College athletics places a lot of importance on succeeding and pushing yourself to the limit. Even though winning is fundamental when it comes to college sports, sportsmanship and respect also hold a high level of importance.
But apparently not to some Pacific University students. A group of Pacific football players showed poor sportsmanship at the April 16 away softball game between the Boxers and the Wildcats by posting red pieces of paper with TLR sophomore columnist Chris Forrer’s name on them all over the visting dugout to try to get under the Wildcats’ skin.
Forrer’s commentery had evoked negative feelings by some Linfield softball players and others in and outside of the Linfield community. However, the Wildcats used the Review’s website to express their opinions. This was an appropriate outlet for their comments and feedback. But the actions by the Pacific students did nothing to advance the discussion started by Forrer’s column, and they served only to harass him and our Wildcats.
When you are a college athlete, you are representing the college — whether you are on or off the court or field. This means that any negative choices you make will not only reflect poorly on your team but also on the college. Once a negative choice like this is made by an individual or group, it can be difficult to re-establish reputations and perceptions.
Overall, we think that the Wildcat softball team expressed themselves in a constructive way by posting feedback and comments through an appropriate outlet — responding to Forrer’s column online. Their comments fueled much discussion there. But nothing constructive came out of the Pacific students’ actions, and the Wildcats won anyway, displaying their ability to remain above such petty tactics.
We know that Linfield College athletes hold a high standard of class and sportsmanship, and we hope that they will continue to in the years to come.
-The Review Editorial Board