Some thoughts on sportsmanship: speaking of Sam Kendricks

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The instagram photo above is pretty typical of what is found on the social media world. But, dear readers, there are a few things that I would like to point out.

Sam Kendricks has been traveling around Europe for much of February. During that time, his unbeaten series of 17 wins in a row. Sam lost to Piotr Lisek, the silver medalist from London Worlds at two straight meets during his indoor tour.

Sam Kendricks is a very likable person. He is an easy person to interview as well and he is well liked on the circuit, even by some athletes who might be described, as, well, mercurial.

At the recent U.S. Champs, Scott Houston and Sam Kendricks were pretty even up until 5.78 meters. Up until 5.78 meters, Sam Kendricks did not miss an attempt. But, alas, at 5.83 meters, Sam missed three straight times.

This is where Scott Houston, a college assistant track coach, cleared 5.83 meters, which was a PB for him. With that, Scott scored his first national title.

Houston_Scott1c-USind18.jpgScott Houston, pole vault, photo by PhotoRun.net

Was Sam Kendricks angry with his loss? Well, if he was, he sure did not show it. And re read the Instagram, and his congrats to his competitors.

Kendricks_Sam1a-USin18.JPGSam Kendricks, photo by PhotoRun.net

Sam Kendricks is a pretty extreme example in our sport, but, for the most part, competitors are supportitive of each other, except, well, during the competition.

Sportsmanship is an important lesson to learn and model. In this world of partisanship on everything from politics to food choices, it is even more important, that, in our sport, the role models that the young athletes and fans look up to, give examples of how to compete and respect each other.

Thanks Sam Kendricks. You reminded me of just how important it is to challenge ourselves, but also how one can pay respect to his or her competitor.

Kendricks-Duplantis-LaVillenie-Lausanne17.jpgSam Kendricks, Mondo Duplantis, Renaud Lavillenie, photo by PhotoRun.net

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