Letter to the Editor | UI football team deserves respect

Letter to the Editor | UI football team deserves respect

Although not surprised, I was absolutely embarrassed and ashamed of all the booing by the University of Illinois "fan" base as our football team went into the locker room at halftime of the Sept. 1 game.

If that is the kind of "support" you're bringing to the games, let me make a suggestion: Stay home and boo at your television. Who taught you to behave that way?

My parents and grandparents taught me what sportsmanship meant and how to conduct oneself at sporting events.

My coaches, from coach Smith and coach Williams in Little League up to coaches Freehill, Rogers and Hembrough in junior high and high school, taught respect. Respect is the first aspect of true sportsmanship.

Shame on you "fans" that feel the need to vent your personal frustrations on a group of young men and coaches that work diligently every day to become a better team.

I hope you felt some shame or regret when, after booing "your team," you were cheering for the same team that you had deemed worthy of your disdain just moments before.

I'll agree — the first half was hard to watch. But it was the first game of the season. The team regrouped at halftime, and both the offense and defense looked much sharper in the second half.

The Fighting Illini football team came back and won the first game, and it was awesome to watch. That's called #WarriorSpirit as each player reached within themselves to focus and win the game as a team.

JAMES BEAN

Urbana