Current Events

November 3, 2017

This is the ninth year that I have been posting blogs twice a week – each Tuesday and Friday. A recent project required I go back through the postings of the eight previous years; and a sidebar of that project is this posting.

I rediscovered that in the fall of 2009, I was writing about topics that remain current today. For example,

  • August 18 – What new sports may be in the future of high school athletics?

  • August 25 – The prospects of 8-player football.

  • September 4 – Baseball pitching rules.

  • September 8 – Video streaming.

  • October 6 – Protection from head injuries.

  • November 17 – Foreign students.

  • November 20 – Football scheduling.

  • November 27 – Football Playoffs.

And on several occasions over the first six months, the topics were problems in school finance and the financial pressures on school sports, reasons for various eligibility rules, changes in playing rules to promote participant safety, tournament classification, and the need for stronger leadership on all levels of school sports.

All of these topics remain current. Proving once again, perhaps, that the more things change, the more they stay the same. Or, that there are no genuinely new topics.

Cheering for Sportsmanship

July 31, 2018

(This blog first appeared on on January 8, 2013.)

I try to start each new school year at the Michigan Interscholastic Press Association summer camp at Michigan State University. I talk briefly about who the MHSAA is and what it does; and then two or three dozen high school newspaper editors and writers ask me questions; and in doing so, they give me clues to what’s going on in our schools and what’s important to our students.

Several years ago, when I opened the session to questions, one young man asked: “Mr. Roberts, what’s your job?” I paused, and then said, “I guess I’m the head cheerleader for high school sports in Michigan.”

So then this precocious student asked: “Okay, what do you cheer for?”  With a briefer pause, this is some of what I said:

  • I cheer for sportsmanship that’s not merely good, but great.

  • I cheer for sportsmanship, not gamesmanship.

  • I cheer for playing by the rules, both the letter and the spirit.

  • I cheer for maximum effort to try to win each and every contest.

  • I don’t cheer for winning at any cost; I do cheer for learning at every opportunity.

  • I cheer for losing with grace and for winning with even greater grace, with humility and modesty.

  • I cheer for the lessons of victory and the even greater lessons of defeat.