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Re: Outbursts/Coach strategy
On Sun, 28 Jan 1996, Michael Bryant wrote:
> I thought I'd climb out of bed long enough to add this to the thread:
> I think Stepp and Rogers are right when they say that after-round
> outbursts are undesirable. I really disagree, however, with Tuna's
> initial suggestion that most outbursts are a form of "strategic
> deterrence." I think people just lose their temper.
THAT CANNOT EVEN BE POSSIBLE TRUE!! (Unless I am the only shamelessly
manipulative person in CEDA).
I know for a fact that it is a strategy to force more
"accountability"--I have for the last couple of years maintained my
silence in the face of *(excrement)* decisions (or at least RFDs--the
decisions may have been ALL correct--the RFDs were, shall we say, lame)
because as a DIrector I am required to educate, to lead and to teach
At the GSL, I finally lost it, and reacted to what I perceived as a
ridiculous decision (Gee, I always thought it was the plan that determined
The reaction of my students was amazing--one of them thanked me for
defending them and for finally giving notice that I wasn't going to take
this crap any more.
The argument made, was that a baseball manager has the responsibility to
defend a player on the manager's team, even if the mgr knows player x was
out at second by a full step, instead of safe. My debater(s) feel that I
am violating their space when I am not 'in the ring' with them....
I have emerged from this in a quandry--I will NOT engage in that kind of
behavior again (and in fact, am embarrassed at my behavior, and have
apologized to the critic, the other team, and their director), and yet, my
students will feel that I am not defending them...
I think it is ridiculous to argue, as BEar does, that this must mean I am
the only person in the entire country outside of Tuna that thinks coaches
might have some form of pre-meditation about this. I have considered
being more confrontational, but won't just because of how hard I laugh at
confrontational debaters (I had someone freak out at me a couple of years
ago, because he thought that because he had parametricized, he became the
resolution, and no longer had to answer topicality violations--boy, was he
mad--and boy have I enjoyed a series of giggles over this one...) and how
pathetic I find coaches to whom winning and losing is everything....
On the other hand, I do find there to be a contradiction here--I want my
students to learn professionalism and maturity, and yet I also want them
to know that I am in their corner, fighting for them.
How do I do that without being confrontational?
What does a coach do when the trend nationally is for more accountability,
when critics who judge my treams know that they will not have to defend
themselves to me, that I'll still have a beer afterward with them, and yet
feel that that is not the truth with many other coaches/directors in the
northwest or the nation. Do I think that makes it easier to vote against
me than to vote against team X, with red-faced angry director? Of course.
Since I know that, BEar, do you think that other schools haven't figured that
simple formula out? If they have figured that out, do you think that
directors would refrain from using that weapon? Gimme a break..all
coaches 'work the refs'--I was a master manipulator when I coached hockey
(sorry to brag, but I remembered ref tendencies all season, and before
games would remind them, would have my captain tell refs what activities
we would not tolerate, (Including some legal ones--if you would like an
example, I'll tell you all about this poor team from Edmonton who was
shamefully homered (home town refereed into submission) simply because the
refs knew that I could have their SNO-KING referees credentials reviewed
if they did not stop Edmonton from beating up on us--they were large, we
were small--same age group, legal hits, but I 'protected' my team into
forcing the refs to force a diff't style of play onto this team from
Edmonton--result--we win 3-1-totally legally--but not over whelmingly
Anyway--I tell you that to tell you this...
I know coaches use intimidation as a tactic--I have considered using it
more (because I am such a nice guy....), but I am going to reject that as
a tactic within myself (because it is pretty damn immature) but I still
feel that I should do more to protect my squad from other angrier coaches.
Any solutions, folks?
MEAN PEOPLE SUCK
the tony guy here at Seattle University--playing on e-mail when I should
be submitting expense reports, and requesting $$ from this weekend at
It's ashame all
> of us aren't level-headed role models, but the unfortunate reality is
> that we're not. If Stepp is serious about the CEDA tent being large
> enough for everone to fit under, why can't it be large enough to
> tolerate those who do have a propensity to explode occasionally.
> But in the "real world," the first amendment generally protects
> outbursts, as long as that outburst remains in the realm of speech.
> If one of my students went beserk over a grade in one of my classes
> and rose to express that anger, I still believe that it would be
> inappropriate for me to attempt to remove that student from the class
> or punish them through recourse to higher rungs in the hierarchy. For
> goodness sake, we are speech professors! If we can't attempt to
> respond to an outburst without resorting to punitive measures, what
> have WE learned? It's like the tolerance rationale advanced in legal
> analysis of 1st Amendment free speech. Free speech means little
> unless we also allow it to protect those things that would repulse
> some of us. Flag-burning may seem detestable to many of us, but
> punishing people for expressing their political views seems far more
> Jack, I too have a child, and when she was four I realized that
> punitive actions to every little temper tantrum only serve to disrupt
> our relationship. Tolerance may result in changing social mores, but,
> just in case you haven't looked, behavioral expectations change
> whether we try to stop them or not. Walking out of the room, not
> development of a list of accepted punitive measures, still seems the
> moral high ground, particularly for speech professors. I find your
> reference to studies of military discipline only feeds my
> perspective. I don't want the debate to be a classroom or a military
> barracks. I'm willing to tolerate perceptions of potential weakness
> on my part. Personally, I would perceive punitive measures as a
> greater sign of weakness and abandonment of even the attempt at
> reasoned discourse.
> No one has ever really threatened me. No one has ever thrown anything
> at me. Words are tolerable. Retribution is clearly questionable.
> Seems an easy call.
> Taking my medicine and climbing back in bed,
> Michael "Bear" Bryant Internet: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Director of Forensics Home: 801-399-4253
> Department of Communication Office: 801-626-7186
> Weber State University Fax: 801-626-7975
> Ogden, UT 84408-1605 AOL: MWBRYANT@AOL.COM
- From: Michael Bryant <MBRYANT@central.weber.edu>
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