Coaches talk all the time about discipline. But it is usually related to what happens on the field.
A coach will describe his upcoming opponent as a disciplined team or he will talk about his own team needing to be disciplined.
There is a difference, however, in being disciplined, and doling out discipline.
If they stay in the game long enough, most coaches will face a situation where some type of discipline, or punishment, is in order.
Knowing the kind of reaction they will get from parents and fans, coaches find themselves walking on egg shells in trying to determine the proper course of action.
Most of us can recall a time over the years when a star player ran afoul of team rules and was punished (wink, wink) by sitting out a series, a quarter or, horror of horrors, the whole first half.
Two years ago, Selinsgrove coach Dave Hess took one for the program, so to speak, when he suspended the bulk of his starters for the entire season after they were involved in a party where alcohol was served. The team finished 1-9, just two years removed from a Class AAA state title, but he made his point.
As expected, Hess took it on the chin as parents did everything they could to get the decision reversed, to no avail.
Another area coach disciplined a player and that action eventually led to his dismissal.
All of this popped into my head after an online story this week about a high school football coach in Utah, who took things to a whole other level.
Matt Labrum, the head coach at Union High School, indefinitely suspended his entire team, all 80 players, for cyber bullying, cutting classes and disrespecting teachers.
Can you imagine the Valley parents putting up with that from any of our coaches?
According to the story, Labrum was requiring the players to perform community service rather than practice, and write a report on their activities to have a chance at reinstatement.
Labrum was quoted as saying, "We felt like everything was going in a direction that we didn't want our young men going."
Labrum, who attended the school, has been the coach for two years.
It was an especially bold move for Labrum, being that he had not been a long-time coach who had earned the respect of the community.
After this, he should have all the respect in the world, even if he never wins another game.
CELEBRATION TIME: As I mentioned in this column about a month ago, the Southern Columbia football boosters will celebrate 50 years of Tigers' football at Friday night's Homecoming Game with Selinsgrove.
The boosters have welcomed back previous teams over the years and Friday's program will involve the school's 1963 squad.
Before the game, all football alumni are invited to stop at the Alumni Tent next to the home bleachers for snacks and to meet other former Tigers. The 1963 team attendees will meet there by 6:45 p.m. for a recognition ceremony.
After the 2013 Tigers run down the hill (before the coin toss), the public address announcer will invite the 1963 honorees onto the field while providing some history. There will be a moment of silence for Tigers who have passed on. One or two of the 1963 team members will participate in the coin toss, and they are all invited to watch the game from the sidelines.
n Sports editor Harold Raker covers high school football for The Daily Item. Email comments to email@example.com.