Tuesday, March 4, 2008

My Evening Last Night

I think I read a few weeks back in a WithLeather post how all the crazy coaches and soccer moms live in Ohio. I can't agree more. I coach grade school basketball at a local catholic grade school, and no it's not the "athlete's massage" type of coaching that I'm sure all you are thinking about. But I volunteer and coach 7th grade boys hoops. Last night we had a game in a tournament that we host each year and we then turn around and donate the money to a charitable cause. The first game of the tourney got underway last night and we were playing another catholic grade school from the west side of Cleveland. The game was close, my team should have gotten waxed beacuse they played like some 3rd grade girls, but none the less we were in it all the way.

At the end of the 4th quarter, we were down 2 points. One of the guys on my team was fouled in the act so he got 2 shots. He misses the first and makes the second. Now down only 1 with about 1:30 left in the game. The other team's coach tries run the proverbial stall, to no avail. They turn the ball over and we take it the distance for an easy 2. We are now up 1 with about 0:45 left. Now the other team is in the hurry-up and frantically trying to score. Instead of calling a quick thirty, the coach just tries to scream plays in and under our basket, they turn the ball over and we get another quick 2. We are now up 3 with about 0:10 seconds left. The coach still doesn't call a time out and we steal the ball again and we try to stall and they go into foul mode. We are in the bonus, so they foul and we go to the line.

The coach for the other team tells the ref explicitly, (I could even hear it on the other side of the court) that if we miss the first shot and they get the rebound that they will be taking time out (finally). Then we proceed to miss the foul shot and they secure the rebound and the ref grants the coach his time out with 0:07 seconds left in the game.

Here is where things start to get really interesting. The coach denies calling the time out. The best part of it all is that the kid who grabbed the rebound turned to the ref and asked for a time out. But that for some reason is not relevant to this story. The coach gets so irate at the granting of a time out that he gets in the face of the ref. The assistant coaches finally secure the coach and calm him down. So he does his best at drawing up a last second play (it worked as well as a Mike Brown last second play). They do their thing and mess it up and lose by 3.

You'd think the story would be done here, but its not. I throw some high fives to my guys for getting lucky and pulling off a W. We start to lineup to shake the other team's hand when I see the other coach shoot directly for the scorers table, which is were the ref was standing. The dude was steaming mad. I look at my two buddies who I coach with and I said "Oh God" or something to that extent and the coach starts pointing his finger at the ref dropping a string of insults and expletives. I jet over there and right as I get there, the coach stops pointing his finger and quenches his fist and rears back. I grab his arm back and the AD of the school grabs his other arm and we just hold him back. I can't tell if the fist was more a form of threat or if he really intended to introduce us to Mr. Thunder and Mr. Lightning.

This ref was not wrong and held his temper in check for the most part. But this ref was a younger, black guy, who is JACKED. This guy looked real athletic and ready for this guy to give him a reason to act in self defense. I just couldn't believe that this coach wanted to make his point be known so sternly.

The way I see it:
There were 0:07 second left in the game and the guy had 3 time outs left. It's not like there was 2 minutes left in the game and this was the guy's last time out. He retained possession of the ball and had a chance to try to draw up a play to tie the game and force over time. Why did this guy make such a big deal out of one time out? Because he wanted to be a dick. I hate that shit. Its so stupid. There is nothing more that I wanted than for that coach to take a swing and then get "blowed up" by this ref. It would have given me a chance to live out one of my dreams. That dream is to quote Chris Tucker in Friday "You got knocked the fuck out... gimme my goddamn money... yeah payback's a motherfucker". WHY ARE PEOPLE SO STUPID WHEN IT COMES TO YOUTH ATHLETICS? People calm down. It's not about your W-L record, its about having fun. Chances are about 99.999999999999999999% accurate that none of the players that you're coaching are going to go pro in their respective sports. Way to lead by example.

No comments: