I do not think you need to have a child involved in youth sports to have an idea that they are much different than they used to be. They are different in many ways. The players are better, they have better access to all facets of the games, and the competition is much more hasty. I believe that the high voltage competition has led to much more violence in youth sports. There are all types of violence including player/player, player/referee, and referee/coach. I do not think player/player violence will ever stop. Competition can cause players to get after each other from time to time. However, there is no way a referee or coach should be involved in any type of violence, especially in youth sports. By the way, I am not even mentioning the “craziness” of parents. I have picked a few episodes of this violence and we can take a look at them below.
All of this is old except for this nugget that recently came out. I have watched this at least ten times. At first it is pretty funny. However, I do not understand why a coach thinks it is acceptable to go onto the court and so forcefully reject a players shot. I have never seen something like this in my life. No matter how angry the coach is that the kid is going the wrong way, you can’t go onto the court like that. He then proceeds to block his shot and cross his arms. The whole thing is pretty weird. I am glad he is wearing a shirt and tie to the game, but he certainly is not acting like a shirt and tie guy in this clip.
This incident is a couple of years old, but it still sticks in my mind. I remember thinking the players were crazy for doing this. They should have been shut down immediately and even have criminal charges. However, more information came out and it seems the players might have been coerced by an assistant coach. Of course, a coach ordering a player to do this is ridiculous and against all sportsmanship. Even if the coach does not order it, but he/she hints that something needs to be “done” to a referee is an issue. Many players, especially youth players will do anything to get the attention of a coach or to please a coach. I know they were old enough to not have done this, but ultimately they are still children and are very impressionable.
Here is another video that shows a youth game getting stopped for some reason. Then the video shows the referee being assaulted by one of the coaches. In no way is this acceptable. If this were to happen on the street it would be considered a serious crime and I hope it was treated that way in this instance.
There are tons of examples that are on the internet. This article could go on forever about these issues. I am not quite sure when it became acceptable for this behavior to occur? I would imagine that this happened 40 years ago, but it was a different time and people did not have smartphones at their disposal to record everything. I just do not think that is was nearly as prevalent as it is now. Whatever the cause may be, it needs to be corrected. The irony in this is that youth sports are a great way for children to learn tons of life lessons. But when this stuff happens it basically erases any good that the game itself can infuse.