Introduction Thank you for inviting me to speak in this seminer today. It is an honour and I appreciate the opportunity very much.
In a misguided attempt to protect his brand, James Hird insists on denying his responsibility as senior coach for the doping scandal besetting his club, so bringing the whole game into disrepute, writes Wayne Goldsmith.
Every club has a code of conduct flexible. They all have rules of behaviour bendable. And they all have mission statements, vision statements, team values, team trademarks and team policies all negotiable. But there is one rule - one overriding law that every person in every AFL team knows and understands and cannot deny - that is unbreakable.
No-one can do anything in an AFL football department that directly affects or involves the players without the full knowledge and approval of the senior coach. The senior coach in an AFL club has absolute power and total responsibility for all aspects of training and playing, and that includes the team's sports science and sports medicine program e.
Anyone who has any connection with AFL - or for that matter, professional football - knows that the rule applies to everyone, every situation, every aspect of preparation and performance - and all the time. The fact that it has taken months for ASADA, the AFL and more legal minds than you'd find chasing a fleet of ambulances to come up with these decisions, sanctions and penalties is laughable.
It is clear this Essendon exercise has nothing to do with "clean sport" or risk management or player welfare.
It is all about brand protection. It's been drawn out because the stakes for so many - the players, the senior coach, the club and the game - are so high.
Every sporting club and every professional athlete is justifiably protective of their "trademark" - their "brand" - the image that they "sell" to generate revenue. The trademark and the protection of the trademark is everything in the corporate world, and it is the same in sport. If you think about Sally Pearson, words like "professional, performance under pressure, superior athletic ability, composed" may come to mind.
Now think about Lance Armstrong. What words and images come to mind - "cancer survivor, athlete and champion" or "cheat, liar and deceiver"? Professional sport is all about money and selling "trademarks", and no one - not sponsors, not fans, not the television networks, not advertisers - will throw money at a club or an athlete whose "trademark" is associated with alcohol abuse, violence, racial discrimination, bullying, sexual vilification, illegal gambling or, in this case, drug use.
That's why James Hird, the Essendon Club and its officials have fought so hard for so long to diminish their responsibility for what happened. The Three Laws of Diminished Responsibility in Sport There are three laws in sport — the Three Laws of Diminished Responsibility - which are as consistent and reliable as anything Newton ever wrote about gravity, movement or motion: Under no circumstances accept full responsibility for anything you say or do If the weight of evidence against you is so strong that it is impossible to continue to deny full responsibility for your words and actions, refer to Law of Diminished Responsibility Number 1 Do not do anything to contradict the first two laws What kind of message does it send - to kids, to fans, to sponsors, to the public - that it is OK to deny any responsibility for your actions until you are faced with an avalanche of irrefutable and undeniable evidence?
After months of denial, maybe we will finally see some humility and admission of partial responsibility from those concerned, but only - only - when they had no other choice but to fall on their swords - or more accurately in this case, their hypodermics.
As for Hird himself, the question is - who advised him to take the course of denial he has taken? Imagine for a moment that back in February he came out and declared: I took some risks - I made some mistakes and for that I am very sorry. I take full responsibility for what's happened and I willingly accept any penalties or sanctions.
The club and the players could have moved on and enjoyed a successful season with little or no penalty. The game of AFL would have recovered quickly and the incident buried in a stack of good news stories and exciting on field contests.
In this version of the story, everyone wins. Instead, by persisting with the diminished responsibility defence, the reputation of the club, the coaches, management, staff, players and the game is tarnished - perhaps permanently.
Wayne Goldsmith is one of Australia's foremost thinkers on sport.With the initial televising of the XGames, and other similar broadcasts in the mid ’s, featuring Extreme Sports competition, the desire among young people to imitate the dangerous maneuvers and aerobatics of extreme .
involved in weight-lifting or regular gym use. Weight-lifters or bodybuilders were selected as the gym users and sports students included for comparison. However, participants were grouped () Use of AAS Demographics, risks scales for tobacco, alcohol, drugs, sex, suicide, athletic status.
• Hierarchical regression analyses were. New Delhi: The Government of India has recognised Boxing Federation of India (BFI) as the National Sports Federation (NSF) for Boxing. The step will give a boost to the sport of boxing which suffered due to absence of an NSF in the discipline since However, one finds that the post of a selector of the national cricket team of India is highly sought after despite the obvious difficulties and challenges involved.
Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) used to have a committee of five selectors, headed by a Chairman, to choose the national squad.
Extreme sports and extreme sports participants have been most commonly explored from a negative perspective, for example, the “need to take unnecessary risks.”.
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