McCluer North star forward B.J. Young was suspended for two games this week, causing him to miss a pair of huge Suburban North Conference basketball games against Hazelwood West and Hazelwood Central. As part of one of the top teams in the state, this isn’t good at all.
The suspension was a result of Young being ejected from a game for the second time this season, and it’s not the first time he’s been suspended this year.
But this article isn’t about B.J. Young, it was just inspired by his suspension. It’s actually about your kids, and mine, and all the kids throughout Hazelwood that play ball at the Hazelwood Civic Center East, Musick Park, Teson Park and West High.
What’s the deal, guys?
Parents always have and always will struggle to make sure their kids “get it” when it comes to instilling in them the importance of learning, college, sportsmanship, respect, the people with whom they surround themselves and just about every other life choice they every make.
But at some point, can we all agree that a parent can only do so much and that these kids need to get a clue?
If you have already earned a scholarship to play Division I basketball, or for arguments sake even an academic scholarship, doesn’t it go without saying that the hard part is – for now – done? Do we really need to continue to preach to these kids that getting T’d up and tossed out of and suspended from varsity athletics is completely bone-headed?
Sure, kids can get a reputation that lead officials to keep an extra eye on them. And from time to time, they may even seem to be targeted by officials, or that the opposing team is trying to get under their skin and get them riled up. It happens, there is no doubt about that.
Unfortunately, for stars and non-stars alike, this type of trouble just isn’t an option. Particularly if you’ve already got a full ride somewhere. I mean, what’s the point? Why, as a star athlete, would you find it necessary to argue with an official? Why would you allow a hard foul from some kid off the bench of a 4-15 team to bother you?
Do you think the fans want to see you complaining about calls? Do you think the school that offered you a scholarship is excited about reading headlines reflecting your illicit acts? Do you think you benefit in any way at all by going middle school drama-queen on us to question fouls?
I can already hear what some of you are thinking. It’s human nature. It’s not always easy to turn the other cheek. It’s a heat-of-the-moment thing.
Guys and girls, if you have any plans on ever having a job, of ever dealing with a no-nothing boss (I’m so very lucky, of course, to have wonderful, competent, understanding and brilliant bosses here at Patch), then you better learn to deal with a hard foul, a late hit, an inside pitch or an elbow to the head.
Getting in trouble, putting on a show for your friends, arguing with officials and all the other drama performances don’t impress anyone. Take the scholarship, drop the attitude, work hard and be successful. That’s what we, the fans, want to see.
Because all the other stuff… we’re not impressed.