Valdosta Daily Times

Breaking News:

What We Think

October 5, 2012

Football: Who’s cheating whom?

-- — As much as the community loves high school football — talking about it, assessing the players, attending by the tens of thousands the games each Friday night, the basic truth remains the same.

Football is a game.

But when allegations of cheating are tossed into the mix, football becomes more than a game. It becomes serious.

Such accusations question a team and its coaches’ ethics. They cast doubt on a team’s sense of fair play. Yes, football is about winning, especially in a town with two nicknames dedicated to victories, but even in Winnersville and TitleTown, football is also about building character and deepening bonds in South Georgia families that share a multi-generational experience with regional teams. Football is about the idea of excellence.

Accusations of cheating undermine those ideals and the very essence of tradition in TitleTown and Winnersville.

Not only that, such accusations can jeopardize careers, uproot families and threaten players’ abilities to move onward to college and college sports.

So, cheating allegations should not be made lightly. They should be backed by more than words or uncertain recordings.

These accusations should be made with hard evidence.

Last week, following the Lowndes High Vikings game against Colquitt County, the Packers coach accused the Vikings coaches of cheating. He alleged a former Thomas County Central middle school coach fed Vikings coaches the Packers’ offensive signals throughout the game. A YouTube recording reveals a man in the stands carrying binoculars and occasionally looking to the Lowndes coaches in the press box.

Lowndes High head coach Randy McPherson has said the accusations are untrue. Lowndes County Schools Superintendent Wes Taylor called the accusations “asinine.” The Georgia High School Association’s executive director said earlier this week that the Vikings’ 17-14 win over the Packers will not be overturned.

On Thursday, Lowndes High received official notice of an investigation into the charges.

Accusations of cheating should be taken seriously, but such accusations should not be made without solid proof of cheating.

If coaches or a team are cheating, they should face penalties. However, if coaches are found to make frivolous claims of cheating against another team, perhaps the accusers should be penalized instead.

Text Only
What We Think
  • Feed the hungry, adopt a duck

    If you haven’t already adopted a duck, you have a little more than a week to do so.

    April 17, 2014

  • If I were mayor

    Each year, the City of Valdosta holds an essay contest, “If I Were Mayor,” with students in the area writing their ideas about what they would do as the head of the city.

    April 16, 2014

  • The real lessons of a mock drill

    Valdosta High School’s Students Against Destructive Decisions held a powerful mock demonstration Monday morning on the school’s campus.

    April 14, 2014

  • Kudos to VPD

    Followed by a stellar report on Sunday about the drop in the crime rate in the City of Valdosta, city police officers prove their worth once again by arresting a dangerous fugitive in our community.

    April 13, 2014

  • It just plain stinks

    After every rain event, the pungent smell of sewage can be detected around the rivers and streams of south Georgia, and Florida residents brace for more to float their way.

    April 13, 2014

  • Pennsylvania school stabbings: Why?

    The following editorial appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Thursday, April 10:

    April 11, 2014

  • European bans on emails unlikely in America

    Several European countries are banning work emails to employees before and after normal working hours, between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m., in an effort to curb the perceived abuse of employees by corporations.

    April 11, 2014

  • Strength of character

    It was an unusual friendship — a tiny 8-year old girl with long blonde hair and the 6’10” Michigan State basketball player.

    April 10, 2014

  • Daly’s return a boost for Valdosta

    Flashy, colorful and always a hit with the fans for his long drives and humble demeanor, John Daly’s return to Kinderlou Forest and the South Georgia Classic is a boon for Valdosta.

    April 9, 2014

  • Too many pinwheels

    April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month, with numerous volunteers assisting the Child Advocacy Center in placing pinwheels on the lawn of the Valdosta City Hall. Each pinwheel represents one child that was a victim of abuse in 2013. Volunteers placed 887 pinwheels in remembrance.

    April 8, 2014

Top News

What you think about school and workplace rules about Facebook friends?

There have to be rules.
No need for rules, just use common sense.
If people want to be friends, what is the big deal?
Nobody uses Facebook anymore.
     View Results