Unruly behavior ruins yet another youth sporting event

Unruly behavior ruins yet another youth sporting event
June 30
09:33 2022

For years I have been saying that there are some parents and coaches who have been ruining youth sports with their bad behavior on the sidelines and in the stands. This behavior seems to have progressed even more now that we have come out of the pandemic and I don’t think we have seen the worst of it.

Over the weekend I saw a post from a Facebook friend of mine that is a youth sports coach that stated the tournament his team was participating in had to be shut down because of the bad behavior of parents and coaches and that is a damn shame.

The football tournament was Summer Shine, which showcased some high-level youth football in tournament style play. Unfortunately for the kids, the parents and coaches were so out of control that the organizers were forced to shut the tournament down. Because of the horrible conduct from the parents, this message was sent out from the organizers:

“Due to multiple altercations during the event between coaches and parents of multiple teams, we have been directed by the North Carolina State Police, Cabarrus County, Charlotte PD, and the Superintendent of Schools to shut down the remaining tournament portions. Unfortunately, they fear that some parents and coaches will retaliate after witnessing today’s altercations and affirm the safety of the players is paramount in the decision. We have protested this situation with all vested entities; consequently, the requests were declined on all levels. Again, it reiterated for the SAFETY OF ALL, Summer Shine 2022 is dismissed close of business today.

“For those that didn’t have any issues this weekend, we thank you for your professionalism, courtesy, and dedication extended to our youth athletes and event. We are TRULY saddened that the acts of a few have penalized the kids who have worked so hard to play in the Championship games tomorrow. All teams in Championship will have free registrations in Winter Shine Nov 2022 and Summer Shine in June 2023.”

After reading this, all I could do was literally shake my head in disgust. It’s hard to fathom that there were so many problems that the authorities had to force the organizers to shut everything down in fear of further violence.  

These are the same parents that are out here screaming that “it’s all about the kids” and stuff like that, but as soon as something they disagree with happens, we see this type of behavior. I wonder, do these parents ever think about the ramifications of their actions and how it affects their kids who are watching them?

Last week at Summer Shine, a friend of mine witnessed one of the physical altercations on one of the fields. He stated there was a fight on the field and as the coaches were breaking it up, a parent came onto the field and started pummeling one of the coaches right in front of everyone. My friend told me once it was over, the coach was bloody and battered.  

I wonder if that parent thought about the lasting memory all of those children will have from that incident. Ten years from now, many of them will remember this incident more than any athletic achievement that they had on the field and that’s a shame. I hope that parent was arrested and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Apparently this was only one of the situations that happened last week. According to several people I spoke with, there were incidents at every location the tournament was being held, which is why I understand why the tournament was canceled. When it gets to the point where even law enforcement’s presence is not enough to deter bad behavior, it’s best to just cancel anything else because the end result could be very bad.

There was another violent incident that was shared from a parent on Facebook. This parent shared her story with her son saying, “Today as I’m teaching & speaking to my son about having good sportsmanship, respect and letting him know he did well and don’t beat himself up, “YALL WON.” The opponent team is beside us walking to the car to leave as well, the coach feels the need to jump in my convo with myself and my child and said y’all ain’t win sh*t and tells me my son already beating me & he will too…. So if you know me you know…. 

“This man tells his children that we  just played against to go get my child, the whole team runs up on mason, one kid steals off, needless to say none of my son teammates were around because we be out lol but as coach’s this is what is going on fr fight because you lose it just happens too much and it’s bad! It was the mosteEmbarrassing feeling ever at that very moment to be black.”

Of course, there are two sides to every story but even if some of this is true, that coach should never be in charge of young men ever again. As a man, I find it very disheartening that any man would speak to a woman and her child in that manner and then proceed to tell his players to attack another child. Once again, I wasn’t there and there are two sides to every story but if this is true, we are very lost as a people.

I wrote about this issue over two years ago and since then the behavior of some of these parents and coaches has gotten progressively worse. I am afraid of what will happen next because these parents and coaches have become so bold to think they can do whatever and say whatever they want without any ramifications.  

I suggest they start to adopt a zero-tolerance policy at these school games and tournaments because if you start to ban unruly parents and coaches, I guarantee we will start to see a change in behavior from others. We can’t just allow these people to continue behaving in this manner.

When did youth sports stop being about the kids? These parents and coaches have turned something that was supposed to be about teaching youth responsibility, sportsmanship and hard work, into something about them. I think if we eliminate those bad parents and coaches from the equation, we can get back to what makes youth sports great again.

And for those parents and coaches that are out here making a complete and utter ass out of themselves in the stands and on the sidelines, please stop it! It’s embarrassing not only to you, but also your child. Before you decide to start yelling profanity or hurling threats, or even trying to belittle other children on the court, try and think about what you are there for.  

We are all there to enjoy the wonderful talents that these young people have to put on display for us parents and fans. Stop making a spectacle out of yourself and taking that attention away from the kids. If you can’t control yourself, keep your ass home, seriously. 

Do better as coaches and parents because these children deserve the best from us as they give their best on the field and court of play.



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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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