Give everyone a trophy

I think all kids should get a trophy. Why not? If spending another few bucks makes a kid’s day and enhances their experience, I’m all for it.

But what about real-life? Everyone doesn’t get a trophy in real-life. Sure, they do. Right now, your boss is trying to figure out a way to give everyone something other than their regular paycheck for the holidays.

It may take the form of a check, a gift card or something else. Nevertheless, you will probably get something from your employer you did not earn over the next couple of weeks. And that’s OK.

There is nothing wrong with making people feel wanted, respected, appreciated and loved. This includes kids.

Take it from a person who has purchased his share of trophies. Awards are not a matter of merit as much as they are a matter of budget – especially on the youth level.

If your kid is in a tournament that only gives awards to the top three places, I’ll bet you dollars to donuts it’s because the director didn’t want to spring for another two or more trophies.

Here’s another thing I’ve learned: You can give kids the speech about competition being better at one meet versus the next, but kids love going to contests that give the biggest and coolest-looking trophies.

Motivation is where you find it.

Don’t.

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Don’t complain about playing time.

Don’t argue with athletes, parents and coaches.

Don’t curse out the official.

Don’t fight with other fans.

Don’t bet on the kids (Yes, that’s a thing).

Don’t tell your kids what they can’t do.

Don’t call the kids stupid or worse.

Don’t drone on about the game that just ended.

Don’t worship your son.

Don’t ignore your daugher.

Don’t tell them how much everything costs.

Don’t be a jerk.

 

Behaving like Doc Rivers will get you thrown out of the league

Media outlets, social and otherwise, continue to tout Doc Rivers’ epic meltdown from earlier this week. If you haven’t seen it, here’s video of the L.A. Clippers head coach in all his glory.

Let me be clear: If you act like Doc Rivers did in this video, your team will likely have to forfeit the game and your team may be thrown out of the league. Youth leagues are becoming less and less tolerant of parents and coaches behaving like infants with full diapers.

Here are some things we should all understand when it comes to professional leagues versus youth leagues, particularly in this situation.

Although Clippers assistant coach Sam Cassell and center DeAndre Jordan appear to be restraining Rivers, they are not. If Cassell and Jordan magically disappeared, Rivers was not going to charge the referees and possibly assault them.

There is a pro wrestling factor involved in professional coach meltdowns. Crowds like to see coaches show fire and the coach performs according to the level of crowd excitement. However, the coach is not about to jeopardize millions of dollars, one of the premier jobs in sports and his freedom by fighting an official.

Your position as 5th grade basketball coach is not as precious, though. You can and will be replaced by the very next living, breathing , mentally-stable person who wants to work with kids. No one called the police on Doc Rivers, but you will be fitted for a new orange uniform.

Know the difference between reality and make-believe. Stay in the game for your kids and keep your freedom for your family.

 

Giving Thanks on #GivingTuesday

Now that you have shopped on Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday, we hope you will consider a donation to the Sportsmanship Foundation on this Giving Tuesday. The Sportsmanship Foundation’s signature event, the Musial Awards and its companion program, Musial Moments, are named for baseball and sportsmanship immortal, Stan “The Man” Musial.

Please give $6 or more in honor of Stan’s number 6 to the Sportsmanship Foundation by clicking on this link. The Sportsmanship Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, so your donation is tax deductible.

The St. Louis Sports Commission’s Sportsmanship Foundation creates positive environments for kids to play sports so they remain active and lead healthier, happier lives.

The Sportsmanship Brigade, Coach It Right! Clinics, Play It Right! Clinics, the Sportsmanship Scholarship and Team Players Program reach thousands of coaches and kids each year with the goal of making the sports experience better for everyone.

Musial Moments, our newest, and arguably most successful program to date, has directly impacted more than 7,000 kids in 25 St. Louis schools and youth organizations since its 2015 inception.

