Marcus Not-So-Smart, but fan dumber

Fan-shoving incident shows how sports lovers need more restraint

  • Follow Editorials

Led by 24-hour cable TV and radio, the sports chatter business has become one of America’s leading industries. They have a lot of time to fill, so they dissect everything.

Every. Little. Thing. Was LeBron James right or wrong to order scrambled eggs for breakfast? The debate is on!

That’s only a slight exaggeration.

Still, some topics do warrant some analysis – such as the recent fan-pushing by Oklahoma State basketball star Marcus Smart.

Smart tumbled into fan seating on a play, and while getting up was verbally assaulted by a grown Texas Tech fan. Smart shoved the man with both hands. He’s apologized, pretty remorseful-like, and was suspended for three important games.

The fan in question, Jeff Orr, also has apologized and has “suspended” himself for the remainder of the season. His apology, too, seemed sincere and contrite.

There was some disagreement over just what he said to Smart to prompt the push; Smart initially claimed Orr had used a racial slur, while Orr has denied it.

But what’s more important than what was said is that it was said. Neither party argues with the fact that it was abusive and shouldn’t have been said.

Conventional wisdom in this country is that fans who buy tickets to games have an absolute right to say whatever they want. Maybe technically, to a point. But in our view, that doesn’t give them the
license to verbally abuse anyone on a personal basis – particularly college kids, no matter how
talented or big or celebrated.

It’s time fans showed a little restraint, and
police their own conduct.

Football fans are probably the worst, especially when alcohol is involved. It’s sad when stadiums have to have holding cells for the out-of-control jerks.

Yes, superstars like Marcus Smart willingly sign up for the spotlight. They’re grown-ups, physically. We don’t have much sympathy for them, particularly with Smart’s lack of self-control. Players should never attack fans. Ever. Their chiseled muscles are capable of more damage than they know, and their station in life demands self-discipline.

But they are, after all, still very young men, engaged in a passionate, physical, sometimes hot-tempered athletic pursuit with all their beings – and they’re under a microscope almost every second. They even have to watch what they write in cyberspace, though their little classmates do not. They live and play under a double standard.

Verbally assaulting them is not only uncivil and wrong, it’s foolhardy – something akin to going to Pamplona and running into the bulls.

Adults in the stands ought to have a little lower standards for those young people, and a little higher standard for themselves.

Comments (12) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
ymnbde
9696
Points
ymnbde 02/18/14 - 07:11 am
1
0
they should look inward

and you didn't write the actual story
he said the guy called him inward
and the guy didn't call him inward
players get abused at every college basketball game
at Georgia's basketball game Saturday, the whole arena
was chanting abuses at a poor kid from Mississippi
but he looked inward, and not a finger was lifted in retribution
ever watch a Duke NC game? players are constantly abused
but they look inward, find their character and manhood
and leave the childish things
perhaps a bigger story is why the player lied about being told
to look inward

Riverman1
83540
Points
Riverman1 02/18/14 - 07:27 am
4
0
Both Apologized

I liked the fact the fan and player, both, apologized. Sports people are like that and good people.

mrenee2003
2946
Points
mrenee2003 02/18/14 - 09:41 am
5
1
Smart

As ACES stated, Mark was wrong. He apologized and has to pay consequences. However, I disagree that when you put yourself in the spotlight, you have to learn to deal with abusive behavior, criticism, yes, verbal and physical assaults, no. Fans need to be held accountable. In addition to harassing players (throwing popcorn on an injured player, clapping when they get hurt) the are abusing each other (lady throwing herself into a group of people at a Bama game, Dodgers fans beating a Giants fan, who now has a permanent brain injury, riots after games). Referees take a lot of abuse as well. It's getting out of hand, uncivilized. The fan has self-imposed sanctions, nothing was done to him by the school. There needs to be consequences. I stopped going to sporting events years ago. We were seated next to someone who used profanity every three seconds (children were around). Maybe there should be a two beer limit.

itsanotherday1
42881
Points
itsanotherday1 02/18/14 - 12:29 pm
4
1
Just look to Europe and South

Just look to Europe and South America to see where this downward spiral of morality goes. They have riots and killings at soccer games.

myfather15
55706
Points
myfather15 02/18/14 - 03:20 pm
3
0
Athletes, Fans, Coaches, and everyone else;

Takes "trash talking" to the extreme in sports and LIFE!!! Why do people feel the need to "jokingly" ridicule others?? I've never been one of those people, but I've had several friends who were "trash talkers".

Trash talking is usually to belittle a person or opponent, to take them off their game or to build up the trash talker!! It's pathetic down to it's very corps!!

Where should we turn to for advice on this?

Ephesians 4:29 "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

Ephesians 5:4 "Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk, or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanks-giving".

Titus 3:9 "But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless."

Colossians 2:16 "Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things."

justthefacts
21699
Points
justthefacts 02/18/14 - 05:12 pm
4
2
Perspective

"trash talking", like most everything, is fine in moderation. Done in the right circumstances it's often very entertaining.

corgimom
32178
Points
corgimom 02/18/14 - 06:46 pm
1
4
I wonder if he is going to go

I wonder if he is going to go through life assaulting everybody who says something to him that he doesn't like, or that calls him an ugly name.

He has a lot of growing up to do.

KSL
128828
Points
KSL 02/18/14 - 10:10 pm
3
1
So do parents and fans.

So do parents and fans.

itsanotherday1
42881
Points
itsanotherday1 02/18/14 - 11:03 pm
2
0
Dittos KSL

It is embarrassing to see the behavior of parents and coaches in rec ball and little league. It is a sorry statement on the condition of mores in the country today.

As far as fans go, I am always amazed at the people who couldn't wash the athlete's jock strap giving said athlete a hard time. WTH? You buy a ticket for entertainment and you expect the performers to do their best, whether it is athletics or ballet; but gee whiz.... Yea, boo them off the court if they are stinking up the place, but don't try to use the power of the ticket you bought just to harass someone. How immature and childish!

itsanotherday1
42881
Points
itsanotherday1 02/18/14 - 11:12 pm
4
0
I might add

I have no patience with grandstanding performers either. Your job is to block, tackle, score, bat, pitch, etc., etc. Doing your job doesn't require a celebration. I can just see the guys in Detroit high fiveing, hip/chest bumping, and dancing around every time a car comes off the line...

Hold it for extraordinary effort, not just what you are paid to do.

itsanotherday1
42881
Points
itsanotherday1 02/18/14 - 11:05 pm
0
0
*

*

corgimom
32178
Points
corgimom 02/19/14 - 12:38 am
0
2
Itsa, they all think that

Itsa, they all think that their child is going to be the next big-league athlete, and win scholarships and make millions of dollars. They live vicariously through their children.

They are the sports version of stage mothers.

As for the terrible behavior of the fans at adult sporting events- part of it is mob mentality, but it's also that a lot of people there have bet money on the game, and so they have a lot to lose, it's not just a game to them, it's not just entertainment.

Back to Top

Search Augusta jobs