TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

January 27, 2014

How about a little basketball etiquette

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The Times-Tribune

CORBIN — It’s been a while since I took advantage of this space to voice my opinion, but something has been bugging me for a while now.

Before I get too deep in to the subject, I want to make it clear that I’m in no way singling out any particular team, player or coach. The thoughts rattling around in my head are based on a wide range of teams that I have watched locally, across the state and even on national television.

• It’s gotta be the shoes!

It may seem a bit silly to some, but one of my biggest pet peeves is when basketball teams don’t have matching shoes.

I know the shoe doesn’t make the player, but the same case can be argued as to why not wear the same shoe the rest of the team is wearing.

I know this is not always the case, but a lot of times it comes down to kids trying to get noticed a little more than the next guy. Well, if you want to get noticed, go out and work harder and I guarantee someone will notice.

In my opinion, the matching shoe situation is another way to show unity as a group because after all, basketball is a team sport.

You can also argue that a team shouldn’t have to wear matching shoes to be a team, but it comes down to perception. If an opposing team shows up and sees a team that is clad in a bunch of crazy colors, they probably don’t see that team the same as they would a team that is matching to the T.

This may be silly, but it’s my opinion on the matter.

• Tuck it in

Whatever sport you’re playing, athletes need to be taught respect from the word go.

Not only respect for the game, but also the coach, their opponent, officials and even the fans watching the game.

When a kid walks out on to the basketball court (I’ll use basketball because that’s what season is in play) they need to look the part of a basketball player. I can’t count how many times during games and even warm-ups that a player has come out with their jersey not tucked in.

The first thing that comes to mind is that the particular player is a sloppy person. I know that’s a snap judgment, but that’s the opinion I’ve developed in that situation.

Technically speaking, when a player is on the court they have a job to do, so a game can be considered work. Well, if you had a uniform policy at your work and you showed up out of uniform, you wouldn’t be allowed to work. The same would come in to play if I were a coach.

If one of my players showed up looking sloppy and not ready to play, I wouldn’t let them play. Maybe a quarter on the bench to see all the players who are properly dressed would help get the point across.

• Tattoos

This one of course applies mainly to high school players because college and NBA players basically have free reign to get away with anything.

If a high school player has a tattoo on his or her arm, I don’t think it would be too much of a stretch to make them wear sleeves to cover them. Whether they need short sleeves or long sleeves, they should be covered during a game.

A lot of the players wear sleeves on their arm anyway these days, although I’m not sure what purpose they serve other than standing out from the rest.

Well that’s that and I feel better now. I’ll probably get chewed out by a parent or coach for voicing my opinion, but the fact remains that it’s my opinion. Nothing more and nothing less.