FanDuel - WFBC

January 06, 2010

Texas High School Beats Opponent 170-35: In Houston, Yates High School beat Lee High School 170-35 Tuesday night, setting the state's single-game scoring record. Yates, the defending Texas Class 4A state champion and one of the top-ranked high school teams in the U.S., was up 100-12 at halftime and continued to run the full-court press the whole game, putting in second- and third-stringers. "I don't understand why Yates just kept scoring and pressing when they were up so much," said Lee coach Jacques Armant. "These are kids. It isn't good to do that to other young men." Tempers flared in the third period and sparked a bench-clearing brawl.

posted by rcade to basketball at 07:44 PM - 38 comments

Tempers flared in the third period and sparked a bench-clearing brawl.

Sounds about right.

I know we've seen a very similar story to this one which sort of polarized members, so I won't add much more than that.

posted by tahoemoj at 08:43 PM on January 06

Coaches should take their teams off the floor when they're being subjected to one of these unsportsmanlike routs. If the Lee coach had left when the brawl occurred, Yates wouldn't have been able to keep breaking records at his team's expense.

posted by rcade at 09:41 PM on January 06

That's shameful. No class at all.

posted by Hugh Janus at 10:32 PM on January 06

As in the other game last year when the coach ran the score up, it's not so much the score as it is running the full court press the whole game.

I probably would have forfeited the game at the point of the brawl.

posted by dviking at 10:45 PM on January 06

I still say it's more insulting for a team to basically stop playing because you suck. That's insulting! "You're so shitty, we're going to play the fourth quarter with our shoelaces tied together... you know, in the interest of good sportsmanship!"

I think a team that plays all game as if every point matters teaches a valuable lesson to themselves and the losing team: keep playing, even when you're losing and especially when you're winning. Training your mind and energy to not shut off when "convenient" is an important skill in sports: it's what allows rallies to occur, it's what gives you that extra push late in the game when the other team is coasting and the score is much closer.

Pour it on if you can, and once you get blown out why do you care by how much? Hell, if a coach or team were smart, they'd use blow-outs as a golden opportunity to try new drills or routines they've been wanting to test.

You put on the uniform, you go out on the field of battle, you take your freakin' lumps. Sometimes you win by a lot, sometimes you lose by a lot, sometimes it's a squeaker either way.

posted by hincandenza at 11:40 PM on January 06

You put on the uniform, you go out on the field of battle, you take your freakin' lumps.


Child please !

Field of battle?

It was a basketball game between children, not part of a war.

posted by tommytrump at 11:45 PM on January 06

I still say it's more insulting for a team to basically stop playing because you suck

Big difference between "stop playing" and calling off the full court press. The losing team was obviously at the mercy of the far superior team. From my point of view Yates had a better situation in which to try out new routines. They had practiced the press, how about working on stalling? Surely, there'll come a time when the ability to kill the clock might come in handy.

I'm guessing sportsmanship just wasn't taught at your school.

posted by dviking at 01:01 AM on January 07

Maybe, just maybe, the winning coach felt he was trying new things. He was teaching his 2nd and 3rd string how to run a full press durning a game situation (not practice) - and before anyone blasts me, no I'm not defending the guy! In addition, many coaches feel that it is the responsibilty of their offense to score and for the opposing defense to stop the score. This line of reasoning has been used by coaches of all sports at all levels; and by coaches on both ends of a blow out.

posted by FonGu at 05:26 AM on January 07

Sure, the 3rd string has to practice the full court press sometime, and yes, coaches that are prone to running up scores tend to use the "stop us" argument as a defense. However, remember that they ran the full court press the entire game, no let up once they were ahead by, oh say 60 points.
Also, keep in mind that this was a high school game, they aren't dealing with the ranking issues that colleges face. I can understand a NCAA team running up the score in order raise their chances of making the tourneys, but not a high school. Yes, I know they have National rankings for high schools, but as far as the state tournament goes, outscoring an oppenent by 135 doesn't benefit you any more than winning by 75 does. (and, I doubt it really affects the national ranking much as well)

Again, some of the main reasons high school sports exist is to teach teamwork and sportsmanship, not the best way coach the latter if you ask me.

posted by dviking at 07:50 AM on January 07

Can you imagine being down 100-12 at halftime and seeing the opposing team continue the full-court press? It seems to me that Yates ran the score up because it's going for state records and wanted to increase its rep as a nationally known team.

posted by rcade at 07:57 AM on January 07

outscoring an oppenent by 135 doesn't benefit you any more than winning by 75 does

Of course it does - next time you play, you're going to feel 60 points better about yourself, your confidence will be higher, and your standard of play is likely to follow.

