Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Caution! You're about to enter...

...a no spin zone!

Just kidding. This post is all about spinning...and caution.

If you've not been catching the recent emails from A Splash of Truth and reading those updates at USSWIMNSCANDAL, here's the Readers Digest version.


The latest email was sent out on May 2. Among other things, it contained this list of goals and objectives:

1. Effectively settle the numerous sexual abuse lawsuits in a timely and efficient manner.

2. Apologize to the many victims of sexual abuse and misconduct.

3. Chuck Wielgus and Pat Hogan need to be immediately removed from their positions at USA Swimming. This would save our organization one million dollars per year in salary. Swimming in the United States cannot move forward and effectively heal with these two individuals remaining in their respective positions.

4. The USA Swimming Board of Directors needs to be more accountable and more effectively oversee and actively manage the USA Swimming staff.

5. The American Swimming Coaches Association Board (if it is anything more than a "rubber stamp" board) needs to remove John Leonard as the Executive Director. If Leonard is not removed from the American Swimming Coaches Association, we are calling upon all coaches and parents to boycott ASCA and start a new coaches association that actually helps and supports club coaches. Other actions that need to be taken are as follows - 1. Don't pay for or attend ASCA sponsored clinics. 2. Don't purchase ASCA memberships. 3. And certainly don't buy any materials or services from ASCA. As an organization, USA Swimming needs to disassociate themselves with ASCA and certify and educate coaches on their own. ASCA's only good for gouging clubs and their underpaid coaches. Unfortunately, USA Swimming Club coaches do not have a coaches association that truly represents their interests.

6. We are calling on the membership to remove some of the veteran USA Swimming, LSC and USSIC Board Members that have overseen the corruption and ineptitude that has happened under their watch. Stop recycling these same individuals on and off our USA Swimming and USSIC boards year after year.

7. We are calling on the membership to demand full disclosure of the USSIC including the operation and finances of this company that is funded by our membership money.

8. We are calling on the membership to reject any efforts by the USA Swimming Executives and Board to implement a dues increase this fall. DO NOT SUPPORT ANY DUES INCREASE IN ANY WAY, SHAPE OR FORM!

While we wouldn't argue with most of these objectives, I'm tapping the brakes on number five.

In particular:

As an organization, USA Swimming needs to disassociate themselves with ASCA and certify and educate coaches on their own. ASCA's only good for gouging clubs and their underpaid coaches.

Let's have a show of hands: How many think USA Swimming can put on a better coaches' clinic than the ASCA World Clinic? Just three of you? Of you three, how many World Clinics have you attended? None? Okay, thanks for your input. That will be all...

I don't know John Leonard personally. I've heard him speak about rooting out drug cheats. His anti-doping work has helped our sport.

The ASCA World Clinic has outstanding speakers and presentations, year-in and year-out. Coaches and clubs use the ASCA Job Service to connect. Coaches that can't attend the World Clinic can still learn plenty via the World Clinic Yearbook.

I don't know that I'm prepared to drop my ASCA membership and certifications just yet. I certainly don't agree with everything they do, but since when should that be news?


The latest site update was posted on May 2. It concerns the Dagny Knutson saga. This gal has bounced from Minot, to Auburn, to Fullerton, to Gainesville. How about we leave the poor kid alone?

Is this what USSWIMNSCANDAL calls protecting athletes?


I understand the "good" these folks are trying to do for our sport. I just wish they'd tone down the "spin" a bit.

I feel that we're all being indicted here and that can't be a good thing. An overwhelming majority of the folks involved with swimming are good people with the best of intentions.

Not everything ASCA and USA Swimming does is bad, but too much spin can make it seem like it.

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