Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
Don’t pour it on.
Last fall, I wrote about an unnecessary bludgeoning of Milwaukee Washington by Milwaukee Bradley Tech that I witnessed. Word got around MPS athletics and let’s just say it didn’t happen again……..last season. Last weekend, I saw another blatant case of the worst sportsmanship in high school athletics: running up the score.
This time, I won’t mention the teams, but I will detail the circumstances. Leading 42-19 with under two minutes to go in the game, the team about to coast to a victory had the football at about their opponent’s 25-yard line. I swear there isn’t a coach in southeast Wisconsin who has heard of, “taking a knee.” Have the quarterback take the snap, drop back a step or two and go down to one knee. Do this two or three times, run out the clock, game over, everybody goes home, no fights break out and no one gets seriously injured for nothing.
Are you kidding me? We can’t do that. We’ve got a chance for more, more, more! Did I forget to mention the team in the lead still has starters out on the field?
The ball is snapped, and the quarterback...........DROPS BACK TO PASS! It’s a perfect spiral into the right corner of the end zone. Pass caught. Touchdown. 48-19.
The brilliant coaches decide to go for two points because during the time it took to drive down the field, they used their public school math skills to determine that would give them an even 50 points if the conversion was successful, and it was.
Oh, there’s more.
On the ensuing kickoff, instead of sending the ball deep, the team leading 50-19 does something I’ve never seen in that situation, ever, at any level of sports. They attempted an onside kick in the hope of getting the ball back one more time. Thankfully, the attempt failed, but what if it hadn’t? Would they have thrown another bomb into the end zone? Would they have been unable to settle for 50? Were 56, 57, even 58 points in their sights?
There’s a word for this kind of coaching and playing: It’s garbage. I’m not suggesting teams not give their best effort, but for those who say we should just let the kids play, I counter that at that point, the time for playing has long expired. It’s time to wind down the clock and go home. Nothing is gained from frustrations boiling over, fights erupting, or heaven forbid, a freak, serious injury that was completely avoidable.
Varsity high school football coaches, show some class. When the game is clearly in hand, clear your bench, and don’t rub it in.