November 07, 2011
Coaches try all kinds of different things to motivate their players from time to time. Sometimes the off-the-wall ideas are brilliant team-building exercises. Sometimes they don't work out quite as they were intended.
Then there are incidents like the one you see in the video below, where Roseville (Mich.) Middle School's football coach decided to helmet up for his team's final practice of the year and force three kids to try to tackle him.
What the coach in question thought he was going to accomplish with the drill is anyone's guess. Instead, his idea for a drill broke the collarbone of one of the players he hand picked to try to stop him. According to ClickonDetroit.com, he may now end up facing a lawsuit from the parents of the injured player, 13-year-old Alex Androsuk.
Calling the drill a "tackle drill" might be a bit of an exaggeration, too. It was more of a "coach wants to re-live his glory years and decides to run over his players" drill, which was made even more foolish by having his fellow coach videotape the entire sordid episode. In fact, the players called on to make the tackle didn't really stand much of a chance of stopping their coach when he lowered his shoulder. That's proof that he's still an impressive physical force, at least when compared with 13-year-olds.
Considering the fact that he reportedly actively chose his three prospective tacklers (the rationale behind the three he chose is unknown), it seems pretty much impossible to defend, whether the drill was planned to be "fun" for the kids involved or not.
"It hurt real bad. It was hard to breathe," Androsuk told ClickonDetroit.com.
Not surprisingly, the Androsuk family is intimating they will not accept any outcomes from a forthcoming investigation into the coach's actions that don't result in the end of his tenure with the program. It's hard to find fault with that logic. Any coach deciding to strap on a helmet and essentially run over pre-teen kids like a dump truck probably doesn't deserve to be working with children.
"No adult should be hitting a kid, with a helmet at a practice [or] whatever," Bernard Androsuk, Alex's father, told ClickonDetroit.com. "I expected both coaches to be fired, point blank.That's what I expected, because what they did was disgusting. It's appalling what they did."
For the time being, Roseville Schools athletic director Major Mickens said that safety "is our number one priority," and that a decision about whether the existing football coaches will be brought back for the 2012 season won't be made until next fall.
Let's hope that Mickens chooses his actions better than his coaches did.