We closed a recent Musial Moments assembly with a message centered on giving thanks. Please take a few minutes and watch the video below on the topic. Thank you so much for your support of the Sportsmanship Foundation and we wish you and yours a healthy and happy holiday season.

 

 

 

Bullying is always wrong

We had a great time with the students of Sherwood Elementary during our Musial Moments assembly on Tuesday morning. Β Please check out the video below on our lesson about three things that will never change.

Musial Moments is a fun, interactive and impactful 45-minute presentation that motivates students to care about sportsmanship and to be good to those around them. Musial Moments is free of charge to any school or youth organization. For booking information, please email salexander@stlsports.org or call 314-345-5130.

Sights and sounds from the 2016 Musial Awards

Last Saturday night was the most inspiring in sports. The Musial Awards, named for baseball immortal, Stan “The Man” Musial, showcased the stars of sportsmanship. Who are the stars of sportsmanship? These are people who give of their time, talent and treasure to do something extraordinary for someone else.

Social media was abuzz as the most inspiring night in sports was also date night, family night, and hero night. Check out some of the sights and sounds from honorees, attendees and volunteers below.

And if you weren’t able to join us at the Peabody Opera House on Saturday, be sure to catch the Musial Awards broadcast on Newschannel 5 in St. Louis on Wednesday, December 21 at 7 p.m. with a rebroadcast at 9 a.m. on Christmas Day.

So glad to share last night with my nephews @_kcatch_, bro @catchbball, hubby @pf_ds & our family friends. Such an honor to be an award recipient at this year's @musialawards with so many other inspirational people. 😍 With so much going on in the world, it's awesome to share the stage and hear the stories of the good. Thank u to everyone who chose me for this prestigious award. I am truly honored and so blessed to have had my family there with me. Big shout out to my older nephews & Lil brother, @brycecatch, @maleekcatchings, Kale, Jayce and @kanoncatchings. So much of your lives has been consumed by my life- both on and off the court. Thank u for being there for me thru the ups and downs and for always claiming me as your auntie/sis! I'm so proud of each of you in the young men that you have become. I'm so blessed to be a part of your journey and now have time to support each of you. Through the ups and downs… good and bad, I will ALWAYS be here by your side! Love you guys!! 😘😘😘 #LoveMyFam #ProudAuntie #ProudSis #Inspire #PassingTheTorch #SoBlessed

A photo posted by Catch Me If U Can 24 (@catchin24) on

Elections have consequences…for our kids

When I fell and scraped my knee as a kid, my mom told me not to pick at it or the thing would never heal. She said picking reopens wounds and causes infections – which makes the injury worse than before.

America has wounds older than the country itself. Racism, misogyny and xenophobia are old sores. We have periods where we let them heal for awhile, then we start to pick at them again.

On Election Day, 2016, we ripped the whole scab off.

Adults, who often pay lip service to what they do for their kids, didn’t think this one through. I know. I should to stick sports and stuff involving kids directly, and not what I think will happen. OK, how about this gem from my high school alma mater involving student-athletes?

A friend of mine, who is a teacher and parent, posted this on Facebook late last week. Warning: While edited for content, this post does contain material readers may find objectionable.

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No matter who you voted for, our kids have been negatively affected by our behavior over the election season. Bullying, harassment and degradation in schools and on sports teams has increased nationwide since last Tuesday.

A lot in our country has changed, but the mission of the St. Louis Sports Foundation has not. We create positive environments for kids to play sports so they remain active and lead healthier, happier lives.

If your kids need an inspiring program that will help them refocus on and appreciate the positive principles instilled in them by their parents, teachers and coaches, then look into the Musial Moments program for your school or youth organization.

Musial Moments is a fun, interactive and impactful 45-minute presentation that motivates kids to care about sportsmanship and to be good to those around them. We encourage kids to treat everyone with love and respect. The program is free for any school or youth organization. For booking information, please call 314-345-5130 or email salexander@stlsports.org.