The Backpage Term 4 Week 2

Welcome back to term 4 and the start of our summer sport season.  I would like to thank all of our Directors, Coordinators and Coaches who were involved in camps, tours and training our boys over the holidays.  Your hard work is appreciated by the entire College community. 

Sport is at the core of The Scots College and is fundamental to the development of a Scots boy.  Every adult that a boy is involved with has the ability to provide positive leadership.  To start the 2018 sport season, I would like to share with you my thoughts around the importance of competitive sport in schools by answering a question I often hear: is high school sport too competitive?

Picture this: your son comes home and tells you that he wants to trial for his school’s top Basketball team. In your mind are all the right reasons: teamwork, sportsmanship, fitness, the building of friendships and the lessons that healthy competition provides. You fully support your boy, as any parent would ­– no one could debate the positive benefits of boys being involved in a bit of healthy competition.

Following weeks of trials your son comes home to tell you that he has ‘made’ the team. You drive to his first Saturday match and find your place in the stands with the rest of the parents and take in the atmosphere.

As the game progresses, you notice a few things that you had not expected: a coach loses his temper and yells at a player, a player on the opposite team gets sent off for being disrespectful to the referee, and a parent from your son’s team shouts a negative comment to one of the opposing team’s players.

Your son’s team loses and the coach calls all the boys into a huddle and from the sidelines it appears that he is pointing out each of their mistakes. You wait at the exit of the gym and watch your son as he walks towards you, head down, and ask yourself: “Is this competitive environment healthy?”

Unfortunately, the story above is all too common

Is high school sport too competitive? Well, I’ll come back to this question in a bit. First, let me explain something fundamental about playing sport.

In high school gyms, pitches and pools – anywhere where boys can be involved in competition we can see the above scenario play out. Our initial instinct is to blame the competition itself, drawing the conclusion that sport has become too competitive and that it is bringing out the worst in everyone involved.

I believe that this is the wrong conclusion.

As high school educators, coaches and parents, we bear a great responsibility in teaching our boys about healthy competition, creating healthy environments, and using competition to teach boys morals and values. If all of this is done correctly, competitive sport can be a great tool in teaching boys how to be a man.

Let me explain…

Every adult that a boy is in contact with has the potential to lead him. Therefore, the responsibility of creating a healthy competitive environment lies not just with the teacher or coach but also with the parents.

There are two types of leadership that you can offer a boy involved in competitive sport: transactional and transformational.

Transactional leaders see sport as an opportunity for them to gain something. This may be the prestige of coaching a winning team, career advancement, or even living out their own unfulfilled dreams. Transformational leaders on the other hand, view sport as an opportunity to teach boys lessons, to have an impact on them that will last throughout their lives, regardless of winning or losing. Great transformational leaders can create positive and healthy environments, where players thrive, even in the most intense and competitive environments.

Transactional versus Transformational Leaders

Leaders who have a transactional approach to high school sport create unhealthy environments. Here are some obvious signs of transactional leaders:

  • Relives their own glory days and often tells stories of their own achievements.

  • Participates in drills and training as a means of showing off rather than playing to the level of the children they are coaching.

  • A disregard for rules/safety.

  • Shows disrespect to athletes, parents, other teams, other coaches or officials.

  • Identifies the team’s wins or losses as their own.

  • Punishes athletes when the team does not win or when a player makes a mistake.

  • Rewards good performance with playing time.

  • Shows favouritism.

  • Belittles athletes.

  • Shows little interest in creating a community environment by getting families involved.

Transformational leaders have the ability to create healthy environments in the most intense competition and use the competition as means to building players as a whole person. Here is how you spot them:

  • They have a strong focus on building teamwork, pride, responsibility, hard work, respect and sportsmanship.

  • Use wins and losses to teach life lessons.

  • They teach athletes how to handle wins and losses with dignity and good sportsmanship.

  • They make constructive and positive correction.

  • Hold athletes accountable for their actions.

  • Give athletes appropriate responsibilities.

  • Welcome interactions with parents and build a healthy team community.

  • Understand that their role as a coach is about shaping young athletes lives.

Is High School Sport Too Competitive?

https://www.ted.com/talks/john_wooden_on_the_difference_between_winning_and_success#t-882

John Wooden, one of the greatest transformational coaches in the history of sport coined his own definition of success which was “peace of mind attained only through self-satisfaction in knowing you made the effort to do the best of which you are capable.”

As highlighted by this phrase, with the right leadership and with parents understanding their role in leadership, high school sport can be one of the most important tools in shaping a young man’s life. Over-competitiveness of high school sport is often, and wrongly in my opinion, highlighted as a negative but the potential to shape fine young men is too great a benefit to overlook.

Over the next week all boys in senior years will be voting on our summer sports captains for the 2018 season.  Following this vote, interviews for these positions will be held with the Principal. We look forward to welcoming a great set of sport leaders.

