A couple of days ago, one of my favorite childhood coaches made the news for some controversial comments based on athletes being taught to quit. You can find the video containing those comments here.
In the video he says that last year there was “over 800 Division I transfers” and that “we are teaching [the student athletes] how to quit.”
I couldn’t agree more with what he’s saying. People that disagree have some valid points but here is their take vs my take…
Them: They aren’t getting paid so they can do whatever they want.
Me: Well technically on average they are getting about 25-30 thousand dollars a year for school.
Them: Tubby can leave whenever he wants. Why can’t the athlete?
Me: He has paid his dues in his profession, and worked for several years to get the right to do that.
Them: In real life you can quit a job and get another job with no penalties.
Me: Yes, but every single job you hold, the boss will eventually have a policy you disagree with. If you want food, gas, a house, and other basic necessities you have to get over it.
While I see and understand the arguments for both sides, I have to stand with Coach on this one.
When I was playing sports I remember having a conversation with my dad that was very similar to the one Tubby refers to having had with his father.
I told my parents I wasn’t happy with what the coach was telling me in practice, and didn’t see why I wasn’t playing more. My dad (thankfully) said something along the lines of, “Don’t ever come to me with anything like that again. He’s the coach and what he says goes. If you want to play, get your ass in that gym, work hard and get better. Everybody has to start from the bottom, the people who make it are the ones that put there head down and work with no complaints.”
That is a lesson I needed then and most kids today need to learn.
Some parents too.
While the situations are a little different, (transferring to a different University and me getting more playing time in High School) I think the lessons that can be learned are the same. Kids need to learn what it means to work hard and earn something.
At the end of the day those athletes are getting an education for free.
When they go to a job whether it be the NBA or a factory, there will always be somebody in charge of them. I can promise their bosses will say things to them that they don’t agree with or like, but until they’ve earned their stripes they will have to listen or their employer will find somebody else who will.