Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I love stories like this, LXXXIX

"Sports do not build character. They reveal it." - Heywood Hale Broun (and Vince Lombardi)

In high school sports it appears more and more that that's true:
What Are Your Children Learning? The Impact of High School Sports on the Values and Ethics of High School Athletes

REPORT REVEALS PROPENSITY OF HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETES TO LIE AND CHEAT WHEN THE STAKES ARE HIGH: Are Sports Fields Training Grounds for Next Generation’s Corporate and Political Villains?

National survey suggests many coaches, especially in football, baseball and basketball, are “teaching kids to cheat and cut corners”

LOS ANGELES (February 16, 2007) – According to a report released this week by the Josephson Institute of Ethics, the values of young athletes are dramatically impacted by their sports experience, often for the worse.

The report, “What Are Your Children Learning? The Impact of High School Sports on the Values and Ethics of High School Athletes,” summarizes the responses of 5,275 high school athletes to a written survey administered in 2005 and 2006.

Michael Josephson, president of the nonprofit Josephson Institute and founder of the national program, CHARACTER COUNTS!, said the report contains both good and bad news for parents and school administrators. “The good news is that the majority of high school athletes trust and admire their coaches and are learning positive life skills and good values from them. They are less cynical about ethical issues and less likely to steal than their classmates.

“The bad news,” Josephson added, “is that many coaches -- particularly in the high profile sports of boys’ basketball, baseball and football -- are teaching kids how to cheat and cut corners. Both boys and girls are more likely to cheat in school and far too many are willing to cheat in sports and engage in other dishonest, deceptive and dangerous practices without regard for the rules or traditional notions of fair play and sportsmanship. There is reason to worry that the sports fields of America are becoming the training grounds for the next generation of corporate and political villains and thieves.”

I just report 'em folks.

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