Sometimes, football isn’t fair, just like life

Published 12:03am Sunday, October 27, 2013

In football, sometimes, you just get beaten. And beaten badly.

So it was with great curiosity that I read an article shared on my Facebook feed this past week of an alleged bullying report being filed after a Texas high school team defeated another Texas high school team 91-0.

Aledo High School was the winning team, and the poor victim was Western Hills High School as Aledo dished out the lopsided loss to Western Hill Oct. 18. Western Hill is currently 0-8 on the season and is losing games by an average score of 50-10, while Aledo is currently 8-0 and is winning games by an average score of 68-8.

In most cases, those two teams meeting could be referred to as the perfect storm. In the case of one Western Hills parent, it was seen as an act of bullying.

According to the Yahoo story I read, a bullying report was filed with Aledo’s school district, which now requires Aledo’s principal to “launch a full investigation into the bullying allegation.”

It’s worth mentioning that one commenter on the Yahoo story provided some possible context for the game. According to the commentor, all of Aledo’s starters were out by the end of the first quarter. By the third quarter, the third-string was playing, and officials were running the clock non-stop. The Yahoo story even quoted Western Hills head coach John Naylor saying Aledo’s coaching staff handled the game the correct way.

So we can infer that Aledo’s coaching staff wasn’t trying to run up the score from Naylor’s comments. In that case, what’s the problem? The other team was just that much better. Life isn’t fair — just ask the millions of athletes that gave 100 percent to make in in the pros and couldn’t because of a lack of talent. That’s a valuable lesson for the Western Hills players to learn.

But some parent supposedly felt their child and his teammates were victims of a bunch of big, mean football players. Instead of using the game as a teaching opportunity, they felt the need to shield their child from one of life’s harsh realities.

Not only does this make a mockery of the bullying issue — which is a real and serious issue in schools across the country — but it also does nothing to prepare their children for the real world.

Locally, we may have seen an example of a similar instance when Tallulah Academy decided to forfeit its football game against Trinity Episcopal Day School last week. According to Saints head coach Josh Loy, Tallulah told him they decided to forfeit because they only had 14 players, five of whom were freshman.

Loy correctly pointed out that you only needed 11 to field a team. Look, if half those players were hurt and/or sick, I could understand. But if they were all healthy, there is no excuse for backing out of a game. Trinity is currently undefeated and winning many of its game by a wide margin, while Tallulah is currently 1-8.

Again, if there were injuries and sicknesses, that’s totally different. But if Tallulah backed out simply because it didn’t want to get bludgeoned by the Saints, then frankly, that’s a sorry decision by Tallulah officials. If a lack of numbers is a detriment, do what Chamberlain-Hunt Academy did and cancel the season before it begins. Don’t wait until the last game and decide you just can’t take it anymore. Play out your schedule.

Dear parents: Please don’t slip into this madness and instead use these games — win or lose — to teach your children valuable life lessons. Our country’s future will be better off for it.