by Angeline Seames
In San Diego, a youth football and cheer league got a little out of hand. With 30 seconds left in a youth football game, adults in attendance broke out into a fight in the stands. With this occurring during the game the league commissioner decided to remove both teams from the San Diego Youth Football and Cheer League. The parents and players now are protesting and threatening to sue the league.
What has caused youth sports to escalate to parents fighting against each other? Parents and coaches is the answer. For many reasons parents have this void or withdraw from the competitive spirit of sports. That is the reason why many parents allow their child to play in sports. Parents become emotionally involved and see their young athlete as an investment. While parents believe their child is gifted and could be rewarded with college athletic scholarships. The sad reality of it all is that in men’s football and basketball for every 10,000 high school student athletes, nine will play in the NFL and three will play in the NBA.
The Michigan State University Institute for the Study of Youth Sports, found that 70% of kids drop out of sports by the age of 13 because of adults. The main reason why kids play sports is to have fun, socialize and learn new skills. When parents become too involved they overemphasize performance and winning, creating pressure for the kids which is no fun for the kids.
Just the same as parents, coaches get lost in the way of winning instead of teaching life lessons, values, new skills and socialization. Coaches most of the time focus on outstanding athletes, instead of allowing undeveloped athletes playing time to grow, to give their team the better outcome of the game.
These adults are role models to the children that are participating in the youth sports team. While parents and coaches are just focusing on winning, they are teaching their children that winning is everything. This statement is true because the U.S. is a very competitive country but, adults should be teaching their children morals and fighting for them no matter what it takes.
With that in mind, youth sports may see changes in crowd control, coaching staff and allowing adults to cheer on their children during sporting events. As parents become more involved in youth athletics, there’s the true question about if youth athletics will stay around.