Trey Hallman ‘takes a stand’ on athletics and academics

Trey Hallman, Special to the Dodger

Dear Editor of the Dodger:

Everyone always remembers the big game, the big play, and most of all the player who made it all happen.  Some say that athletics are becoming too important to our society and I am definitely one to oppose.  I certainly disagree with the Dodger article, “Are athletics taking precedence over everything else?”  I personally value students being involved in athletics over academics and the arts because each athlete encounters tougher situations and have to react, instead of being told what to do, like in a classroom setting.  Yes, sports are being taken more seriously because people want to win.  I do not know a human being who doesn’t; it is very natural, and if you’re not striving to be your best, then you’re wasting your precious time. The ability to react to someone’s surroundings is far more important than knowing the history of Europe, being able to use the Pythagorean theorem or being able to calculate the exact velocity of an object.

Athletics are a unique form of art.  They are appreciated so much because it takes time and hard work to excel at every sport.  Unlike academics, a person gets a direct feedback, because in sports, what you get out of it is a exactly what you put in.  In other words, if you don’t give complete effort, you won’t receive any benefit.  In class, it is very easy to just go through the motions and still pass, and over the summer, students lose a great percentage of what they had just previously learned.  The measure of academics is not flaw-free because people can guess and get the answer correct.  In sports, if you guess, it can have a terrible outcome.

Being involved in an activity outside of school is by far one of the best things a person can do.  The activity motivates them to do their best in the classroom, because for every sport, you have to have certain grades to play.  The standard curriculum of sports is by far more difficult to learn than any class a person can take.  The ability to remember plays and knowing exactly what to do, at a fast pace, is terribly more difficult than learning formulas or remembering presidents.  Then there’s the argument that the arts should be more important than sports, and I shake my head.  Isn’t acting out a play or painting a picture another way of expressing yourself?  As athletes, we do the same expression of ourselves, but in sports.

Athletics are becoming more important to society because they are enjoyable.   Almost any person could go and get a perfect score on a test, if they really wanted to, but it is very dreadful work.  In life, I do not believe that just because you graduate from high school, and graduate from college, that you will automatically be successful.  There are few jobs that use even half of the curriculum that is being taught in the standard high school.

On the other hand, academics are important when it comes to going to college.  If a person does go to college, they are projected to make more than the average high school graduate or high school dropout.  Some students who do not have the most amazing grades need sports to go to college.  Yes, some of the high caliber athletes get to slide by, but that’s a very small percentage.

Sports are becoming more serious in today’s society. Why can’t they?  If someone has the passion to succeed in an activity, how do we frown upon that?

Without sports as an primary activity, more people would be involved in things that they shouldn’t be a part of, such as gangs, drugs and violence.  In other words, would you rather your child be the best he can be in sports? Or would you rather your child be a deadbeat druggie that just goes through the motions?

Every sport has the ability to change the life of someone of any age.  From playing Pee-Wee football as a child to competing in an extreme Frisbee league, a win could change the whole personal outlook to their day.  It changes the lives of those who are less fortunate and gives them hope.  When the World Cup was hosted in South Africa, it gave the poorer community hope, just by playing soccer. Even on their worst days, a person’s day could change if their team wins.  It gives people another thing to be passionate about, and something to believe in.  Sports are a very beautiful thing.

Sincerely,

Trey Hallman