My basic position on any discussion of this type is in line with hincandenza's - the glory of sport is that you win some, you lose some, and sometimes a bully with no panache will just pound away at you long after you're already beaten for no reason that you can fathom. That's a far more valuable life lesson. Although Errol Brown is a close personal friend of my girlfriend's family and I wouldn't dream of contradicting the man under normal circumstances, I feel duty bound to point out that in spite of the modern trend towards making no one feel left out - everyone is NOT a winner, baby. That's no lie.

posted by JJ at 09:14 AM on January 07

If it makes anyone feel better, when I first scanned this story, "Texas High School" made me think this was a football game. I must have Seasonal Defective Disorder. Re-reading the post, the 35 was what tipped me that way. It's an immediately recognizable football score. I just assumed 117 was as well, since I didn't feel like doing the math.

posted by yerfatma at 09:54 AM on January 07

Well I just thought it showed poor form for the Yates team to do the old "confetti in the water bucket" routine during a time-out. The "four man weave" under the basket was at least a basketball-type move.

Personally I think the Lee coach should have pulled his team when Curley did his dribbling skills exhibition and Meadowlark sank the full court hook shot in the second half.

posted by THX-1138 at 10:08 AM on January 07

I was coaching a YMCA team a few years ago when a visiting team pulled this stunt during a rout: One player got on his hands and knees and another used him as a springboard for a dunk.

We don't invite that team to tournaments any more.

posted by rcade at 10:36 AM on January 07

At least this was not against a team of blind deaf-mutes like the last one.

[/summon wfrazerjr]

posted by holden at 11:20 AM on January 07

The mention of last year's Covenant-Dallas Academy blowout is not particularly applicable here for a couple reasons.

The first is Yates has a full roster and so has the ability to practice the press any time it so chooses. Covenant did not and so could not ever work on the press except in game situations.

The second is no one paid any attention to the Dallas Academy coach admitting that Covenant actually stopped using the press three minutes into the game, then returned to a different style press later.

But I'll not go into that any further since no one (except for yerfatma) chose to acknowledge it in the original thread.

Harumph.

On edit: Hilarious! I've actually been writing this comment for a while as customers walked in and out.

posted by wfrazerjr at 11:59 AM on January 07

Oh, and here's a link that's both one man's opinion on the game and an example of why newspaper people think TV anchors are idiots.

posted by wfrazerjr at 12:01 PM on January 07

I probably would have forfeited the game at the point of the brawl.

You're a better man than me. I would have instructed my players that the next time someone on the other team pressed you, kick them square in the balls as hard as you can.

I mean there's lessons to learn in that as well. The other team could learn "hey, when you're an ass-hat that tries to take advantage of your superiority..sometimes people will resent that and resort to unexpected solutions".

Maybe that's why I'm not a coach :-)

posted by bdaddy at 12:43 PM on January 07

b daddy, I would play for you. You have a coaching style I can get on board with.

We seem to have this same debate every time an article like this pops up. My view is this;

If you have you 2nd/3rd teamers in and are running basic stuff and the other team just can't stop you, shame on them. Sometimes you just need to take a beating and their is nothing you can do about it. You learn what you can from the loss and move on. AS a coach, you can never tell your team take it easy because then they risk injuries "going easy" . As a coach, you can take your foot off the gas. Stop blitzing, run your fullback a few times, turn the full court press off.

BUT, If you are going out of your way to run up score/records/personal stats you are an ass. ie.. running the full court press, Throwing deep passes and going for 2 when up by 50, or leaving in your starters all game, then you are a poor coach.

Sometimes though, a team takes a beating no matter how much you try to let up. Yates coaches, sound like D-bags.

posted by Debo270 at 01:24 PM on January 07

If you have you 2nd/3rd teamers in and are running basic stuff and the other team just can't stop you, shame on them.

I agree, that or shame on the league you're in for not being more balanced. I guess that might be my perspective from growing up in New England. Are these wildly uncompetitive games a result of living in more wide open spaces where there aren't multiple leagues for a school to chose?

posted by yerfatma at 01:29 PM on January 07

wfrazerjr, I'm not sure I follow what you mean about newspaper writers and TV anchors, but I thought the article pretty much encapsulated my view:

...the best lesson he can send to his players is that it says more about a young man to win by 50 when you're 135 points better...

