I just had a pretty rough day at work, and I’ll probably be here well after my shift ends.
I’m tired, I’m cranky and I think I’m getting sick.
Right now, Cole Vanderbilt has it a lot worse than I do. Hopefully not for too much longer, though.
I feel sympathy for Vanderbilt, the Connell High School senior who has been the target of a great deal of negative attention over the last week or so. That’s after a video was posted last week on YouTube of him committing four hard fouls in a boys basketball game against Highland back on Dec. 22.
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I have seen the video, and yes, I believe Vanderbilt could have acted with more self-control in terms of his conduct during the game. Anyone who steps out onto the court needs to respect the game and opposing players at all times and act accordingly.
When I read some of the comments people have made on YouTube, in blogs and national websites it shocks me.
Then it infuriates me. The majority of the comments are disgusting.
It’s one thing to commit a foul in a basketball game. It’s another thing entirely to make a cowardly online attack of someone — a high school kid, in this case — you’re never likely going to meet face to face.
It’s understandable that people might have a passionate reaction to the sight of Vanderbilt clotheslining a player driving the lane. It’s not a pretty sight.
I also think there is much more to Cole than what we saw on the video. I hope he learns from this incident and comes out shining on the other side.
I wouldn’t even be addressing this unless Michael Christenson had posted the video online. I concur with Christenson that rough play like that should be dealt with immediately and firmly. However, I believe the manner in which he chose to distribute the video was as reckless as the fouls he decried.
Above all, I hope this raises awareness so that something like this doesn’t happen again. The damn thing has been sensationalized enough, so lets just let it be.
Vanderbilt let his emotions get the best of him during a heated game of basketball. Should he have to pay the price by bearing the brunt of thousands of cruel and ignorant remarks?
Lets forgive him and move on.