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Comments about ‘5 Union High players detained for vandalism one month after team-wide suspension’

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Published: Tuesday, Oct. 22 2013 10:20 p.m. MDT

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southmtnman
Provo, UT

"That doesn't mean what Labrum and his coaches did to try to instill good values in their players was wasted, Bennett said."

No, that's exactly what it means. The extreme, radical gimmick that caught the nation's attention was ill conceived and ineffective.

Dennis
Harwich, MA

Some learn, some learn the hard way, some never learn. Let's hope these kids can straighten out their priorities in life.

UtahBruin
Saratoga Springs, UT

@southmtnman

So since you think it was wasted, I guess your thought is to just let it all go and do nothing. If you followed the story from the beginning, Coach Labrum did not ask for the attention. At the same time, you have six players who act out now, what about all the other players who learned from it. For anyone to say it was "ill conceived and ineffective" is pure ignorance.

If anything, it affected the other players on the team in a positive way. It may have even affected in teenager who caught the story. To not do anything at all is bad parenting, and bad coaching. Kids like this need to be held accountable and people need to quit making excuses for them because they are teenagers. This is lost with today's adolescents. Parents no longer want to tech their kids, they want them to learn from experience. But when the experience goes wrong, they want to justify them and absolve them because they are teenagers. Wake up people!

mab93
Provo, UT

Five kids doing this one month later doesn't tell you anything. Character isn't developed in a day, and you can't force it on people that aren't willing to develop it. In my opinion, the important thing in regards to the football program is that the coach holds his players to a higher standard than others and isn't more lax on the more skilled players. When a coach pulls out a key player for what some might think isn't a major offense and applies rules consistently to all players then the team knows the standard they will be held to. Occasionally a few won't live up to it but most of the kids will rise to the higher standard. The long term results are the important thing, but by then it is old news.

ExTBird
Springville, US-UT

I was thrilled to see the coach make a stand when the first story broke. I was disappointed and just rolled my eyes when they suited up and played that same weekend. At the end of the day it was just a bunch of theatrics. I don't think the coach planned on all the attention, just like I don't think he planned on forfeiting that weeks game. If anything I think the national attention just encouraged the boys to do their community service for the wrong reasons. It wasn't about working on their character and change, it was about impressing Anderson Cooper and having that feel good ending. Which I think is what made it ultimately a waste of time.

If their behavior was bad enough to take the jersey away then it was bad enough to miss a game. If the lesson was suppose to be character > football then I think they failed. They never missed a beat, and now half a dozen of them are in serious trouble again. Real change requires real sacrifice. Next time I suggest ending the season early and maybe the point will actually get made.

UtahBruin
Saratoga Springs, UT

@ExTBird

I think it is pretty obvious that the story was not followed completely. There were boys who did not earn their jersey back and did not get to play in that Friday Homecoming game. To use theatrics is unreasonable and ignorant as I stated in my previous post. Again, Coach Labrum did not ask for the media attention, that was brought on elsewhere. Those kids who did not earn their jerseys back are the ones who suffered, those kids who are now in trouble are the ones who will suffer.

It amazes me how people can sit back and pick at a coach for doing something good for change. So for a few boys, six to be exact it did not sink in, and now those who supported the coaches efforts, exactly that, efforts, are now saying he was in it for theatrics and attention. That is just flat out ridiculous. Also, ExTBird, if while at Timpview, you had some players who behaved the same as these 6 or the others who did not get their jerseys back the first time. You would still support forfeiting your game? I don't think so.

ExTBird
Springville, US-UT

I don't hold Timpview to a different set a standards just because I played for them over a decade ago. I absolutely support any coach who puts decency, and respect above football. Even if that means the jerseys get put away for awhile. Even at Timpview.

Also, if I was coaching I wouldn't suspend the entire team unless I felt off-field behavior was bad enough to justify it. If Union only really had a few players acting up then the coach overstepped. If the problem was wide spread then he just wasted everyone's time. Picking up trash for a few days, and having some lectures on character isn't going have any lasting effect. If the problem was bad enough that a full suspension was needed then it was bad enough to justify missing a game. I know some players didn't get their jerseys back, but the fact remains that Union never actually skipped a beat. They still played that same week. I know the coach didn't seek the attention, but he still got it nonetheless. He either went too far, or not far enough. You could make arguments going both ways.

Rural sport fan
DUCHESNE, UT

ExTbird...if you think missing three days of practice isn't missing a beat, you apparently have no concept of what is involved in a week of football practice.

Basically, what ooach Labrum did was TOTALLY ignore preparing for their opponent, they didn't work on their offense, their defense, their special teams, or a game plan..all they did was work on the kids and their character.

As far as missing a game, do we all not understand that the UHSAA will fine a team for missing a game? Do we REALLY want the taxpayers to fork over $1500 or more, to somehow theoretically teach these kids some bigger lesson?

Instead of blaming the coach or his efforts, how about we blame the media, which sadly shows nearly every "jock" as a callous bully, and shows "pranks" like destroying a rival's fence as a fun, exciting activity, almost a right of passage, expected of every boy trying to be a man? We could even blame the state, since that was UEA weekend, no school...if there had been a game Friday, this may not have happened.

Or we could blame the kids, do what needs done, and move on.

Eagle78
Salt Lake City, UT

The fine for missing a game kind of supports the theory that the suspension was just for show. They weren't going to miss that game and get fined $1500+. I think calling it theatrics is a bit much since there is no way the coach would of known it would get national coverage. Or any coverage at all. I would agree that it was a empty threat.

Rural sport fan
DUCHESNE, UT

It wasn't theatrics at all. I firmly believe that if the kids suspended had not earned their uniforms, Coach Labrum would have played with any kids that did, and filled out the team with some of the freshmen that weren't suspended.

magoodna
sandy, UT

it wasnt theatrics, it was a coach doing what he thought was best for his kids and team at that time. EXTBIRD you are assuming that if they would have missed the game then they wouldnt have vandalized the fence. i dont see the connection betweent the two. the coach cant be blamed or praised for every action by every player. like has been previoulsy stated, " some kids learn the hard way."

EXTBIRD the view from you horse must be nice.

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