I've never coached a team sport, but I also liked his idea of stopping the full court press and requiring three passes before any shot.

posted by dusted at 01:59 PM on January 07

Well, I know that in other sports, like baseball, for example, when I played I had a teammate who bunted for a hit when we were up by 9 or 10 runs and then stole second. The rest of us, his teammates, just told him get ready to have them throw at your head for being a dumbass next time up and that he had it coming. I think hockey probably has dangerous consequences for the running up the score/stat-padding, or violating unwritten rules, but is a bench clearing brawl the equivalent for basketball then? Hard foul?

posted by chris2sy at 02:16 PM on January 07

wfrazerjr, I'm not sure I follow what you mean about newspaper writers and TV anchors

I meant it appears the author may have picked up English as a fourth or fifth language, something common among TV talking heads. How does any news organization allow something that full of misspellings, punctuation and capitalization errors to be posted on its web site?

posted by wfrazerjr at 02:35 PM on January 07

I think hockey probably has dangerous consequences for the running up the score/stat-padding, or violating unwritten rules, but is a bench clearing brawl the equivalent for basketball then? Hard foul?

Not a damn thing happened in the Canada-Latvia hockey game last week, despite Canada winning 16-0. That also involved a bunch of teenagers.

posted by grum@work at 02:58 PM on January 07

bdaddy:

You're a better man than me. I would have instructed my players that the next time someone on the other team pressed you, kick them square in the balls as hard as you can.

I mean there's lessons to learn in that as well. The other team could learn "hey, when you're an ass-hat that tries to take advantage of your superiority..sometimes people will resent that and resort to unexpected solutions".

And your team could learn, "Hey, when you commit assault...sometimes you get a ride in a police car." And you, the coach, could learn, "Hey, when you instruct your players to commit assault...sometimes you get fired and get a ride in a police car." Seriously, do you really believe that your "lesson" would have the effect you want? It's all well and good to fantasize on the interwebs about teaching an asshat a lesson, and how the result is a chastened asshat and the admiration of the masses, but it's a bit disconnected from reality.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 03:05 PM on January 07

OK, wfrazerjr, got it. I did notice a few "are you kidding me?" grammatical errors, but I guess I read too many forums to even notice anymore.

posted by dusted at 04:00 PM on January 07

Seriously, do you really believe that your "lesson" would have the effect you want?

No, my "lesson" was nothing more than a somewhat-snarky comment to the other posters who saw this as no big deal and thought the players on the losing team could learn "life lessons" by losing by 100 points from this arrogant coach. I was simply pointing out, that if they wanted to apply that same logic to my "foot-in-the-nuts" comments, they could also come up with some "life lessons" as well, however tongue-in-cheek they may be.

posted by bdaddy at 05:52 PM on January 07

Are these wildly uncompetitive games a result of living in more wide open spaces where there aren't multiple leagues for a school to chose?

It's high school basketball, and both teams are in the same district, Yates is a basketball powerhouse, Lee is not, at least not this year.

In reading more about Yates, and their coach, it's pretty obvious that he's doing everything he can to gain national recognition for his team. No real problem with that, I just question whether winning 170 to 35 really gets you more notice than winning 120 to 35.

Grum was that hockey game in any sort of tournament? Sometimes in those events seeding is based on goal differential, so running up a score could at least have a benefit. When I coached baseball, I always hated the preliminary rounds because you knew that your differential on runs scored/allowed was going to come into play, sometimes it even made the difference on advancement to the next round. Never saw anything on a 170-35 scale, but did see a few 20 point margins in games that I know the coach would have normally called off the dogs.

posted by dviking at 06:03 PM on January 07

It's high school basketball, and both teams are in the same district, Yates is a basketball powerhouse, Lee is not, at least not this year.

Sure, but around here schools are slotted into a division like A, B, C or D based on school size (or something) and then play similar schools in the area. Is that not possible there? I can't imagine 170-35 is just a result of a bad freshman class this year.

posted by yerfatma at 06:17 PM on January 07

Grum was that hockey game in any sort of tournament?

Not that Grum needs me to answer for him (far from it), but yes, it was in the 2010 IIHF World U20 Championship.

posted by tommytrump at 06:28 PM on January 07

dviking: In reading more about Yates, and their coach, it's pretty obvious that he's doing everything he can to gain national recognition for his team. No real problem with that, I just question whether winning 170 to 35 really gets you more notice than winning 120 to 35.
I think we know the answer to that, by the existence of this post! :)

Look, I've always been of the mindset that you never stop playing. You don't stop playing when you're down a bunch, or when you're up a bunch. The linked article even said:

Last season, the Lions went 34-1 on the way to winning the Class 4A state championship. The one loss was a 78-76 decision to Elsik in the Houston Independent School District Tournament. That night, Wise said he let his kids down by telling them to put on the brakes.
When people slow up and start overthinking the game by taking it too easy, they get sloppy, they get injured, or they just plain lose.

