PRUETT COLUMN: Lessons to be learned

Published 5:11 pm Saturday, February 13, 2016

Sports entertain us all. It is why we pay so close attention to other people playing games.

The beauty is, sports are also around to teach us all life lessons. There were two such cases in the past few days.

First, there is the case of a senior Lamar Cardinals women’s basketball player quitting the team. Ja’Meisha Edwards informed coach Robin Harmony via text she was leaving the team with six games left on the schedule.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

I will not dump on Edwards. The time for any of that is over. The decision has been made and the team has to move on.

There is a lesson for all to learn here, though, and that lesson is — don’t quit. If you are unhappy about a situation, a coach is a coach for a reason. Talk to the person. They are human just like you. A coach might be able to help an athlete find a way to renew the player’s interest in a sport.

Teams change during a season. There is a constant learning that goes on, and it is up to the coach to fit the pieces together like a puzzle. Sometimes that puzzle has to have its pieces moved around for the betterment of the team.

This doesn’t mean one player is less important than any other player. The coach is just doing what he/she feels is best for the team.

So instead of quitting, sit down with the coach and learn. I can give you this guarantee: a coach’s door is always open to his/her players.

The second lesson learned over the last week is how to take a loss the right way. I defended Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton in this space last week, and boy did he make a fool out of me.

Newton reverted back to acting like a spoiled brat after the Panthers lost 24-10 to the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50. His answers to the media were short and then he had enough and walked away.

The problem is Newton was always the first to celebrate when the team was winning, and I had no problem with that. Now, Newton needs to learn how to lose and own up to the times when things do not go his way.

He needs to watch the press conference put on by Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson the year before. Wilson threw the interception to lose the Super Bowl to the New England Patriots, and he took full blame and gave the Patriots the credit.

Newton’s inability to show maturity when it mattered the most is a terrible example to set for the younger athletes who look up to him. Give credit where credit is due. Take responsibility for a loss and do not tuck your tail and run the first chance you get.

It hurts to lose, but Newton was the 50th quarterback to lose the big game on Sunday, so the pain he felt after the loss was nothing the world had never seen before.

Be a man. Take the loss, accept your part in it and find a positive way to represent your team, community and fans the right way.

Gabriel Pruett can be reached at 721-2436 or On Twitter: @PaNewsGabe.

About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

email author More by Gabriel