What happened with the Greenbrier High School soccer team brings to mind questions when considering how students and high school student-athletes in particular are covered by the media.
We are invited to cover positive events, of which there are many – everything from spelling bees to STAR students to those signing letters of intent to play athletics at the collegiate level.
But what happens when stories are negative? Are we supposed to turn a blind eye to them?
Rarely in print will you find the name of a person who commits an error on the baseball field or the name of the football player who commits a penalty at a critical juncture that costs his team dearly. Why? Because it is perceived as picking on a teenager, accusing him or her of a character flaw.
When do teenagers become responsible for their actions?
Comments following the Greenbrier soccer story were interesting. Some thought the students should be held accountable for underage drinking and smoking “spice,” while others blame the coaches and parents (chaperones) for not preventing it.
Supposedly the alcohol of choice was vodka, which can pass for water in a water bottle. Should coaches and chaperones be required to sample each athlete’s water bottle
What should the punishment be?
We’ve also covered stories where people have been arrested for selling spice. Are they they ones to blame for taking students’ hard-earned money in return for the illicit goods? Shouldn’t the buyers be implicated as well?
Obviously there are many questions yet to be answered, but those who know the details aren’t talking. Well, at least not anymore.
Accolades continue to roll in from the recent basketball season.
From Harlem, Reggie Reid was named to the Region 3-AA All-Region first team and Class AA All-State first team, while Dylan Farmer and Torien Beard received all-region honorable mention.