In a game as rough and tumble as football, it is surprising that there is etiquette both on and off the field. Here are some of the rules I’ve learned.
|You can crush me now, but if you hit me three seconds from now, after the whistle is blown, you’ll get thrown out of the game. (Our team wore pink last Friday in support of breast cancer awareness and research.)|
1. Hitting your teammate after a play is over is supportive while hitting an opposing player is a personal foul. We saw a player from another team whack our running back on the helmet. It was definitely not intended as supportive. He got ejected from the game. I’m not sure our guy even noticed but the fans in the stands sure did, and so did the referee. If one of our players had whacked him on the helmet, or chest bumped him hard enough to knock him over, or smacked him on the butt, that would be ok.
2. Make noise when the other team has the ball. This is somewhat counter-intuitive, but the idea is essentially to deafen the offense. Our new band director is struggling with this, and is probably mystified when parents start yelling “SHUT UP” as she directs the band when we are in possession of the ball, and then urge her to play when the other team is in the red zone.
3. Anything cheerleaders promise to do to celebrate a score is a social contract. For example, our cheerleaders do pushups equal to our total score every time we score. During one particularly successful game they tried to substitute jumping jacks. The crowd booed until the pushups were produced. On a side note, junior high cheerleaders do better pushups than varsity cheerleaders.
4. A coach randomly chosen by the players must submit to the drinking water bath after a victory. Sorry, we know it’s cold. Wear a raincoat for the fourth quarter if you don’t like it.
5. Home team: keep your insulting nasty little urchins away from the visitor’s side. If you choose to let them run wild, and they choose to yell mean things at our players on the sidelines, our dads WILL chase them off. ’nuff said.
6. The spectator in front of you will stand up during exciting plays. 6a. The stands will start to vibrate on 4th down, when the other team has the ball (see rule #2). You and your video camera will have to deal with it.
7. Do not try to talk to a player’s parents about random crap during a game. They will ignore you and you can’t get miffed about it. Try to apply this rule in other areas of life, including dance recitals, band concerts, and graduation ceremonies.
Seven is an odd number to stop at, but it is exactly the number of points we needed to win our varsity game last week, so I’ll consider it lucky. Junior high didn’t fare so well, but we have our final games coming up, against our local rival no less! Our hopes are as high coming down the home stretch as they were on week one!