As a student athlete what you do in public affects your school, your coach, and your team. When you decided to play on a team for your school or organization, you agreed to become a representative for that school or organization. Which means you accepted the obligations to protect and support their image. This includes through your actions. Your actions have to be in line with what is acceptable by your school because you are now a part of it. When people see you they see your school.
So what if I posted that picture on Facebook? It’s my page.
I’m 21 years old. I can get drunk if I want to.
If you were an athlete that did the things above would your coach and school agree with what you posted? Would your coach and school agree with you getting drunk? These are some of the questions that people watching you and/or your team will ask. Their view of you, your team, your coach, and your school will be based on their answers to those questions.
Your actions show other people the kind of person you are. What you stand for. What you believe in. What kind of person you are trying to become and what direction you are headed towards in your life.
The same applies to your coach and thus the school. Part of the image that your coach and school portrays reveals what type of behavior is tolerated or accepted from their athletes by the program. People, or fans, who agree with what is accepted will probably support the programs of the school. Those that do not most likely will withdraw support.
For example, if an athlete is caught drunk in public, those supporting the program will believe that the coach and school tolerate that kind of behavior. Those that do not agree with that type of behavior could possibly withdraw their support.
Take another way of looking at this.
When you did something that you didn’t want your mother or father to find out about, why did you try to hide it from them? Would your parents approve of what you did? Would other people think that your parents approved of what you did? How would people view them? This same concept could be applied to your coach and school. The only difference between the two is the type of punishments or consequences that would result from your actions.
I encourage you to try to understand what type of image your coach is trying to portray about your team and school. Make sure what you say, what you do, and how you look fit in with that image.
What other types of actions do you think would make your coach and school look bad?
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