The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


The Student News Site of Gannon University since 1947


Joe Knows

Really, Serena, really? “You’re a hater, and unattractive… inside?” That’s the best you can do?

I thought Serena Williams needed work on her backhand, not her comebacks.

The truth is, the only thing Williams was guilty of Sunday during her straight-set loss in the U.S. Open final to Samantha Stosur was ineffective insults.

For the record, I have no problem with what Serena did. She was collected, intelligible and most importantly of all – right.

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Although Williams was wrong to shout out in the midst of a point, a rule regarding the etiquette of a sport like tennis should not exist.

Players should abide by an honor code that’s held above the rulebook.

But when Serena broke an unwritten rule by letting out a deafening yelp of excitement just before Stosur made contact, the line judge should have put the rulebook in her back pocket.

Besides, Stosur had about as much chance to return that volley as the Tea Party has making a rational argument.

Instead, Williams is the latest in a long line of athletes who have overzealously held incorrect officials accountable.

I have no problem with an official blowing a call. They’re allowed – they’re human.

However, there is something detestable about a belligerent umpire who makes a bad call and wears it as a badge of honor. There is also something ugly about the arrogance of a referee who looks to start a fight, rather than suppress the situation.

It is these officials who cause retaliatory athletes to become sympathetic figures.

Suddenly, we understand why Delmon Young flailed a bat toward a minor league umpire, or why Bobby Knight was, well, Bobby Knight.

Of course, some steps could be taken to reduce, and possibly eliminate such mistakes.

We are at a time in sports, when, by all accounts, the human official could be made essentially obsolete if we so wished.

For all intents and purposes, umpires blindly determining the outcome of games could be a thing of the past if Major League Baseball would delegate calling balls and strikes to the computer-generated strike zone seen on every baseball broadcast.

But when I hear of fans groaning at the prospect of increased replay because it would lessen the “human element” of the game, I just wish they would be consistent and carry this philosophy to all aspects of their life.Instead of watching the game on their LCD TV, perhaps they can retire to the billiard room and converse over a snifter of brandy.

No, I have no doubt in my mind that more replay in sports would be a good thing. My only qualm is that the officials will still get it wrong.

And that’s where you come in, Serena.


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