SPORTS ANGLES: HOW HARMFUL WERE THE U OF M RIOTS?

 Good Sportsmanship More Important Than Celebration

September Symens

It’s fine to celebrate wins and despair over losses. When people are arrested for rioting over the outcome of a game, though, it’s probably fair to say that the fans have gone too far.

Recent riots following hockey games at the University of Minnesota and a basketball game at Iowa State makes one wonder: what has happened to the practice of good sportsmanship?

Since the inception of competetive sports, winning and losing with class has been a fundamental concept for competitors and spectators alike.

The alcohol-fueled (don’t even try to deny it) chaos following these recent sporting events has proved that fans are abandoning this unwritten, but integral rule.  Though a school’s athletes may act with the utmost professionalism, oftentimes, the drunken hordes of fans hurling insults at the other team ruin their own school’s image. Those who refuse to conduct themselves appropriately are slowly diminishing the fun that has always accompanied collegiate games.

When local police forces have no choice but to use tear gas, pepper spray and zip ties on fans who are posing threats to the surrounding community, the tolerance level for unruly fans has risen too high. Historically, it has not been acceptable for so-called “fans” to tarnish their team’s image by causing post-game disorder—why start letting it slide now?

True fans of collegiate sports should not let a few drunken idiots ruin the fun and friendly competition that accompanies school sporting events. The trend of rioting after games is embarrassing for those who actually care about the team, not to mention dangerous for the campus community. Good sportsmanship and class will never go out of style, though, so please, cheer responsibly.

September is a junior English and journalism major from Omaha, Neb.

 

Overreactions demonstrate ignorance of actual riots

 

Hannah Redder

Let’s do a little compare and contrast for a second.

In midwestern America, sometimes college hockey teams named after our favorite disease-carrying rodents lose the big game.

On the other side of the world, Syrians live in horrific conditions under tyrannic government rule. Rodents are possibly the only things that are not diseased.

Back in Minnesota, 20-something college students in Minneapolis react to the Gopher’s loss by  drinking too many Four Locos and flipping a few cars.

Syrian rebels think flipping cars is child’s play, and skip straight to throwing grenades or shooting flame throwers.

A few of those University of Minnesota students got arrested, and people, particularly those closest to home, are boarding up their houses in anticipation of the Y2K of our generation: drunken sports riots.

I’ll give you this. For the United States and particuarly the midwest, a rowdy outbreak of this kind doesn’t happen very often. Apart from the occassional Black Friday stabbing in a Target parking lot, we generally reserve our rioting for important issues, like civil rights.

That being said, this isolated incident should not have stirred up the hysteria that it did.

People have begun prematurely mourning the loss of sportsmanship and every other core value of athletics, which will inevitably lead to the downfall of our nation as a whole. They seem to be forgetting that someone somewhere has it worse. Imagine that.

These particular riots did, after all, happen on a college campus. Pre-Four Locos, all of the participatants might have been loud and rude at worst, but never violent.

They live in a place called Dinkytown, for Pete’s sake.

 

Hannah is a junior English and journalism major from Mitchell, S.D.