Good luck to all of our teams this Saturday.

Scots to the Fore!

Mr Graham Pattison

Director of Sport

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From Ed White, Senior Sportsmaster

Last weekend was the first weekend of trials against other schools.

Basketball had games away vs Barker with the 1sts and 2nds going down. Well done to Ted Ferguson who scored 50 points in Scots 71 point score.

Cricket was up against Riverview and Barker. The 1st XI had a very impressive win against a very good Riverview team. Zack Hersov scoring 40* and Jack Attenborough 40.

Great results for Waterpolo with 5 wins from 8 teams. The 1sts showing great pre season form with a big win.

Tennis had some rain delays which affected results. Scots were up 3-0 when rain came.

Shooting, Volleyball and Rowing all had internal trials

This weekend we have more trials vs St Joseph’s and Shore in most fixtures.

From Brent Wilsmore, Prep Sportsmaster

Sport resumed with Round 7 games on Saturday 14 October, with some excellent results. Our boys also returned from a highly successful tour of Melbourne with games against Scotch, Haileybury and Trinity. Charlie Dixon also returned from the Australian Rugby Primary Championships in Darwin undefeated. This week we have 11 boys participating in the NSWPSSA Athletics. In Summer Sport we play Kings and Knox in the Cricket; Waverley and Trinity in the Basketball; Newington and Riverview in Tennis and Reddam in the Water Polo.

Prep Basketball enjoyed a successful start to the season, with games against St Patrick's, Cranbrook and Mosman. The Prep 1sts played well across their three games in Melbourne over the weekend as part of the Prep Summer Sports Tour. All of the games in Melbourne were close and the boys learnt from the experience.

Mr James Tracey

Preparatory Basketball Coordinator

Well done to all cricketers for an excellent start back to Prep Cricket. A special mention to the First XI Squad who travelled to Melbourne for the Summer Sports Tour. All boys were exceptional representatives of the College and played with great sportsmanship throughout the Tour. Good luck to all boys in Round 8 this weekend.  

Mr Greg Clarence

Preparatory Cricket Coordinator

After a 6 month break for the Winter Season it was very impressive to see the strong results that we recorded in Round 7 across the program. Both C-Teams had impressive victories with the quality of Tennis on display an indication of the hard work that a lot of boys had put in over the off-season. Special mention must go to the A-Team who performed incredibly well on the Melbourne Tour winning 85% of matches across the three fixtures.

Mr James Bruce

Preparatory Tennis Coordinator

Water Polo boys went really well on the weekend especially the Tour boys who went through undefeated in Melbourne. Great sportsmanship and maturity was shown. Great start to Term 4.

Ms Elisha Smith

Preparatory Water Polo Coordinator

From Daniel Markham, Director of The Mind Body Heart Pathway & Head of PDHPE 

The amount of younger students attending the MBH sessions has been inspiring! It is fantastic to see these students really take advantage of the opportunities available to them within the MBH program. In a few short years time the students that invest heavily now in their physical, mental and character development by capitalising on the services and expertise available to them will have incredible success in their future years. The harder you work, the luckier you get!
A lot of hard work goes on behind the scenes to develop the most sophisticated, innovative and evidence based program possible and the MBH team continues to pioneer in the development of adolescent athletes. Education is at the core of the program and the robust ‘Performance Series’ workshops bring experts from the private sector to talk with the students on a range of topics pivotal to adolescent development and performance.The next installment of the series will be covering the importance of developing flexibility to enhance recovery and performance. Please view details below:

Presenters: Representatives from the ‘Stretch Studio’ Fitness Franchise
When: 27th of October 2017 Week 3 Term 4- 3.30pm-4.45pm
Where: John Solomon Sports Club
What: Workshop format covering:
How to develop Flexibility
Benefits to recovery and performance
‘Hands on’ stretching routines
Who: Available to all students years 7-12


Looking forward to you to seeing a big turnout of students at this edition of the Performance Series! Please book attendance using the MBH App.

Story of The Week - Cricket - National Championships Selection Trials

During the recent school holidays, 2 Scots cricketers were involved in selection trials for the NSW Metro and NSW Country U19's teams to participate in the National Championships.

Zack Hersov took the most of his opportunities after being called into the trial squad by scoring a century in one of his two matches. Unfortunately, even with this massive score, Zack was not selected for the final team, but his innings impressed many who saw it.

Ryan O'Beirne, who is currently sitting his HSC, performed equally as well in his trial matches for the NSW Country team and was selected for his 3rd consecutive National Championship.

The Scots Cricket program wishes Ryan all the best for the upcoming tournament in early December.

Mr Ben Sawyer

Director of Cricket 

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Zack Hersov

Scots to the Fore!

Mr Graham Pattison

Director of Sport