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Friday, September 06, 2013

California fires cross country coach DiMarco

http://www.whittierdailynews.com/sports/20130905/california-fires-cross-country-coach-dimarco

This was the coach DiMarco's response at prepcaltrack.com.  Just an unfortunate situation all the way around.

"First off, let me just say thank you for the positive responses. It has not been an easy couple of weeks and I have experienced things I never thought I would ever experience in my life time. I prefer not to comment on this online but I do want to make a point real quick. I do not blame a single athlete for telling their parents. Some of the blisters were pretty bad looking and as a parent I too would be concerned if my child came home with them on their hands. I do not blame parents for voicing their opinions to my administration (I actually self-reported it as soon as I saw the first blisters). So please don't blame my athletes... while I tried to teach them about responsibility the end result did not accomplish that goal. My problem lies in my districts response! First offense total accident with acknowledgment by my district that they believe me when I say that I never meant for this to happen yet the punishment suggest otherwise. I understand the need to investigate and leave no stone unturned in finding the truth but when you have a coach who loves his athletes and would never do anything to harm them make a mistake, turn himself in and literally border on depression in the days following the incident express nothing but remorse for the situation and explain his reason why he chose the surface (we don't have true grass fields, we have grass with flowers and hundreds of bees where my athletes have been stung multiple times running barefoot or bear crawling in the past). I chose the surface we had used to do bear crawls hundreds of times as part of our weight room workout which never in the past did one athlete ever get a blister from... Common sense would suggest that the surface that was safe of risk would be better than the surface that has had nothing but risk in the past. This particular time I was wrong and while no one feels worse than I... in the end what matters is athletes were injured and it was my fault. I have been charged with corporal punishment (which I do not believe is true) as bear crawls are not something cross country teams do (or as I was told)... While I don't know what my future holds I only wish the best for my athletes... they are in my opinion the real losers in this unfortunate situation and for that I will never forgive myself. Again, thank you for the kind words, they mean a lot to me!"

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Does this guy know how to form a coherent sentence? I can't be bothered to try and decode an illiterate mess.

Steve Palladino said...

The attitudes on "punishment" are troubling. Bear crawls? Extra miles would be condoned? Really?
WTF is going on in SoCal?
For the coaches, what would be the appropriate response to an athlete who has not turned in requisite paperwork at this time of the season?

Albert Caruana said...

You just have to be proactive and remind the kids about the upcoming deadline. If they can't get the paperwork done in a timely fashion, then they can't participate. I think that is "punishment" enough. We all know about other sports using running as a punishment so we are no better when we do the same with any type of physical exercise as a punishment.

It's a tough lesson for coach DiMarco to learn but we can either be hard headed and do things the way they have been done or you can adapt to what is acceptable now.

hank said...

Hmmmm, gotta call you out on that one Albert. It's not punishment, it's a natural consequence as long as they know what the rules are in advance. At Lynbrook, if you're late for practice, you do pushups - the kids knew this. If I failed an audit at HP I didn't get a raise, I knew this. Always a teaching moment - sometimes for the kids, sometimes for the coach.

hank

Anonymous said...

Bear crawls in 100 degrees on pavement.

I don't think this is corporal punishment but its not thinking.

Steve Palladino said...

Hank, with sincere respect, what would have been your "natural consequences" of not turning in requisite paperwork? That was my question. It was not a question of semantics.
Most "paperwork" that is turned in at this time of year is requisite to participating on the team. If an athlete fails to turn in requisite paperwork, do any of the "natural consequences" inherent to being a member of the team apply? IOW, if an athlete fails to meet the paperwork requirements of being on a team, does the coach have any "jurisdiction" in doling out corporal (or physical, if you wish) "natural consequences" to someone who is technically not part of the team?
I think that Albert responded to this point.
Of course, I have no idea if the case in question actually involved requisite paperwork, which is why I posed my question as a general question to coaches following this thread.
Your pal,
SteveP

Anonymous said...

Interestingly enough, if the paperwork is not turned in they are not technically part of the team and therefore cannot be punished. I agree that non participation is an appropriate consequence.

hank said...

Steve
If they don't have their physicals, etc in then they can't even come to practice (and they know this). If they don't have their travel forms in for a particular race, then when I post who is running in what race, there would be an "*" next to their name which means "pending paperwork". No paperwork, no run. But the other kids on the team can see if one of their teammates is a possible "no-run" and the peer pressure seems to take care of it.

hank

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