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Sports Heroes – Who Can Your Kids Look Up To?

On the first night of the NFL draft, my thoughts have drifted again to role models.  So many different sports figures end up being role models to kids, whether or not it’s a good thing.  I’ll throw out a few thoughts and then I’d like your input on good sports role models you see.The Good and The Bad With Sports Celebrities

First, this week has drawn some good and bad attention on the NFL.  Ben Rothlisberger is definitely in the bad boy category, having taken responsibility for behavior unbecoming of an NFL player.  He hasn’t been legally charged with anything, but has apparently owned up to being inappropriate with a young woman in a bar.  Big star with Super Bowls, bad example of regular everyday behaviors.

On the flipside, I need to crow a little about one of my state’s sports heroes – Ndomakong Suh.  He’s been picked second overall in the NFL draft tonight.  Last week before being paid a dime from the NFL, he pledged a massive gift to the University of Nebraska’s strength training program and the scholarship foundation for the college of engineering.  Giving back before he’s been given anything.  Of course, he hasn’t lived the fast-paced life of an NFL player and he hasn’t yet matured into an older, wiser man yet.  But so far, Suh seems to be an athlete on the right track.

Of course, there’s also Tiger Woods and all his personal indiscretions mixed with professional success.  But at the same time, Phil Mickelson’s touching story with his wife, mom and Master’s win is something to really savor.  And here’s a two-fer: Michael Vick falls from grace with the dog fighting scandal, yet after his time in jail, he has presented himself as repentant by spending considerable time speaking out against dog fighting to youth as described on the Humane Society’s website.

Any Hope For Sports Heroes As Role Models For Kids?

Are we putting too much faith in human beings dealing with life in the public eye?  Or can we still put some faith in sports figures who are living the right way? How well do we let our kids get to know their sports heroes?

Creative Commons License photo credit: ilovememphis

Sports Heroes – Who Can Your Kids Look Up To?

Erika Krull, MS, LMHP

Erika Krull, MS, LMHP is a practicing licensed mental health counselor in Nebraska.

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APA Reference
Krull, E. (2010). Sports Heroes – Who Can Your Kids Look Up To?. Psych Central. Retrieved on May 25, 2020, from


Last updated: 22 Apr 2010
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