Punch mars great game

Published 4:14 pm Wednesday, September 9, 2009

By By Chandler Myers
Last week, a grizzly scene unfolded before millions of eyes around the world after a hard-fought game between the Boise State Broncos and the Oregon Ducks.
The Broncos had just finished off the Ducks 19-8 in what was supposed to be offensive battle of the century.
The game turned out to be a defensive battle with neither team’s offense really showing any juggernaut power.
What happened after the game though was a juggernaut of a problem that resulted in one player falling to his knees and another player being escorted from the field and ultimately being suspended.
As the players from each team were shaking hands after the game, Broncos defensive end Byron Hout slapped the shoulder pad of Oregon running back Legarrette Blount and shouted something while doing it.
Blount responded by sending a sharp right to the jaw of Hout right in front of Hout’s coach Chris Petersen who had grabbed the defensive end to sternly lecture him on what he had just done.
The punch by Blount sent Hout dazed to his knees, while Blount was quickly grabbed by his teammates.
Blount’s problem didn’t stop there though as he then tried to resist the police, fight his teammates as well as fans.
Blount, a senior, is now suspended for the season, and had surely dropped his stock in the NFL.
Hout even though it could be said that he instigated the incident has not been suspended, which has put Boise State’s coach under scrutiny.
Should he be suspended? That’s for Petersen to ultimately decide, but most people feel he should.
The most memorable point of the post-game drama should not be the punch, but how the other players reacted. No more fights happened and everyone did their best to deescalate the situation.
That in itself shows how far sportsmanship has come. There are still bad moments, but something good can still come from those moments.
Hopefully, our local athletes are able to learn from the good moments of sportsmanship and not the bad ones.
This week, I encourage the head coaches of our area teams to take a minute and think about the importance of good sportsmanship. Maybe talk to the head coach of your opponent and set up a good gestured handshake between the players.
It would be good for everyone involved and show the kind of community that the team represents.
Honestly, if Florida State and Miami, can do it then any team should be able to start off a game strong like that.
Chandler Myers is sports editor of the Atmore Advance. He can be reached at 368-2123 or by e-mail at sports@atmoreadvance.com

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