TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Local News

October 22, 2012

Corbin coach releases statement

Regards recent issue over team’s uniform policy

CORBIN — By Jeff Noble / Staff Writer

Corbin High School’s Head Football Coach, Steve Jewell, released a statement Friday in regards to the recent issue over the team’s uniform policy.

It comes a day after Corbin Independent Schools ruled that Jewell was right to discipline players over an incident involving the wearing of a pink hand towel and pink gloves during last Friday’s game with Bell County. That decision came after an investigation was conducted by school and central office officials Thursday.

Released by the Corbin school district, Jewell’s statement began by saying, “To fulfill a personal responsibility entirely separate from the Corbin Independent School district, I am compelled to address the recent event concerning the discipline of a Corbin High School football player. There has been an exorbitant amount of information put out about this incident, not all of it factual.”

The statement continued, “Many have claimed that I crushed an effort by a student to raise breast cancer awareness.  I deeply regret that false perception. Nothing could be further from the truth. We cannot respect, support, or honor cancer victims and their families enough. I sincerely apologize for any undue distress this misunderstanding has caused the student and his family or any other families touched by this common enemy we all share, cancer. Every year since breast cancer awareness decals have been available (about five years), each Redhound football player has worn one on his helmet for the season as a show of support.  Perhaps those decals are not visible to some, so I have purchased pink wrist bands so all players will also have those to wear.”

According to Jewell’s statement, “This issue was never about a color or lack of support, but about team standards and mutuality. My coaching staff and I work hard to foster a team spirit among the players as opposed to a spirit of individuality. Part of that teamwork spirit is discipline including a standard dress code as specific as the right kind of socks, which we buy every year if necessary, hand towels that meet NFHS standards, etc. Players grow up understanding specific expectations and team management rules. Those rules are reiterated often and have consequences when broken. There is a protocol if players want to make a request beforehand concerning dress code. The request is made to the coach, who then brings the request before all the players. If the request is honored, the team as a whole participates. That is why all players have decals and wristbands.”

Jewell concluded his statement by saying, “Being successful in promoting team spirit is a tedious job, but the benefits are monumental. Team spirit, of which proper discipline is a part, leads to average players playing above average. Nothing would make me happier than someone donating 60 pairs of pink gloves for the entire team to wear in support of breast cancer awareness. Better yet, considering the expense of gloves, donating that money to cancer research would be the best use of funds.”

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