01/27/14 by Rennie Detore
Is sportsmanship officially dead?
If you paid attention to the post NFC Championship Game rant by Richard Sherman, the flamboyant, talented cornerback for the Seattle Seahawks, you might be inclined to answer that question affirmatively.
Sherman is never short on confidence, and after the Seahawks vanquished the San Francisco 49ers in the title game en route to the Super Bowl, he made it a point to put the spotlight squarely on his competent shoulders.
He effectively put down 49ers receiver Michael Crabtree and downplay the team effort turned in by his Seattle teammates. Sherman found himself being called everything from a glory hound to a thug, but also received his fair share of supporters, who had little issue with what he said or how he said it.
Those who showered Sherman with negativity point to his lack of respect for his NFL union brothers and everyone else who shares the same uniform as him. That opinion certainly holds plenty of water given that Sherman, only a few days after his outburst, apologized for taking the attention away from his team's accomplishments.
Noticeable missing from that apology was his verbiage and venom toward Crabtree.
Let the sportsmanship debate begin.
The Sherman rant rubbed plenty of people the wrong way, and the reasoning is valid. He took away a tremendous team effort and decided to "go into business for himself" and deliver a post game rant that seemed more like a professional wrestling promo.
For that, Sherman was the epitome of stupidity. His showmanship should stay on the field, and translate into continuing to make big plays for years to come. When it comes to piping in on how great he is or ripping Crabtree up and and down, Sherman should save that for the locker room or Twitter, not a few seconds after his team earned a trip to the biggest game within his profession.
Sherman showed a lack of sportsmanship by attacking Crabtree at that moment and making a monumental accomplishment solely about him.
What people can't hold against Sherman is his charisma or gamesmanship as a football player. His excitement and bravado is what makes him great. The measure of a true professional are actions speaking louder than words.
Think about players like Barry Sanders, Larry Fitzgerald and Joe Montana: they never said much, and truthfully never had to; their play was all they needed to rely on.
Sherman certainly proves that he's a tremendous athlete and arguably the best at his position. Now, if he'll only shut up and let his play speak volumes in comparison to his voice.
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