FHSAA Puts Emphasis On Sportsmanship & Adult Participants

By Tamas Mondovics

­The Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) was pleased to announce that the recent emphasis on sportsmanship in high school sports appear to be paying off.

In a recent press release, officials said that suspensions arising from football games are down more than 25 percent from last year.

As it was reported by the release, during the first five weeks of this football season, apparent rule violations have led to 101 suspensions, however, during the same time period of the 2011 season, 136 suspensions were issued – a 25.7 percent decline.

This news comes as the association joins in celebrations of National High School Activities Month, beginning with this week’s observance of Sportsmanship and Fan Appreciation Week.

“Athletics are a key part of many schools’ wealth of activities for their students, and the FHSAA proudly recognizes the value of sports as part of an assortment hat includes performing arts, debate and other vital activities,” said FHSAA executive director, Roger Dearing.

The first week of October was designated Sportsmanship and Fan Appreciation Week, while the week of October 15-20 is National Coaches/Sponsors/Advisors/Officials Week.

Dearing said that he is hopeful that student-athletes, coaches, parents and others who share a passion for high school football are respecting the ideals of good sportsmanship.

FHSAA representatives discuss sportsmanship when they regularly meet with member schools, and it is a topic in compliance seminars attended by all member schools every two years.

The association also boasts of promoting sportsmanship in weekly email alerts and on a dedicated page on its Website (www.fhsaa.org/departments/sportsmanship), including a Student-Athlete Advisory Committee event to discuss production of a sportsmanship commercial that would air on the Bright House Sports Network later in the year.

As part of the special month activities that have been observed since 1980 (originally as just a week-long celebration) coaches, sponsors, advisors and officials will also be recognized.

“Without the countless adults who devote their time and energy to help young athletes, high school sports simply would not be possible,” Dearing said.

Each year the FHSAA crown108 teams and more than 720 student-athletes state champions in 30 sports, while through the programs more than 800,000 students annually are extended opportunities to receive lessons in leadership, sportsmanship and citizenship.

For more information about FHSAA, please visit www.fhsaa.org.