Blam­ing Bel­larmine loss on protest is wrong

The Mercury News Weekend - - OPINION -

I think Devin Fo­ley’s blam­ing a player protest for Bel­larmine’s loss to Serra is too sim­plis­tic (“Bel­larmine play­ers mis­place pri­or­i­ties,” Let­ters, Oct. 3). In my ex­pe­ri­ence, there can be­many other rea­sons, as well. The other team may be ath­let­i­cally su­pe­rior, have a bet­ter of­fen­sive and de­fen­sive game plan or sim­ply be the best team on that given Fri­day night.

Peo­ple, teenagers in­cluded, are able to mul­ti­task. I was a var­sity foot­ball coach at Los Gatos at the time of the 9/11 at­tack. We played a game four days later. The kids were still in shock, but able to stay fo­cused and play well. There are many things in the world more im­por­tant than the out­come of one high school foot­ball game. — Eric Van Pat­ten, Var­sity Foot­ball Coach, Los Gatos High School (1976-2012), San Jose

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