Should blowouts be allowed in youth sports?


Jahlea Douglas

Senior Damien Funnell is a staff writer and sports score manager for Elkhart Memorial GENESIS who specializes in sports writing.

Damien Funnell, Staff Writer/Sports Score Manager

Anyway you look at it, stopping blowouts in all sports are almost inevitable. There will always be that match of an unbeatable machine pinned against another who can’t seem to buy a win. In which case, I believe that a losing team can learn a lesson from. While losing in such a fashion comes across as boring to those watching, and even those playing, it can teach more than what is presented on the surface. 

Being a player in a losing situation is never easy. Believe me when I tell you: I know the feeling all too well.

Through the significant losses, players have to make a choice at that moment. Are they going to let that moment define who they are? The way I view it, the athlete has two choices: they can back down and fold to the superior team, losing all confidence and a sense of competitiveness, or they  can go down fighting, giving it all they’ve got until the clock hits zero. 

I’ve never been one to quit, especially when it comes to a competition. It builds a sense of character to know that even though I lost, I gave it absolutely everything I had and at least I can be at peace with that

However, with the recent implementation of the mercy rule, players aren’t even allowed to make such a character building choice. For example, in football, in Indiana if a team were to go up by 35 points, the clock is to keep running and not stop unless for a timeout, injury, penalty, or touchdown. 

While I understand that this is to teach sportsmanship, this won’t stop a coach from keeping his best players in and still running up the score. So, what is this really preventing? It won’t stop a coach who is already in over his head from piling up points. So why not conserve the time to see what the other team can bring out in themselves? 

I see the mercy rule as an indictment towards the attitude it’s setting for the athletes. Once you think about it, the athletes are more than capable of understanding the circumstances they’re under. Do you really think they even have the choice of continuing to fight if they see that their time has been diminished even more? I didn’t think so. 

The views in this column do not necessarily reflect the views of the GENESIS staff. Reach Damien Funnell at [email protected].