There are many things written about what is wrong with sports. I think the worst thing about sports(except maybe people who write about what’s wrong with sports) is the fans. Most normal people like me(ha) enjoy watching the games and then go on with our lives. We may scream at the TV and the officials when the game is being played. We might post random stuff on Facebook during the game expressing pleasure or displeasure about the results. We might even have players, coaches and officials we don’t like for whatever reason(although I don’t still hate Christian Laettner). What we don’t do, however, is go to the insane level some people do. Below are a few examples:
Ashley Judd(I love her) posted on Twitter after the SEC championship game that she thought Arkansas played dirty. I’m not sure I agree with that, but she has a right to express her opinion. What followed was a stream of replies on Twitter calling her names and threatening her. She has vowed to press charges against these people and I hope she does.
Saturday UK played Cincinnati. Cincinnati has a player with anger management issues stemming from a childhood tragedy. He was ejected from the previous game and many people felt he should not have been allowed to play in the UK game. There were some instance during the UK game when it looked like he might be heading toward another ejection. Some people in the UK fan base couldn’t just let it go after the win. They tweeted insults to the player after the game. I’m embarrassed that they are associated with my school.
It’s not just casual fans either. During the Maryland/WVU game, the WVU coach’s daughters tweeted negative things about Dez Wells and the accusations against him at Xavier. He was accused of sexual assault, kicked out of school, later acquitted and settled out of court in a lawsuit against the school.
Fans have always been fanatical, hence the name, but social media has unfortunately made it easier for fans to directly target players, coaches and other fans. Here are some rules to live by:
1. Remember these players are people. In the above cases they are college kids. They are someone’s kid. Would you want people to say those things to your kid? No? Then don’t say it to others.
2. If you wouldn’t say it to their face, don’t say it on Twitter. Too many people have internet courage. They feel free to do stuff like this because they are somewhat anonymous and don’t expect consequences.
3. Remember it is just a game. It’s supposed to be fun. If you care so much that you are doing the above, re-evaluate your life priorities.
4. If you do stuff like this in real life and your internet life is just reflecting you seek help.