their hometown teams in pursuit of that magical state tournament.

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The games are always full of intensity and a loud crowd is great. But it is important to remember sportsmanship goes beyond the athletes and coaches.

We are currently dealing with a referee shortage and that clever taunt that a fan has ready to fling in an official’s way may be the final shove that causes them to call it quits.

The facts are simple.

Without refs, we have no games. With experienced refs quitting, we will have more new refs with the possibility of lesser quality games.

Almost all of these refs have a day job that they work and many have families waiting for them at home. The last thing they need is an overzealous fan telling them how bad of a job they are doing.

You wouldn’t show up at a gas station and heckle the cashier, would you?

You also wouldn’t want somebody standing over you at your job, screaming at you every time you do something they don’t think is correct.

So lets be loud during these tournament games, but let’s also be kind.

A good cheer beats out a nasty chant any day of the week.