First Sportsmanship Day Symposium unfolding today

softball players carry opponentSUNY Oswego’s first Sportsmanship Day Symposium, 2:20 to 5:45 p.m. March 3, will examine whether society is winning the battle for fair play, respect and civility.

Faculty member Tim Delaney, whose specialties include sociology of sports, is organizing the multidisciplinary event tying in with the 19th annual National Sportsmanship Day.

“I came up with this idea because I have been teaching a course on sport sociology for many years now and was amazed how few students were aware of National Sportsmanship Day,” he said. “The reason few people have heard of National Sportsmanship Day is because it is not publicized properly.”

He assembled a lineup of mostly SUNY Oswego professors looking at sportsmanship as it relates to economics, history, media, philosophy, political science, psychology and sociology. A student-athlete panel will provide participants’ perspectives on sportsmanship.

All talks will be free and will take place in Room 101 of Lanigan Hall.

“I have two sport sociology books coming out in the next two months that emphasize sportsmanship,” Delaney said. “My co-author, Tim Madigan, and I feel very strongly about promoting sportsmanship.”

In light of stories like New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez embroiled in steroids, a basketball team beating another school 100-0 and the unending police blotter involving athletes, Delaney believed it seemed more important than ever to promote sportsmanship.

“Although each academic discipline may have their own definition of sportsmanship, it is safe to say that it involves fair play, decency and respect for the competitor,” Delaney said. “We define it as conduct and attitude considered as benefiting participants in sports, especially fair play, courtesy, good spirit and grace in losing.”

For more information, contact Delaney at 312-3410 or tdelaney@oswego.edu, or visit the National Sportsmanship Day Web site at www.internationalsport.com/NSD.

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PHOTO CAPTION: Great sports—One of the most noted acts of sportsmanship occurred last year in a Division II softball playoff game when Western Oregon’s Sara Tucholsky blew out her knee rounding first base after hitting her first-ever home run. Since rules prevent her teammates from touching Tucholsky, or she would be called out, Central Washington University players Mallory Holtman and Liz Wallace carried her from base to base, letting her touch each, so she could have her three-run homer. Even though doing so allowed the winning runs to score and eliminated the home team, the act brought a standing ovation from the Central Washington crowd and tears to the eyes of many players. (Courtesy allnews.com)

CONTACT: Dr. Tim Delaney, 312-3410, tdelaney@oswego.edu

(Posted: Feb 17, 2009)

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