YOU ARE HERE: IVPress HomeCollections

Our Opinion: Bad lessons

February 05, 2002

High school sports should be a fun, character-building, bonding experience for players, coaches and parents.

Too often high school sports denigrate into something far from all that and becomes mired in egos, envy and frustration.

Such seems to have happened with the Calexico High girls basketball program. The program is sinking in a quagmire of accusations, letters to the editor, angry meetings and demands for people's scalps.

And people wonder why some folks want to do away with interscholastic athletics.

We are not intimately involved with this case, but we do know some things.

We know that only a really stupid or angry coach would not use talented, well-schooled, well-behaved players. Coaches want to win and coaches want to keep their coaching jobs, so they try to put their best players on the floor, mat, field or any other venue of competition.

We know that Roberto Moreno is a fine and dedicated superintendent who has done much for the community, and while he may not have acted as promptly or in the way some parents may have wanted in this matter, we think he did what he thinks is right. We think the same of the school board in Calexico, which has been one of the best in the Valley in recent years and is filled with intelligent, community-minded people.


We don't know particularly well Jamie Chew, the embattled Calexico high girls varsity basketball coach, but we do know the program has been relatively successful during her tenure and was doing well again this year before the controversy went public and before some dissension-connected defections cut into her lineup.

We can't say whether certain girls should or should not be on the varsity, and we think padlocking the gym doors during tryouts was a bit overboard, but Chew's players appear to be fundamentally sound and some have gone on to play at the college level. Maybe that is to her credit or to someone else's. On that opinions seem to differ, too, as they do on almost every level in this mess.

If Chew has been personally vindictive or unfair against a player or players, as is the accusation, she should be disciplined. And if that kind of behavior continues, she should be removed. But we don't know how true any of that is.

We don't know who is wrong or right, but we do know that the wonderful experience some teens should be having is being ruined by adults. That is a sad occurrence, one we see all too often.

Imperial Valley Press Online Articles