We appreciate all the work the PIAA does to provide excellence in selecting officials and providing an atmosphere of safety for all athletes.
I have grown up with basketball from the 1940s and '50s in District 9 Brookville.
I think I should know basketball by now, and I'll admit I'm concerned.
Basketball has changed to a physical, out-of-control, and actually dangerous game to where helmets and knee pads are really required.
What has happened to my clean game of basketball is horrible.
Last Thursday night, we witnessed a free-for-all at Bellwood against local rival Tyrone. Twice boys were diving for the ball on the floor, and it came close to concussion time, which we are trying to avoid.
If we are going to continue to allow the players to go to the floor for a loose ball, then we should have the officials running to the site much more quickly to avoid all the horseplay going on to try to get the ball. Twice Bellwood players had to leave the court because they showed blood.
One returned to play with each nostril packed with rolled up paper or gauze.
It is now time to take correcting measures before a real serious incident occurs.
I do believe in allowing the athletes to play without so many whistles, but this is becoming a real issue where officials must control the game better by quickly calling a jump ball before we hit the floor.
The officials I?saw were professional old-timers from the 1970s, which we have watched since our son played. I cannot condemn them at all as most officials are like this now in letting a free-for-all happen and with far too much physical roughness.
The game has also become so fast and even with three officials, they are not consistent in their foul calling. I also believe that all officials should go back to a class on what is really a foul. This needs better determination.
Please hear my plea and begin to seriously discuss this very disconcerting image of what a good game of basketball should really be.
Now is a good time to begin as we close out another year of exciting basketball in our area.
J. Perry Haupt
JoePa deserved better
I am writing in regard to the firing of coach Joe Paterno on Nov. 9, 2011.
In his public statement concerning the scandal, he stated that "I wish I had done more" and that it was "the great sorrows of my life."
These are words that take some accountability for what took place.
Recently there were accusations made at Syracuse University of child molestation against an assistant coach. Head basketball coach Jim Boeheim responded to the accusations by saying that the victims involved were lying and trying to get rich.
He later apologized when more evidence came to light.Coach Boeheim continues to coach basketball at Syracuse University.
Am I missing something here?
Apparently the Board of Trustees at Syracuse have a better understanding of due process than the Board of Trustees at Penn State. After 61 years of dedicating his life to the school, he deserved more than a phone call stating he had been terminated.
He at the very least deserved the patience and loyalty shown to Coach Boeheim.
Kevin Taylor, Altoona
Cheer for your team, not against mine
This letter is to remind fans at PIAA sporting events that the PIAA champions good sportsmanship.
Fans should cheer for their teams and not berate other teams. I felt compelled to write this letter after sitting among a group of young boys of high school age at the Tyrone-Tussey Mountain basketball game Saturday, Feb. 11.
This group of Tussey Mountain fans went beyond cheering.
Others sitting around do not want to hear profanity. We do not want to hear foul-mouth comments about opposing players and coaches.
Cheer for your team, let the referees coach, and enjoy some good high school basketball.
By the way: I have witnessed this conduct by many other schools, as well as Tyrone fans.
I just would like to enjoy a game without the constant cursing and degrading remarks. High basketball is a great game, so just sit and enjoy, please. There are other fans around.
John Walter, Tyrone