Athletes As Role Models

Athletes As Role Models Athletes As Role Models An athlete with undying will, tremendous courage, awesome defense, and unbelievable scoring. Michael Jordan, a man who seems to be without a weakness, makes a great role model for youths and adults (Role Models on). Michael Jordan shows he is also a great person off the court by the way he has given his money to charities and has dealt with the difficulties in his life. This is a person who is looked up to and admired by people everywhere. Michael Jordan is a role model, just as all athletes in the spotlight. When people become professional athletes or any kind of athlete that is brought into the public eye, they become a role model.A role model can set good examples by being educated, having good morals, and by staying drug free; or they can set bad examples by doing the complete opposites of these actions.

As role models it is important that athletes show the youth of today the importance of getting an education. It seems that high school and college basketball players have not been doing a very good job of setting this example. A record 37 underclassmen, plus three high school students, made themselves available for the recent National Basketball Association draft, adding to the growing concern of many that more and more young men, particularly black men, will abandon educational pursuits for hoop dreams. (Farrell 15) When younger kids see these players pass up their education for the attempt to get rich quick it sends the message that education isn’t that important.John Thompson says, One of the dangers of what is going on is that it minimizes the value of an education (Farrell15). There is a very small few of amateur basketball players that make it to the NBA, and this is another reason why leaving education for the NBA is not such a good idea. The way things are going college might be looked at as a momentary preparation for the NBA.

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College coaches will be trying to impress upon recruits how soon they can get them ready to play professionally, and the educational element will go out the window, says Alex Wood (Farrell 16). Some athletes have taken the opportunity to show kids that education is important and is something that should be valued. The Michigan State University athletes are involved in a program in which they go to kids in the classroom to talk and hang out with these younger students.This is both good for the college student athletes and the younger students. Kevin Carr says, We’ve been wanting to do this for a while, It’s definitely a way to help our athletes to get in the spirit of voluntarism(Reaching Out).

This program is good for the kids because it lets them take good advice from the older more experienced college student athletes. Ike Reese said, We go to school just like they do. I like to show kids that athletes can be role models and that we’re not untouchable (Reaching Out).The program also shows that good athletes can also be respectable students, this is really good for the young kids to see (Reaching Out).

When these athletes talk to the kids in the classrooms it helps inspire the kids to strive towards their goals and dreams. Part of being a role model includes setting a good moral standard for the people who watch sports on television especially the kids that watch them. Athletes can deeply affect children at a critical stage in development. Many kids from about 8 to 12 years old, looking for examples of success, fantasize about becoming athletes and identify with them (Wilstein B1).It is obvious then, the things that the athletes do on television do affect the way the children will act.

Fighting, taunting ,and trash-talking among the pro and college players, shown repeatedly on television, lead to similar actions in football, basketball and baseball in high schools (Wilstein B1). It seems as though there has been a lot of negative examples in sports world lately. One of the negative examples was published in the December 23rd issue of Sports Illustrated of last year. The material that was published was an interview with Atlanta Braves pitcher John Rocker.

In this Article Rocker used some rather vulgar language. He also made some very negative remarks about the New York subway system. Rocker complained about having to sit with some kid with purple hair next to some queer with AIDS right next to some dude who just got out of jail for the fourth time next to some 20 year old mom with four kids (Rockers Arrival). Another example of the negative occurrences in sports was when hockey player Marty McSorley hit fellow hockey player Donald Brashear on the head with a hockey stick, which gave Brashear a concussion. Today in sports there is a large amount of violent attitudes and actions, this example is just one of them. Ken Keiper, the chairmen of the NCAA’s Division II baseball, talked about the brawls in major league baseball.

Keiper said, I don’t see the mound-charging brawls yet in the youth leagues, but if they continue at the major league level, the kids will emulate them and it will definitely come (Wilstein B1). Some athletes set good examples by doing good things for others. Deion Sanders is one of these athletes that has done something positive for the people. Sanders gave food, toys, and other goods to the community for an organization called Feed The Children. Sanders said in a brief interview, I’d like to point you to something everlasting. I’d like to give you peace, give you joy, and love (Baker 1D).

He also wanted to remind people that after he gives this food to the people that there will still be hungry people in the world, and it is our job to help these less fortunate people out. Sanders also mentioned how he used to be the bad mouth D …