View Full Version : Another basketball rout story catching the eye of the national media

11-28-2011, 05:16 PM
A stacked team of AAU-level talent (for those of you unfamiliar with the term, AAU is an organization for elite youth basketball players to travel and play nationally outside of their school/regular team) dominated a small, elementary-middle school team 100-2.

Link (http://rivals.yahoo.com/highschool/blog/prep_rally/post/100-2-middle-school-hoops-blowout-may-have-reper?urn=highschool-wp9112)

So, there are a few questions that need to be addressed here.

1. Is this something we should care about?
2. What, if any, consequences should be applied to the coach/team/school for the drubbing?

Personally, my feelings are mixed about this. I played basketball throughout high school and coached club-level kids in 6th grade during my senior year of high school. Based on my experiences as a player and a coach, I believe that both coaches were in a really impossible situation. The game in question was part of a tournament that the bigger, more talented school opted to enter. From what I understand, it was supposed to be a pre-season warm up game to get the kids used to playing again.

The winning coach did take steps to reduce the margin of victory. He took out his starters within two minutes of the game, stopped putting on full-court pressure after they were up 25-0, and rode the backups the rest of the game. Then again, the question is whether those steps were enough. The backups on that team were still leaps and bounds better than the starters on the losing school's team. The skill and athleticism gap between the two teams is immense. The coach could have theoretically instituted a rule on the team to pass the ball 5 times before shooting, for example. Or perhaps shoot with opposite hands.

I don't blame the winning coach. I don't think they entered the tournament to blow everyone away; that said, I have to imagine that this will cause some sort of divisional or hierarchical structure to prevent similar situations from happening in the future. Such a dominant team should not be allowed on the same court as the losing team in an organized, "on the books" game.

I've heard a lot of people raging about how the losing team should take it on the chin and that nothing wrong happened. I don't agree with that. I don't blame the coach or players on the winning team, but at the same time I think it's obvious that winning 100-2 (essentially 100-0 due to a last second layup) violates fair play. These are middle school kids we're talking about (8th grade at the oldest), meaning that while they should be allowed to compete, there still needs to be standards in place for fair play.

TL;DR - My analysis of this situation is that no obvious rules or ethical standards were broken. On the other hand, this situation is probably going to be a catalyst for better organization in the basketball structure in that community so that future blowouts like this don't happen again.

11-28-2011, 06:07 PM
The team that only scored 2 points obviously needs to box out a bit more and play some D. Their coach shouldn't be punished but he should have his club put in some extra practice to prevent such an embarrassment in the future.

As for the winning team...good for them.

~completely serious~

11-28-2011, 06:24 PM
So you have an 11 year old son playing basketball against cream-of-the-crop 12 and 13 year olds. They win by 98 points.

No part of you has even a slight problem with that?

Again, to reiterate my point: I don't hold the athletes themselves or the coaches responsible. I think it's a systematic issue. No one did anything wrong, per se.

11-28-2011, 06:25 PM
A question going the other way:
If the winning team was that much better, how did they ever allow those two points??? :confused:

I can't really say much on the competitions over there, since I don't know anything about it. All I know is that over hear, any college-related teams will just play in the regular leagues, just like any other club.

11-28-2011, 06:28 PM
I have no problem with this. Winning team did all they could to not rub it in, the losing team was just that bad.

I have been on both sides of this equation in both high school and college (different sport) and honestly, as long as there was no blatant unsportsmanlike rubbing in of the dominance, the athletes don't care. Why? Because they know.

My sophomore year in college we (East Coast college) ended up playing Cal and UCLA in water polo. California schools dominate (or dominated - may have changed but I doubt it) water polo beyond the original dream team's dominance. We ended up being the best East Coast team that year and lost 20-1 to Cal in that tournament (which is an epic blowout in a sport that generally has single digit scores). We knew we were going to get blown out and we did. No big deal.

11-28-2011, 06:34 PM
So you have an 11 year old son playing basketball against cream-of-the-crop 12 and 13 year olds. They win by 98 points.

No part of you has even a slight problem with that?

Again, to reiterate my point: I don't hold the athletes themselves or the coaches responsible. I think it's a systematic issue. No one did anything wrong, per se.

I played a lot of competitive sports growing up and I've been on both sides of routs in baseball, football and ice hockey. Having a team deliberately not score on us was more insulting than just getting our asses kicked. I distinctly remember a hockey match where we lost something like 35-3 because we just plain sucked. Made winning that much sweeter when we did.

11-28-2011, 06:41 PM
For the record, I agree with you. That's why I have said a few times that I'm not upset with the coach or the players on either side.

All I'm saying is that this is like a D3 college team going up against an NBA all star team in terms of skill differential. Sure, they all know the rules and are technically playing the same game. My beef is with the system for allowing these two teams to meet in the tournament.

They meet again in a few weeks, actually. It'll be interesting to see what happens then.

11-28-2011, 06:48 PM
It was a pre-season scrimmage, was it not? At least the losing team knows what they need to work on now...basically EVERYTHING.

11-28-2011, 06:55 PM
Preseason tournament, similar to the Maui invitational in the NCAA or any number of tournaments I played in growing up. We always had one Thanksgiving weekend.

The all-star team won the championship by a landslide too, although it looked more respectable (75-32).

I wouldn't have objections to this if A) the kids weren't so severely and obviously outmatched even from the start, and B) middle school students.

Once athletes get into high school, I'm more ok with stuff like this. If these eighth grade students are this good, have them play with older kids or in another league. I'd be bored if I was stomping everyone by 40 points a game every time out.

11-28-2011, 08:18 PM
I have to be on the same page with Ivhon and Davian. I've been on both ends of this and it just happens sometimes. I remember on a select soccer team in high school, we went to Jackson, TN for a tournament and beat the local team 17 to nil. I also remember in college getting beat by a team out of California 12 to nothing. It happens and that's sports. Even very good teams get beat sometimes.

As far as the other thing goes, I don't have a problem with that either. We used to sign up for local programs to get some practice before starting our season and also to get used to playing together again. Sometimes we got into a league or a game where the team was well below us in talent. As long as the gamesmanship was good and there wasn't any in your face kind of stuff going on, everyone was fine with it. I actually liked playing up against teams that were better than we were because it gave us some pointers on what we needed to improve on and how we could be better.

The hardest, roughest game I ever played in was against a team from South Korea. The were awesome and we were outmatched, but we were bigger and not scared to get physical. In the end, we got beat by a couple of goals, but we learned a lot.

11-28-2011, 08:34 PM
From what I've read, the winning coach pulled his starters very early, told his team not to play full court press or even half court press and finally told his team not to even play defense. Nothing else can be done at that point.