Supporting an Playing

Throughout the last few months in the united states there has been some very serious and saddening events that have taken place. From Ferguson, to Eric Garner there have been many actions resulting in the death of human lives. Regardless of your stance on the situations that have happened there is one over ruling factor that cannot be forgotten and that is that people have lost their lives for no reason. Having these very horrible events happen recently many professional athletes have been using their visibility and “star power” to bring to light that people are should take notice and care about what is going on in the current events of the united states.

Following these events Players from the Saint Louis Rams team have brought attention to these events by putting up their hands making the “Don’t shoot symbol.

Dont shoot(Rams players doing the don’t shoot before their game last week)

This brought a rather large amount notoriety to the Mike Brown and Ferguson case. Say what you may about this action; However, it brought a large amount notoriety to this case. Having said that, this case already had a huge following but when these professional football players did this it “stirred the pot” and in many people’s opinions has brought this case to a higher level of visibility then anticipated.

Another showing of protest with professional athletes is players wearing shirts that simply say “I can’t breathe” these three simple words are very simple but have an unbelivable deep meaning. This shirt is in reference to Eric Garner, who was chocked to death by cops. His last words were “I can’t breathe.” Many people believe that his death was also wrong and unjust and that is why these professional athletes are standing behind Eric and his case. Athletes like Lebron James, Kyrie Irving, Reggie Bush have all warn shirts that say these words in warm ups before their games.having said this these athletes by wearing these shirts have brought so much national attention to these cases.n-LEBRON-JAMES-large(Lebron James)

This in my eyes is a great thing. The more people that aware and are educated on a situation will make the outcome a better and more just outcome. I support these athletes standing up for what they believe in, because it not only is the freedom of speech but it also will help make better a situation that is not good at all

Both Basketballs

In my year and half here at the University of Michigan I have been lucky enough to taste the excitement and tradition of many of our sports. This year I attendened the University of Michigan’s mens Basketball game that opened their season. I was also in attendance for the Women’s opening basketball game.They were both very fun and up beat games that were great games to take in as a spectator and as a former basketball player who appreciates the game. As I sat And took in the games at Crisler Arena I began to notice a big difference between the two games.

The mens basketball game had a substantially more large crowd at their game in comparison to the women’s game. This led to ask the simple question, why? As I saw the games I could not see any difference in the way the game was played or what was going on on the court itself. As i watched the women’s game the only thing that was different was that they were not “Dunking” the ball. The “Dunk” Came of age with Bob Kurland a seven foot olympic gold medalist who was dunking in the mid 1940’s. Since then the dunk has been a mainstay of basketball and an attraction for many fans. Now there are so many tremendous athletes playing basketball that dunks are no longer mundane and simple. They have evolved into high flying and complicated motions that dazzle the crowds and in my opinion bring many fans to games.

Bob Kurland(Bob Kurland)

On the other side of this today in women basketball there are a couple females who can dunk. One of which is a woman named Brittney Griner, this 6’8 super star dominated in Womens college basketball and also now in the WNBA (Womens national basketball association.) As word spread about this female dunker ticket sales for Baylor university women’s basketball games sky rocketed.  This is because people enjoy seeing that type of talent.

Griner-Brittney-Dunk(Brittney Griner Dunking)

In class we talked about women and men in sports and at the University of Michigan there are amazing athletes in women and mens sports. The difference between men and women’s basketball is nothing but one simple move, the Dunk. I believe that if women’s basketball team had a girl who could dunk on their team then there would be a substantial change in attendance. These two sports are the same no matter who is playing them yet a simple move can change the whole dynamic of this game.

What We Think

Growing up in a traditional house hold i was under the impression that the men do the work physically and the women in the house stay at home. This traditional mindset that I grew up with is all I ever knew. This traditional mindset was broken when my friend Clay came home from the Military. Clay was deployed in Iraq which presently and in the past few years has a very dangerous place. When he returned home naturally i asked about things that happened over there and he told me about a girl named Maria.

Maria was a nurse that may have been the toughest and most stead fast person in the face advercity according to my friend clay. One day a man came in who had been shot and it did not look good for him. Everyone froze but Maria took control of the situation. She lifted this 220 pound man by herself on to the operating table and got him ready for surgery. This was an amazing thing to hear, because growing up in a traditional household thinking that women were not as “bold” as the men, i realized i was completely wrong and that the stereotypes about women were completely wrong.

