Give and Take: Sunday letters
Coach deserves better
High school coaches in Spokane have only one-year contracts. Failure to be offered a new contract has happened in the past, but I have never seen another coach treated the way your reporters have handled the change in the men’s basketball head coaching position at LC.
Jeff Norton, after 30 years working in the athletic department, including nine years as head basketball coach, has been pilloried in your sports section twice: May 24 with headlines “Norton out as coach at LC”; June 3 as the replacement coach was championed, words such as ‘fired’ and ‘dismissed’ referring to Norton were unnecessarily used.
Coaches at the high school level face incredible pressure these days from parents, fans, and administrators, where win-loss records and ‘playing time’ are often at odds. With little financial remuneration for the long hours spent, rewards must come in knowing you have helped to positively influence a young person’s future in some way.
Jeff Norton’s countless hours, helping many of his players off the court as well as on, have been overlooked.
I ask that you review your approach to reporting on high school coaching changes in the future. It is a tough-enough job without this.
Belmont a true measure
In as much as I, along with many other people wanted, to see California Chrome become the 12th Triple Crown winner I was disappointed that he just couldn’t make up the distance moving from the inside rail to the outside in the longest of the three Triple Crown races.
What was more disappointing was the poor sportsmanship displayed by the horse’s co-owner, Steve Coburn. Coburn felt that California Chrome would have stood a much better chance if the horses that ran in the Belmont also ran in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness and that only those horses would have been allowed to run in the Belmont Stakes.
He may have a point but there’s a big reason that there have only been 11 winners in almost 100 years of racing. It’s called beating all competition and the Triple Crown has run the same format for all that time. You win by beating all the others regardless of whether their last race was two weeks ago or two months ago.
That’s what sets true champions apart from also-rans.