What member schools are doing...

Sportsmanship Stories

The goal of sports and competition is too often mistaken with winning. Participants get wrapped up in coming out on top and the good that comes out of competition gets lost in the shuffle. Key West High hosted a swim meet last week that glorified sportsmanship and comradery instead of the score. Swimmers for both teams shared everything from singing the National Anthem together at the start of the meet, to a post meet BBQ. Cheers from fans and teammates were for every swimmer in the pool, and friendships were formed between competing schools. Everyone appreciates seeing a sporting event where sportsmanship is valued more than winning. A letter written from Doral Preparatory coach Cathy Silveira to Key West coach Lori Bosco shows that appreciation.

To read full description of meet please view Letter.

In a football game between North Bay Haven and Munroe on September 28, 2012, exceptional sportsmanship was detailed in a blog by a Munroe (the winning team) mother about a North Bay Haven player. The blog can be read at:

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The varsity girls soccer team at Taylor High School illustrated sportsmanship when they loaned 6 pairs of shin guards to their opponent from the Florida School for the Deaf. The team from the Florida School for the Deaf showed up with only 5 pairs of legal shin guards. Instead of cancelling the game, the soccer team from Taylor High School volunteered to give some of its equipment to the opposing team. Because of this they had to trade shin guards with each other at every substitution. This act of sportsmanship shows that Taylor High went over the top in accommodating the visitors so that the game could be played.  

Congratulations to Dr. Phillips High School Swimming and Diving coach, Apryle Nickson, on being named the Special Olympics National Coach of the Year! Coach Nickson was selected from over 90,000 coaches around the country for this honor and anyone that understands the magnitude of the work she does for Special Olympics knows this award is most deserved! Coach Nickson not only was an integral part of the coaching staff of the US Special Olympics team that competed in Greece but she also leads our own DP athletes in hundreds of hours of volunteer work for the organization every season. A tremendous honor for a truly phenomenal coach!
Dr. Phillips varsity football team assisted the Starlight Children's Foundation in their annual Boo Bash. The Boo Bash is an annual Halloween celebration that helps seriously ill children and families cope with their pain, fear and isolation. The athletes had a great time playing games, socializing, trick or treating and more with the families and children. The team gained a much greater appreciation and perspective from this event and they will continue to make it one of their yearly community service activities. 

Tenoroc High School is in its fourth year of implementing the ROC STAR Sportsmanship Award program. ROC stands for Recognizing Our Commitment to Sportsmanship and STAR stands for Stop, Think, Act, Replay. Each Monday throughout the 3 sports seasons, each head coach may nominate one athlete (JV and Varsity) who demonstrated exceptional sportsmanship during the previous week. One male and one female student-athlete are chosen by the administration from all of the nominations that are submitted by the coaches. The chosen recipients have a chance to read what was written about them by their coach.  They also receive a certificate, a wrist band, and have their picture taken. Their pictures are then placed on a bulletin board along with a brief summary of their display of sportsmanship outside the athletic director’s office.  


Del Oro High School's track team has implemented 'Jack's Heat' for student Jack Burleson, who is an 18 year old with OFD (Oral Facial Digital) Syndrome. The syndrome causes deformities in the mouth, ear, and face and causes vision problems making it very hard to read. Jack's Heat was started in 2010, Jack's sophomore year, so that he had the ability to compete in a race. For a race that started with Jack as the only participant it has evolved to where players from opposing schools are fighting for spots in this particular heat. This is a great story and the sportsmanship shown by track runners from other schools is exemplary. To view the whole story please visit The FHSAA has made adaptive rules for Track & Field to allow special events like this.

South Fork High School has developed a sportsmanship brochure (CLICK HERE) that all coaches will distribute at their parent meetings. Additionally, South Fork will post sportsmanship signs at all athletic venues as well as spectator expectation banners in its gymnasium. Each team will recognize a specific sportsmanship winner at their end of season banquet, with a gift from the athletic department.  At the end of the school year, we will ask all individual team winners to submit a sportsmanship essay, which our administrative team will read over and select a Fall, Winter, Spring and Overall sportsmanship award winner for the year.  Our overall winner will have their name added to our inaugural Sportsmanship banner which will be hung in our Gymnasium.  Seasonal winners will also have their pictures on display in a trophy case for all to see throughout the school year.  