This moment where I realized that styerotypes were wrong about women made me think about so many different things but specificlly sports.  In sports there are so many gender norms like “only guys play football.” But there are so many instances of women playing football and doing well, for instance Sam Gordon. Sam is the star of her little league football team and has made national news for how well she plays. Sam has been the leading rusher and had the most touchdowns in here league the last two years. This proves that this girl is a legit football player who didn’t just have one lucky season. This is an amazing thing and has really showed me that this is yet another example of women breaking stereotypes. op3j-103304(Sam Gordon)

All these examples of women breaking the stereotypes that women aren’t as proficient as men have been broken to me. Weather it be in the military, in sports, or just in everyday life i am excited to have this new outlook. I will never hold on to the traditional belief that women must do one thing because thats how it has always been. I am forever mentally changed away from stereotypes surrounding women.

The Change in Football

American football, surly thought as America’s game because of its exclusiveness to North America and its people. This is a game in which there injuries to the head, neck and spine can be very dangerous and in some extreme cases deadly. Football started in 1869 in Rutgers stadium when they played Princeton. Football back then was a shell of the game that we all know today.

Back when the first game was played the forward pass was not a thing and the football was more like a basketball. As the years went bye the game became more violent. With the invention of the facemask, which was first used in the late 50’s, people now had protection for their face. This means now you can lead with your head when making a tackle, this is when many of the injuries started to come to fruition. Over the years following that helmets, shoulder pads, and other protective measures got better and better. However, even today with the equipment at its very best and most technologically advanced we still have more injuries then ever. Why is this?

The answer to this is simple; the players are bigger, stronger, and faster then ever before. From young ages kids are working out and conditioning to be great football players, I know this from experience. From drinking protein shakes when I was very young to work out sessions during grade school and even running wind sprints at recess to better myself football players at higher levels have dedicated heir lives to this sport. So naturally, when you and all your opponents are “bred” to play this sport you make athletes who are so big, strong, and fast that when they hit each other the energy they are exerting on each other is so vast that you are likely to have injuries.

The way to prevent this is changing the rules of the padding in football. In football you have a helmet and shoulder pads but your head is still vulnerable to “whip lash” injuries because your neck allows you your head to move freely. There is equipment used to help prevent this called “Cowboy Collars.”

collar football (Football player wearing a Cowboy Collar)

Cowboy Collars come in all shapes and sizes but they all do generally the same thing, which is restrict the head from whipping back and forth. I believe if we make a rule mandating wearing Cowboy Collar collars then it would make football a safer sport. Not only would this benefit the players it would not change how football is played. This simple rule would not only make football a safer sport to watch, it would also not change football and how this great game is played.

What are these Games Teaching Us?

All in a game is an interesting topic in today’s society especially when it comes to video games and all the topics and genres that these video games cover. Recently I have purchased and played a new video game called Shadow of Mordor. This is a game in which you are hunting down Orc chiefs and killing them. For every Orc Chief you kill you gain power and the Orcs will talk about how ruthless you were while killing that specific Chief. Ok, so why are you telling me about a new video game that just came out? The reasoning for me talking about this video game is because it is concerned with how you come to power and how one should rule.
In our discussion we talked about the Melian Dialogue, which dealed with concerns of how one should lead and how their actions shape the way the people see them. In this the Athenians want the Melians to surrender and pay them tribute or they will destroy the Melian city. The Melians chose not to surrender so now the Athenians are faced with a choice. Do nothing to the people who have done no wrong and be looked at as weak, or follow through on the destruction of their city and look like a strong ruler to others. The Athenians decide to look strong and kill these innocent people and destroy their town. This story along with so many video games now in days to me are preaching that violence is the only way to be strong and lead.
If our youth are constantly playing these violent games where in order to lead they must be the most ruthless and feared then will this transfer over into everyday life? The fact of the matter is yes it could and has. In one extreme case a teenage male went and robbed a convince store and killed the store clerk for no reason. When the young teen was investigated and interviewed about why he did what he had done he responded that was just doing what he did in a video game called Grand Theft Auto. This is a game in which shooting, stealing, and doing drugs


(Grand Theft Auto portraying guns and other violent things)

is encouraged to become powerful. This game along with so many others basically align with what happens in the Melian Dialogue, and we should be weary of what this violent culture can do to our people.
In Hindsight this blog post is not saying that if you play video games you are going to be a murder, or a drug dealer. What this is trying to convey is that you should always be careful and aware of the games you are playing and the messages these games are sending you. This blog should also get you to realize that you don’t have to be violent and ruthless to lead, you just need to know how to captivate and excite the people who you are trying to lead.

Wyatt Shallman