How To Be A Good Crescent Sports Fan

by Fraser Bertram, Director of Athletics, and Ari Hunter, Middle School Faculty
A different take on an old saying that “sports build character” is that “sports don’t build character, they reveal it.” Unfortunately, in youth and school sport, the latter phrase is too often applicable to the spectators.
I have often wondered what it would be like if everyone at a kids’ game had to sit next to the parents or friends of the other team and the referee. Would the same comments be made knowing that you are all there to cheer on your friends or sons?

A sign at a community baseball diamond recently made the rounds on social media. The sign read:
  1. These are kids
  2.  This is a game
  3. Coaches are volunteers
  4.  Umpires are human
It is a sad commentary that such a sign needs to be posted for kids’ sports, but it speaks to the reality of the rise in pressure around youth games.

We have been fortunate at Crescent to have positive peer and parent spectators who recognise that players, coaches and referees are doing their best to fulfill their roles in competitive matches.

As winter playoffs and our annual Friday Night Basketball game approach, it’s timely to share some reminders about how to be a good Crescent fan at the games that our kids play for fun.

Mr. Ari Hunter, our Senior D1 Basketball coach, says the home team feeds off the positive energy of the crowd. When our fans are chanting “De-fense!” in unison with the bench, or cheering loudly when we make a great play, that energy lifts our players and helps wear down the opponents. In late game situations, the support of the crowd fuels our players to dig deep in the face of fatigue. When done properly, a strong home court crowd is a powerful advantage.

However, cheering at a game with 200 people is much different from cheering in a stadium with 20,000 people. It is important to understand that what might be anonymously shouted in a huge stadium is heard clearly in a small gym or arena. It is great to cheer for our team, and it is okay to make a consistent noise during an opponent’s foul shot – but it’s not okay to boo the opposition, single out players with comments or shout out during foul shots.

On a basketball court, the referee is watching 10 players battle for a ball and watching for many more rules to be followed. Contrary to popular belief, the refs are watching the same game as you. Yes, they may make mistakes and sometimes they may not help our team. They are human. This happens and it is to the coach to decide how to manage these situations.

Again, we mainly see positive interaction from Crescent spectators at our matches. It is great to have crowds out to support our boys. Please come and enjoy watching the games. The boys will play. The coaches will coach (and maybe banter with referees). The referees will do their best job refereeing. As spectators, you can sit back, cheer on our Coyotes and not worry about the other three roles in the show.