I've mentioned it before but the 116-win 2001 Seattle Mariners had one especially glaring loss: a 15-14 extra inning defeat where they lead the Indians by 12 runs going into the top of the 7th. They probably said "We'll let up" and sure enough, they lost the game when they lost their focus. That loss meant they only tied for the wins record, and that same Cleveland team pushed them around in the divisional series that October, no doubt bolstered by their amazing come from behind victory.

In this game, the third stringers for Yates were in at that point, people who almost never get much playing time- so arguably their talent should be no better than the first-stringers of the losing team- and the opposing team still couldn't stop them?!?! Sounds like the other team just really, really, really sucked. Or were horribly coached, seeing as their coach is more interested in giving lessons of fake sportsmanship than in teaching how to defend against the full-court press. There was a SpoFi or MeFi article this summer about an immigrant engineer who coached his daughter's basketball team to lopsided victories by focusing on a non-stop, full-court press.

Besides, this kind of blowout is likely a terribly imbalanced league; if they're winning by this much, they shouldn't be in class 4A. When you have that one pituitary case in little league who's 6 inches taller than the other kids at age 9, and beating the crap out of the ball, they move him up a league. When you have a team so good- and presumably, so well coached- that they could outscore another team by 135 points, then they shouldn't be in that league. But that's not their fault, so why should the players or the coach ever let up on the gas? Sounds like they did that last year so feelings weren't hurt, and ended up losing their only game that year by just 2 points.

posted by hincandenza at 08:39 PM on January 07

When people slow up and start overthinking the game by taking it too easy, they get sloppy, they get injured, or they just plain lose.

A comment to the story said they were down by 8 or 9 in that earlier game and it was the Houston ISD tournament. Who puts on the brakes in that circumstance?

posted by rcade at 09:01 PM on January 07

Couple of points: First, high school class ranking has nothing to do with ability, it's about how many students you have. So, Yates is a 4A school regardless of whether they win the state title 5 years in a row. Quite different than moving a little league player up or down.

When people slow up and start overthinking the game by taking it too easy, they get sloppy, they get injured, or they just plain lose.

I think you're arguing a point that no one else is debating. As I said before, big difference between going easy and continuing the full court press the entire game. Think about that for a second. Stopping the press would eat up more game time as the other team would be allowed to bring the ball down the court and set up a play. That alone drops the 170 down a significant amount. Nobody gets hurt, though I don't think for a second that injury prevention was on the Yates coach's mind. Keep in mind that I never said that Yates should have played at 80%, or allowed the other team to score, just call off the press. The press is what allowed them to run the score up to 170.

Looking at Yates' record, they have multiple 100 games, and multiple blow outs (only one by 135 points) so I think their 3rd stringers see plenty of action.

posted by dviking at 09:54 PM on January 07

I'm not aware if rules are the same across sports, but here schools are ranked based upon size but can move up a division if they have repeated success. One example is a school with a swim team that wins the league title two years in a row will then move up to the next division, regardless of size.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 10:13 PM on January 07

In Texas a school can request to move up, but I don't see Yates wanting to do that. They're actually on the low end of the 4A enrollment, ironically, the team they slaughtered is on the high end of 4A enrollment.

Turns out that Lee High School has a significantly Hispanic student population...not sure if that's relevant to their basketball success or not.

posted by dviking at 01:09 AM on January 08

CLASS with a capital A.. I think the Yates coach will discover the error of his ways in the next week or so. Anyone that recognizes him will look at him with shame, deservedly so...

posted by mitchigan at 09:25 AM on January 08

I don't know. When I was playing youth and high school sports the emphasis was always on sportsmanship, team spirit, developing your skills, and good conduct. It really was about not mattering if you won or lost but how you played the game.

I don't know when it became fashionable or ok to inflict such a lopsided beatdown on an opponent in the name of competition, or why its acceptable as an object lesson to the losing team. What exactly is that valuable lesson that the players from Lee was supposed to learn? That there are real assholes in the sports world, even at the high school level?

This is the lesson that should be taught.

posted by irunfromclones at 02:02 PM on January 08

...around here schools are slotted into a division like A, B, C or D based on school size...

Fatty, FYI in NH the classes are L (large), I (intermediate), M (medium), and S (small). It's based on enrollment, but schools may petition to be in a different class. The one thing that precludes a blowout in NH is the lack of a shot clock. Any coach with some sense of decency would have his team sitting on the ball once his lead was large enough. Even with a shot clock, a coach should have his players running the clock down close to the end before shooting. I don't know the Texas rule, but here they play 8 minute quarters. To score 170 in 32 minutes of playing time would mean the other team could be cooperating in its own demise by trying to run and shoot without setting up an offense.

posted by Howard_T at 05:30 PM on January 08

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