We salute legendary sports broadcaster Bob Costas this week after his spot-on analysis of the degradation of professional sports and society at large during his halftime rant on Sunday Night Football. The 19-time Emmy Award winner took on the growing epidemic plaguing our country: society’s downward spiral and lack of morality. In no other venue is this more evident than professional sports (and I use the term “professional” loosely).
Gone are the days of acting like you’ve been there before. It has been replaced with self-indulgence and individualism. Sadly, as I peruse through the Internet looking for “resources” to write this article, I find more bloggers and sports fans in support of such asinine displays of immaturity as Stevie Johnson’s costly 15-yard touchdown celebration. This is indicative of the world we unfortunately live in. Showboats and cocky idiots like Johnson, Terrell Owens and DeSean Jackson get far more media exposure than the real men who show up every game and just do their job. A simple display of excitement such as spiking the ball or jumping into the stands is a far cry from a staged TD celebration the player knows full well will cost the team crucial yardage in a penalty. Nowadays, this idiocy is not limited to touchdown celebrations. Players repeatedly make asses out of themselves by celebrating after a tackle or catch (many times while their team is losing). No greater example of this was the infamous DeSean Jackson penalty that wiped out a 50-yard catch.
If the NFL wants to avoid the NBA’s fate of borderline bankruptcy, they should keep the street mentality out of football. As much as these guys avoid the “role model” label, people do look up to them, especially kids. When a boy sees his idol acting like a thug or attention-hungry moron, he is likely to emulate such behavior. The NFL and NBA should take notes from hockey, rugby and baseball to see how real men act in PROFESSIONAL sports.