Coaches share how they would handle Anthem protests

November 15, 2016 / Athletic AdministrationCoaching
In October, Coach & Athletic Director asked coaches how they would react if their team or players said they wanted to stage a protest during the National Anthem. In the survey, 7.3% of coaches said they had already been approached by one of their players about protesting, and only 27% of coaches said they would not punish an athlete who wanted to sit or kneel during the Anthem. Nearly 20% said they would suspend the player and 14.4% said they would reduce their playing time.

anthemchartHere are the results of the survey along with some of the responses.

• There would be repercussions, but I cannot give a specific punishment because we have not started our season and have not talked about how we will act during the a Nation Anthem.

I would give them an ultimatum. Either stand and you can continue to play or sit and you will stay there the entire game.

Explain to them how they got right to have that choice and why it’s disrespectful to the men and women who have sacrificed so much to keep that flag flying.

It would depend upon if they defied any team rules. If I fail to address the issue and they kneel or sit, it would be hard for me to justify punishment if they didn’t know there would be ramifications.

I would explain the distraction it is causing to everyone who has worked so hard towards a goal. I would then give them suggestions of a more appropriate place to protest.

I understand they are trying to get attention for an issue, but it is not helping to solve the issue. The professional athletes should be talking with government officials and police departments to see what they can do to help solve the problem.

I think it is ridiculous. This crap about using the stage to expose issues. When will it stop. When you act like a victim, you will always be just that. I am not saying everything is perfect, because it isn’t. But, it never will be.

Need to stop it’s a disgrace and disrespectful to our country. That flag is a sign of freedom and what are soldiers have died for to give us the freedoms we have today. So it needs to be respected or players can move to other countries and play.

I don’t like it whatsoever. I have a military person come in and talk to our team about what the National Anthem means to them and what it feels like to fight and represent our country. There are other ways to stand up and be a leader for a cause you hold dear to your heart. I don’t want our kids to be followers, I want them to be leaders and represent more than themselves when they play, including how they represent themselves both on and off the court.

They are not violent, unruly protests so I have no problem with it even though I do not agree with it. I would prefer that they express their feelings individually on social media rather than do something that many people find offensive and disrespectful.

I totally understand the issue(s) at hand and respect a player’s right to express him/herself. However, athletics is a privilege, not a legal right. At our level (high school) choices must be made with the ideas that there will be consequences and that athletes not only represent themselves but also our program and our school.

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