Monday, April 13, 2009

This isn't funny or amusing

In fact, it's a little bit disgusting.

When I was watching the championship game last Tuesday--or rather the pre-game--I thought I heard something about Geno Auriemma and Augusta National. But I was doing other things, I didn't hear the exact context, and when I googled seeking further information, I couldn't find anything.
But a re-googling brought up this article about Auriemma's friendship with golfer Fred Couples. Couples promised his friend a weekend of golf anywhere he wanted if UConn won the championship this year. Auriemma's choice: Augusta National.
People accuse me of "reverse discrimination" (no such thing by the way) and not believing in the better candidate getting the job (you know, the myth of meritocracy) when I start to go off about men coaching women's teams. And moments like these just affirm all my objections.
So here's a guy who coaches women's sports; who is regarded as one of the best coaches in all of women's basketball--even all of basketball; someone who has certainly helped bring greater attention to the women's game and produced or nurtured great players who themselves bring greater attention to the game. And he wants to play on a golf course infamous for its discriminatory ways. A club that still has no female members and only lets women play as guests of members.
You are a coach of a team that certainly has a place in the history of women's sports, and you are going to a place denies women access to sport. My usual flippant response here is "lovely."
But this is just so much more serious and irritating and frustrating.
What's worse is that Auriemma thought he was being funny when he said in response to who he plans on taking with him (Couples said he could pick his partner):
"I'm confident none of these guys [UConn players] will be my partner,” Auriemma said with a smile. “Caroline (Doty, UConn freshman) is really good. … I don't think they have ladies' tees at Augusta.”


I'm sure if Couples can swing an invite for Auriemma, the coach will fit in just fine down there.

*Note all the gender confusion here: are they guys or are they ladies?


Diane said...

I think it's more than a little disgusting; it's a shameless display of bigotry.

anonymous said...

I think some wrath should be directed at Tiger Woods, too. He's as multi-cultural a person as you can get, and he's rarely said a word about Augusta. Wouldn't want to upset his sponsors, I guess.

Diane said...

And what he did say was worse than saying nothing. He said that allowing women to play will "happen in its own time."