Roy Exum: Sportsmanship And More Stuff

Tuesday, November 19, 2013
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

I’ve got a lot of notes in my pocket to share but first we are going to start with a lesson in sportsmanship from a video taken Thursday night in Saudi Arabia that has now gone viral around the world. It comes during a First Division soccer game between Al-Nahda and Al-Ittihad. You’ll see Al-Nahda’s goal keeper Taisar Antaif receiving a back pass and then realizing his shoe was untied, not allowing him to kick properly.

He tries to get the referee’s attention as Al-Ittihad striker Jobson races towards him. His heavy gloves would not allow him to tie his shoe. That’s when Jobson ignores the ball, leans down, and ties his opponent’s shoe – listen to the crowd!

But there is more. The referee decides the goalie held the ball too long as the kindness was being performed (what a jerk!) and awarded Al-Ittihad team an indirect kick inside the area.  The score tied, 2-2, the ensuing goal would give Al-Ittihad the lead. But no … the Al-Ittihad team instead boots the ball harmlessly to the side rather than take any unfair advantage.

For the record, the game ended in a 4-4 tie and what the sports announcer yelled was this: “This is the kind of high sportsmanship that deserves praise from everyone … He could have taken the shot if he’d wanted to, but he opted for sportsmanship instead!”

* * *

Six women from Vanderbilt University have filed a formal complaint with the Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, that alleges the prominent Nashville institution has responded poorly to reports of sexual assault. The filing comes on the heels of a terrible incident in June where an unconscious Vanderbilt female student was allegedly raped by some members of the football team.

According to a report in the Nashville Tennessean, the Department of Education confirmed its Office of Civil Rights had received the filing, said to be in excess of 70 pages, but Vanderbilt officials were not given a copy. School officials did announce they would assist with an investigation if the government agency feels there should be one after studying the complaint.

The report contains information of how the victims were treated by school officials after they reported the crimes and it is said that an investigation would examine if Vanderbilt violated Federal laws such as Title IX and/or the Clery Act, which requires universities to be very responsive to sexual attacks and accurately report all crime statistics. Yale University was fined $155,000 for Clery Act violations earlier this year.

The four football players who were charged with raping a coed in Vanderbilt’s Gillette Hall will be tried in the summer of 2014, and last week defense attorneys asked for all records of text messages and emails between the athletes and the coaching staff.

* * *

The Virginia State football team was declared ineligible for the Div. II playoffs Monday after up to five of its players attacked the opposing quarterback – get this -- during a celebration luncheon on Friday. The post-season ban was from the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association, which governs a number of predominately black schools in North Carolina, Virginia and Pennsylvania.

Rudy Johnson, who guided Winston-Salem State to a 9-1 record and was preparing to face Virginia State on Saturday, was in the restroom of Winston-Salem’s Anderson Center when the visiting players “beat him up pretty badly,” according to one witness.

The championship game between the two CIAA teams was cancelled and yesterday it was announced Winston-Salem State will advance into the playoffs, hosting Slippery Rock. Johnson is listed as “doubtful” for this week’s game.

* * *

In case you are interested, the “Mother of all Iron Bowls” was just assigned a 3:30 p.m. kickoff for Nov. 30 when unbeaten Alabama travels to challenge once-beaten Auburn. In other television listings announced Monday, Tennessee’s remaining games against Vanderbilt and Kentucky will both start at 7 p.m., Texas A&M will play LSU at 3:30 p.m. this week and the Georgia-Georgia Tech game will be at 3:30 on Nov. 30.

The Ole Miss-Mississippi State game will begin at 7:00 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day (next Thursday) and on “Black Friday”  Arkansas will play at LSU at 2:30 p.m. In two other games Nov. 30, Florida State will play Florida at noon and Clemson will renew its rivalry with South Carolina at 7:00 p.m.

* * *

The Gallaudet Bison will be one of 24 Division III schools that begin the playoffs for the NCAA championship this Saturday and it is the first time ever a team for the small yet world-renowned university for the hearing impaired has entered post-season play. How great is that!

Gallaudet is the only university in the world for the hearing-impaired and was founded by an Act of Congress in 1864. Abraham Lincoln signed its federal charter and today about 1,200 students attend full-time classes. The Bison players use hand signing to call plays and no players wear hearing aids during games. The Bison (9-1) face Hobart (9-0) while, much closer to home, Hampden-Sydney (8-2) will visit Maryville (8-2).

royexum@aol.com


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