Praise for proposal to raise athletes' GPAFrom: Jeannie R...

READERS WRITE

September 02, 1992

Praise for proposal to raise athletes' GPA

From: Jeannie R. Hutchins

Millersville

I read with alarm the article by Pat O'Malley ["New rules on athletes may diminish the future of high school," Anne Arundel County Sun, August 23, 1992] with regard to the raise in grade point average requirements in Anne Arundel County.

I am a graduate of Andover High School and, like numerous others in my Class of 1988, I managed to hold a GPA of well over 2.0 and play sports and participate in student and class government.

I have also managed, like many in my class with those same qualities, to attend college full time and graduate with a degree. Mr. O'Malley and many of those who are against the rise in GPA for athletes are against a strong, solid base of young people for our future.

Yes, a team is an exceptional place to build skills of leadership and excellence, but first you must be able to read and write and add the appropriate number of points to a score.

I agree that the GPA requirement should be across the board, but one does not cut off your nose to spite your face.

All good ideas must take root somewhere. One day, the GPA will roll around to all clubs and organizations, but for now, coaches, ,, parents, administrators and especially teachers should be praising the decision.

As for the comment about learning more from a team than from a textbook, I am sure even Mr. O'Malley realizes that his experience on a baseball diamond do not even come close to his high school degree, college journalism course or that math course, once he tried to negotiate the settlement on a house or contract, finance a child's education, or even figure out an ERA or batting average.

I think it is time we stopped trying to give young people the wrong idea. Yes, athletics is a very important part of developing yourself. However, it is not the only part and by far not the most important.

If a student cannot excel in the classroom, then he or she cannot possibly excel on a field or mat. I think the one most important thing forgotten in our strive for Division I athletes and winning teams is that these are impressionable young people. They are not athletic machines through which we can relive our high school glory if enough pressure is put on them. If coaches are to be good examples, then they must have the highest standards of all.

Yes, it may cost a few points, or it may cost a team an entire game or competition, but in the long run, a young person will remember that someone, somewhere took a stand and held a firm grip on education first.

Friends of stadium discuss their goals

From: Dave Conrad

President

Board of directors

Friends of Joe Cannon Stadium (FOJCS)

In response to Pat O'Malley's column of August 3, we would like to correct some inaccuracies and misconceptions made by Mr. O'Malley in reference to the Friends of Joe Cannon Stadium, Lew Holmes and the recent Continental Amateur Baseball Association (CABA) Tournament.

First, we'd like to say that, although it was not our original intention, the FOJCS ended up sponsoring the CABA Tournament, financially and otherwise, mainly due to a lack of support from other sources. And while we're not looking for thanks or congratulations, we think it should be given where credit is due.

We'll be the first to echo the praise O'Malley heaped on Lew for his long service to youth baseball. In fact, we were pleased to have the honor of presenting Lew with the award for Outstanding Service to Amateur Baseball at the FOJCS First Annual Scholar-Athlete Awards Dinner held June 2.

The FOJCS has been in existence only since January. We're proud of our remarkable accomplishments in that short time:

* the Scholar-Athlete Banquet, honoring outstanding contribution and performance in amateur baseball while promoting excellence on the field and in the classroom.

* the Anne Arundel County Senior All-Star Baseball Classic, showcasing the county's top high school senior players.

* the CABA Tournament, pitting top local teams against teams from across the country.

In so doing, we are promoting Anne Arundel County as a hotbed of baseball talent and promoting Joe Cannon Stadium as a first-class baseball facility.

All three events have been successful, bringing together various factions and leagues working toward such common goals as providing volunteer support and financial assistance to Cannon Stadium, improving playing conditions for local teams, and furthering community and corporate involvement.

Like Lew, we're all dedicated, sincere and unselfish, but we realize that the stadium was not built, nor the FOJCS created, to serve special interests. But rest assured that Cannon Stadium is being run strictly for amateur teams. The county makes sure of that and the FOJCS concurs as evidenced by its by-laws.

Concerning the election of our president, Dave Conrad, it's true that he was appointed at the first organizational meeting, but the Board of Directors formally elected him at our first Board meeting.

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