Written by Joe Kleinsasser Tuesday, 03 November 2009 13:50Celebrations used to be saved for special occasions in sports. Now they’re a dime a dozen.
In fact, when the NFL started cracking down on excessive celebrations, people joked that NFL represented the No Fun League.
The New York Giants started the Gatorade shower tradition in 1985. It gained popularity in 1991, when linebacker Carl Banks doused coach Bill Parcells after beating the Buffalo Bills 20-19 to win the Super Bowl.
Celebrating has slowly but surely become more contagious. Coaches get coolers of ice water or Gatorade dumped on their heads after big wins. Players celebrate everything from big hits to routine tackles. It’s as if after every play, someone feels compelled to celebrate. The most common celebration is a guy...
Written by Joe Kleinsasser Tuesday, 20 October 2009 14:06Some coaches are screamers and intimidators. Others are teachers. Still others use a variety of motivational techniques.
Chances are you’ll find successful coaches who fit one of these styles or a combination of these styles. One size doesn’t fit all. I’ve long thought that a coach should be a psychologist to better understand how to communicate effectively with individual athletes and the team at large.
As a former high school and college athlete and long-time basketball official, I’ve witnessed many coaching styles. My personal preference is for a coach who combines teaching with motivation.
On the other hand, some athletes thrive under screaming coaches and a kick in the pants, so to speak, even if they don’t necessarily...
Written by Joe Kleinsasser Tuesday, 06 October 2009 14:11Whenever I have the urge to attend a pro baseball or football game, I wish Hillsboro was closer to Kansas City. But after thinking about all the pros and cons, I decided life is pretty good for sports fans right here.
The undeniably successful National Football League may have reached a saturation point. After years of growth on TV, the combined effect of the recession and the comfort of watching games from home may be taking a toll on America’s most popular sport.
Advertisers love NFL football, because audience ratings are consistently good. They’re especially good for the Super Bowl.
So why is there concern? Well, recently I read that up to four times the number of NFL teams are at risk of having at least one of their games...
Written by Joe Kleinsasser Tuesday, 22 September 2009 13:54Your humble and sometimes humbled columnist has never claimed to have all the answers to all the vexing problems of sports. But my agent, I.M. Slick, has never shied away from an opinion on anything. When he caught up with me the other day, he tried to push some buttons, aka story ideas.
Slick: So when are you going to write about the government’s popular and controversial “cash for clunkers” program?
Joe: What do the Kansas City Royals have to do with it?
Slick: “No, silly. I’m talking about the program that allows up to $4,500 for people to trade in old gas guzzlers for newer, more efficient models.
Joe: OK, I’ll call your bluff. How does that relate to my sports column?
Slick: You need to broaden your horizons, my...
Written by Joe Kleinsasser Tuesday, 01 September 2009 13:36Fair or not, it’s undeniable that athletes are viewed as role models. Elementary and middle school students look up to high school athletes. High school athletes admire college athletes. College athletes desire to be like professional athletes. Fans envy successful athletes.
I don’t know if professional athletes envy anyone, but something tells me that many of the rich and famous wouldn’t mind taking a timeout from public scrutiny.
The fact is that all of us are imperfect. All of us struggle with something—poor decisions, quick temper, inappropriate behavior, addictions, and the list goes on. The difference is that most of our shortcomings aren’t broadcast for others to see.
Were athletes better role models in the past...
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