Playing Well Together, by Larry Eder

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It has been about four days since I flew into Boston. The week of the Boston marathon is one of the most important weeks of the year for our sport. It is a litmus test of what is healthy, and not so healthy in the sport. What is fascinating is the amount of events that go on around the country during this week. Last weekend, there were eleven major marathons, including the Paris & Fortis Rotterdam marathons, plus the Arcadia Invitational, which is, in my mind, one the best track meets (at any level) in our sport. This weekend, however, should all be about the BAA Boston Marathon and it's 114th running.

Perhaps releases about fall marathons and fall marathon lotteries could be put off until the week after the marathon in question. Perhaps, instead of online bickering regarding disputed issues, perhaps the parties in question should find a way to work things out, in private, or keep your thoughts to yourselves. There are times when this sport looks a like an unruly group of grade schoolers on recess break, fighting about some green marbles.

The truth is this: if we every really want to develop real global sponsors, then the so-called professionals in this sport, both track & field and road running, have to look at the big picture, and start playing fair and being professional. They have no one but themselves to blame when major sponsors, with real bucks, look to professional walleye fishing, midget tossing, TV poker matches or other sports detritus instead of our sport.

The opinions above are not just my mine, but I have had comments from many observers and fans of the sport, wondering why our sport can not seem to work together.  The sad thing is, our sport is actually doing pretty well, but just imagine what would happen if the running community showed some sense of decorum and learned how to play well together!

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