Palmer Trinity School has created a culture of sportsmanship with its new banners that emphasize the importance of sportsmanship before, during, and after games.  The school has also provided scripts of proactive sportsmanship for both the public-address announcers and the captains of both teams to be used prior to the introduction of players. These additions have been very well received by the community and as a result, parents and fans are treating officials, athletes, and coaches with more respect. Games are also running a lot more fluently with the absence of poor sportsmanship. To read more about these changes please visit

More than 90 student athletes from both Jupiter High School and Jupiter Christian High School recently came together for "Rivals Unite" to make a difference for an elderly Jupiter resident, Minnie Carter. The students used their time off from school on President's Day to paint, mulch, clean up the yard, trim shrubs and trees, and build a fence around the Carter residence. Afterwards, Carter graciously expressed her gratitude, remarking that she could not thank everyone enough for all they did. The students were rewarded with pizza and ice cream upon completion, as well as a friendly game of dodge-ball where a coveted trophy was at stake. Students have shown their intentions for making this an annual event by already starting to plan for next year. To view photos and read more about this event please visit

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University High School (Orlando) is promoting a school-wide initiative designed to recognize student-athletes after each and every athletic contest. “Promoting Athletes With Sportsmanship” (P.A.W.S.) is the acronym that describes good sportsmanship viewed by the National Federation of State High School Associations for commitment to fair play, ethical behavior and integrity. University High School will be implementing P.A.W.S. with all its athletic teams in every athletic contest. At the conclusion, University’s team captain(s) will choose a player from the opposing team who exemplified outstanding good character and or sportsmanship throughout that contest and present him/her with a P.A.W.S. certificate and/or medallion. If you have any questions regarding P.A.W.S, please contact Athletic Director Mike Oldakowski at (407) 482-8706 or michael [dot] oldakowski [at] ocps [dot] net.

Citrus Springs Middle School promotes sportsmanship at home contests by having its coaches and players select a player from the opposing team that demonstrates sportsmanship through playing hard, strong and fair.  They receive a t-shirt with the FHSAA sportsmanship slogan on it.  They also used the idea of the sportsmanship pledge giving student free admission to games if they have the pledge memorized.  The staff shares its way of promoting good sportsmanship with the other athletic directors and coaches in the area at all meetings and work together to promote all the schools. Winning the FHSAA/Fred E. Rozelle Sportsmanship Award for best overall middle school program has not only been great for Citrus Springs Middle, but also for the other middle schools trying to improve where they are.

St. Andrew's School (Boca Raton) gives lollipops to parents and vocal fans and says, "If you think you are going to say something unsportsmanlike, put the lollipop in your mouth." The banner at the gym entrance and all coaching staff shirts have the slogan "Take Ownership of Sportsmanship."

Mount Dora High School gives student-athletes free admission to school athletic events if they can show their sportsmanship pledge cards at the door and recite the pledge from memory! It also does not allow anyone (students, parents, etc.) to stand around concessions, open areas, etc. during the games. Members of the crowd must find a seat if they are going to be at the game. This is enforced by our school resource officers and game security personnel, including administrators. This accomplishes a few things: a) it puts everyone in a position to be facing the field/court, subconsciously meaning they "get into" the game instead or other things, b) people who are not there to watch the gme but to do unacceptable activities, (pass drugs, plot activities, fights, etc.) are forced to stay seated and not moving around, c) little children are better supervised when they have to sit (most of the time with their own parents), d) reduces the risk of problems and officers and administrators have better crowd control. We have found that our adult crowds are happier and coming back because they feel safe and they can watch the game without the distractions of the past. More and more schools in our county are doing this as it has been very successful. We also stop collecting admission at the end of the 3rd quarter of our games, but we also close the game and do not allow anyone in free during the remainder of the games. This keeps the riff-raff and freebies away and reduces "after game" problems. We also do not allow anyone to leave the game at any time and return unless they pay admission AGAIN to enter.

The Pine School (Stuart) hung a sportsmanship banner in its gym. Also, all teams give an end of season award for sportsmanship. It is the last award each coach gives, therefore given more status than MVP trophies, etc.

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