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Monday, July 28, 2014

Revealing Character

Posted Saturday, January 29, 2011, at 2:11 PM

On January 14, 2011, Christian Heritage High School (Utah) beat West Ridge Academy (Utah) in a girl's basketball game by the score of 108-3. Even though Christian Heritage High thought it would be disrespectful to slow down the game, there were endless remarks about the ugliness and unsportsmanlike conduct in the outcome of the game by various national sports and news talking heads.

A similar event took place in January of 2009. Dallas Academy High School in Texas had only 20 girls in attendance and 8 members on the girl's varsity basketball team. They hadn't won a game in more than 4 years. On January 10, 2009, Dallas Academy played Covenant School in a girl's varsity basketball game. Both are private, parochial schools. Covenant School beat Dallas Academy 100 to zero.

Micah Grimes was in his fourth season as coach of the Covenant High School Girls Varsity Basketball Team. The team had a record of 2-19 in his first season and he built the program into a state championship contender last season. Covenant often plays larger out-of-district school and had a 6-3 record for the 2008-2009 season so far.

When the score was 25-0 against Dallas Academy, Grimes called off Covenant's full-court defensive pressure and began resting starters. The score was 59-0 at halftime. In the fourth quarter, Covenant only scored 12 points, totally ceasing scoring in the last four minutes once they reached 100.

Kyle Queal, head of Covenant Academy, subsequently issued an apology to Dallas Academy and offered to forfeit the game. "It is shameful and an embarrassment that this happened.... A victory without honor is a great loss."

On Sunday, January 25, 2009, Coach Grimes posted the following statement on a youth basketball website: "I respectfully disagree with the apology, especially that the Covenant School Girl's Basketball Team should feel embarrassed or ashamed. We played the game as it was meant to be played and would not intentionally run up the score on any opponent. My girls played with honor and integrity and showed respect to Dallas Academy."

Shortly thereafter on the same day, Coach Grimes was fired.

Later, Covenant School posted a statement on their website seeking the "forgiveness of Dallas Academy" while expressing their "regrets" for the "shameful" outcome of the game. "This clearly does not reflect a Christ-like approach to competition."

A Christ-like approach to competition????

Is it a Christ-like approach to fire someone for properly doing their job????

Is everyone in Texas insane????

One of the freshman players on the Dallas Academy team, Shelby Hyatt, was asked about the game. "Even if you're losing, you might as well keep playing. Keep trying and it's going to be okay."

Well, apparently everyone in Texas isn't insane after all.

Recently, a school district in California banned the game of tag from grade school playgrounds. They felt that someone had to be "it" and would thereby get their feelings hurt, thus creating victims with low self-esteem.

Self-esteem is a confidence and satisfaction in oneself. It comes from what we think of ourselves. Basically, you are what you think you are. The higher your self-esteem, the more confidence and satisfaction you possess.

To have high self-esteem, you must realistically accept who and what you are, and have a feeling of worth and competency. You must be capable of meeting life's challenge and believe you're worthy of happiness. People with high self-esteem respect themselves, thereby gaining respect from others.

People with low self-esteem often withdraw within themselves or try to prove themselves by impressing others. They lack confidence, hence avoid exposing themselves to failure, or become arrogant and egotistical to make up for their shortcomings. They'll often blame others rather than take responsibility for their actions.

Nothing builds self-esteem like accomplishment.

Sports are an endeavor in achievement. As in life, there are winners and losers. The lesson to be learned in any competition is to win with honor and to lose with grace. You give it your best effort and live with the consequences.

Some signs you may be suffering from low self-esteem are:

1) You're not only afraid of heights but are also afraid of widths.

2) You consider indecision to be the key to flexibility.

3) Sometimes you stop to think, then forget to start again.

4) Your imaginary friend is smarter and better looking than you.

5) You used to be indecisive, but now you're not so sure.

6) If at first you don't succeed, you blame it on the vast right-wing conspiracy.

7) You believe that reality is the leading cause of stress.

8) When you finally get it all together, you forget where you put it.

9) You believe that growing old is inevitable but growing up is optional.

10) You always wanted to be a procrastinator but never got around to it.

11) You don't suffer from low self-esteem -- you enjoy every minute of it.

12) You were "it" once playing tag as a child and it ruined your life.

Life is a series of trials and tribulations -- sometimes you win, sometimes you lose and sometimes you're "it." Embrace the experience and move on. In only two days, tomorrow will be yesterday.

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Quote for the Day -- "Sports does not build character, it reveals it." John Wooden

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Bret Burquest is an award-winning columnist and author of four novels. He lives in the Ozark Mountains with a dog named Buddy Lee and where reality is the leading cause of stress. His blogs appear on several websites, including www.myspace.com/bret1111

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Bret Burquest is a former award-winning columnist for The News (2001-2007) and author of four novels. He has lived in Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, Kansas City, Memphis and the middle of the Arizona desert. After a life of blood, sweat and tears in big cities, he has finally found peace in northern Arkansas where he grows tomatoes, watches sunsets and occasionally shares the Secrets of the Universe (and beyond) with the rest of the world.
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