XC Team Disqualified

November 2, 2017

In Michigan, the Northville High School boys' cross country team was disqualified from advancing to the state meet due to runners wearing undergarments that did not match. According to mlive.com, the ruling to disqualify Northville was based on Michigan High School Athletic Association rules, which require that runners who compete as a team wear matching uniforms, including underwear. Tim Dalton, Northville's coach, complained about the decision, but the appeals group ruled in the association's favor.

Dalton took responsibility for the violation, but said the MHSAA could have handled it better.

"I'll take ownership of it as a coach, I get that, I made a mistake," Dalton said. "But I also feel it could have been handled much differently. There were other teams in that meet that were wearing different undergarments, but not addressed. And I saw evidence of that as well. I've seen multiple times where they (the officials) come over and they just have a conversation with a kid, a teachable moment, a conversation. They chose not to go that route. They took it a step further by disqualifying all seven."

In response to further protests by Northville, the MHSAA decided to allow Nick Couyoumjian, the top runner for Northville, advance to the state meet. Couyoumjian posted on Twitter to share the news, as well as to “commend (his) team for their fortitude through this tough situation."

From New World Of Coaching
If you are straightforward with young people, they will usually respect you. This is much better than fabricating something on the spot, and your athletes will usually understand and accept this approach.
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