February 1, 2013 by Wes Cronk in Livewire, Opinion with 1 comments
Last weekend’s T-Town incident has become a surprisingly divise issue, seemingly caused by wide disagreement on the larger implications of this singular event. In his Skyd op-ed, Andrew Roca, UCF’s head coach, makes a very strong point in noting that the eventual resolution of this conflict and the sportsmanship demonstrated after the initial dispute should not be overlooked.
One of the special aspects of ultimate that sets it apart from most other sports is the fact that it is still largely self-officiated, instilling a sense of responsibility and ownership of the game in players that enhances the entire experience.
But these particular players’ ability to resolve their issues shouldn’t be taken for granted. Yes, in this instance, the character and spirit of the athletes involved allowed everyone to quickly move forward without further incident but that isn’t always going to be the case. Sometimes, sportsmanship simply won’t get the job done and, in those cases, why not have a strong, systematic way to enforce player conduct? I applaud Adams and Browning for the way they worked everything out but this single piece of positive anecdotal evidence certainly shouldn’t be weighed so heavily that it prevents the ultimate community from having the broader, necessary conversation about how unsportsmanlike and dangerous play can be more effectively regulated.