The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Sports

May 8, 2013

Rick Teverbaugh: Specialty players longshot gamble

I have no doubt that nearly all parents have their kids’ best interests at heart at all times.

But when they allow or even encourage a son or daughter to specialize in one sport or merely follow the suggestion of a coach to do that same thing, are they really accomplishing the aforementioned goal?

In a time when many athletes focus on one sport and play it nearly year-round has reached near epidemic status, it was once again refreshing to see a room of three-sport athletes for Wednesday’s Johnny Wilson Awards.

What I saw from the assembled 15 athletes representing nine of the 11 high schools in our area, were accomplished performers in their chosen sports. These weren’t players who reside at the end of the bench and rarely get into a contest until after the outcome is already decided.

The argument for specialization is that it is the only way to develop skills good enough to earn a college scholarship and perhaps beyond that a professional career. That argument grows weaker by the year.

Many of the 15 nominees for the Johnny Wilson Awards are going to play in college and are going to get some money toward getting that education because of their athletic skills. So getting that scholarship is possible without focusing on a single sport. College is soon enough to narrow the choice to a single sport.

The second part involves playing as a professional. What percentage of the area athletes who focus on one sport actually end up playing that sport as a means of making a living? The percentage might be close to the same as buying a winning lottery ticket.

At Wednesday’s luncheon at Anderson Country Club, Wilson warned that those pointing toward being the next Michael Jordan might be facing a huge uphill climb. He pointed a finger at basketball coaches for trying to get players to give up all but that one sport. I agree it feels that way much of the time.

But one stat from the 2013 nominees seems to point out that not all coaches are trying to do that or at least not all of them are successful.

Of the 15 nominees with three or more sports on their résumé, all of them played basketball as one of their sports. I can’t recall that happening in any of the past five years of this award.

The two overall winners, Anderson’s Darien Thompson and Pendleton Heights’ Kurt Talbert, experienced success in basketball. Thompson was on a sectional championship team in 2012 and Talbert was on a sectional championship team in both 2012 and 2013.

Both are well-rounded athletes and both are well-rounded people.

The Johnny Wilson Awards are a yearly reminder that quality can come to the surface in many different sports within the same athlete. Now I just wish that more parents would encourage that.

Sports Editor Rick Teverbaugh’s columns appear twice weekly.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • SPT - HB0730 - Colts recap art 1 Looking back at Week 1 of Colts Camp

    The first week of Indianapolis Colts training camp has ended at Anderson University, and the players received their first day off Tuesday. Practice resumes today with the daily morning walkthrough followed by a public session scheduled to begin at 1:50 p.m. With the team's preseason debut at the New York Jets just eight days away, here's a look at three things that have stood out since the Colts hit campus on July 23.

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • SPL - PT072314 - PT Ken de la Bastide column - column sig Ken de la Bastide: Good racing across the board

    This past weekend I got to witness four pretty good races at three different venues in central Indiana, none of them disappointed.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0729 - Andrew Luck - JC 4.JPG Colts Quick Hits: Tuesday, July 29

    Notes,news and fun facts from Colts Training Camp at Anderson University on Monday.

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0729 - Colt Anderson - JC 2 Anderson hopes to make name with Colts

    Defensive coordinator Greg Manusky was the first person Colt Anderson saw upon reporting to Anderson University last Wednesday. And he couldn't resist making the obvious connection. "Colt Anderson's a Colt ... in Anderson," Manusky said as a way of greeting the new Indianapolis Colts safety to training camp.

    July 29, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0729 - Chris Rainey - DK Colts release RB Rainey

    Just two days after earning praise for his playmaking ability from head coach Chuck Pagano, running back Chris Rainey was waived by the Indianapolis Colts on Monday morning. The news was broken in a press release around 8:30 a.m. and later confirmed by Pagano during an afternoon session with the media.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0729 - Andrew Luck - JC 1 Luck still learning

    Wind chill estimates put the temperature at 59 degrees Monday morning at Anderson University. During one stretch of his fifth training camp practice of the year, however, it likely felt much colder to Andrew Luck.

    July 28, 2014 3 Photos

  • Lions star plays in national tourneys Liberty Christian senior Chris Nunn, a three-year starting guard for the Lions and Indiana Class Basketball Junior All-Star, took his talents on the road this summer,competing in back-to-back tournaments with his AAU travel team, Team Progeny.

    July 28, 2014

  • SPT - HB0729 - Colts practice - JC 046a.jpg Colts Camp Update: ESPN's in town

    The first week of practice at Anderson University wrapped up Monday morning with the Indianapolis Colts working out from 9 a.m. to noon.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • SPT - HB0728 - Colts Camp - Castonzo 2 - 278 Castonzo comfortable with Colts' changing O-line

    For all the changes along the offensive line the past three seasons, Anthony Castonzo has been the lone constant. He joined a veteran group anchored by center Jeff Saturday in 2011, was part of a remodeled unit in 2012 and became a mainstay at left tackle for all 16 games last year.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • SPT - HB0728 - Colts Camp - Allen 1 - 290 Colts' offense adapting to new arsenal

    Third-year tight end Dwayne Allen suffered a season-opening hip injury in Week 1 against the Oakland Raiders, then watched as left guard Donald Thomas, running backs Vick Ballard and Ahmad Bradshaw and wide receiver Reggie Wayne also exited the lineup over the next six weeks. It left offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton scrambling to come up with new ways to attack defenses with an ever-changing cast of characters.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

Latest Sports Photos


Click here to browse and buy photos from The Herald Bulletin

Latest Racing News