South Carolina parents will be banned from cheering children on from the sidelines who play in one of the state’s soccer league.
The South Carolina Youth Soccer Association announced it was implementing “Silent September” for all games statewide because of “continuing problems” and issues with “inappropriate behavior” on the parents and spectators touchline, according to a letter issued for the fall schedule.
The behavior, the letter states, has an impact on the youth and on the association’s overall referee retention.
“All parents and visitors shall be silent during the game,” the letter stated. “No cheering, no jeering; just enjoy your player and the game that they love.”
When spectators violate the rule, a referee will ask the coach to counsel the person. During a second violation a referee will tell the coach to counsel the spectator to remain silent. The third violation will get the parent or spectator to kicked out of the park, the letter said. If the spectator doesn’t leave, then the coach will be “sent off.”
Jimmy George, director of Coaching for the Clemson Anderson Soccer Alliance, told The Greenville News that the the need to implement the rule was “kind of embarrassing for our sport.”
“I've played this game since I was 6,” George said. “I'm getting ready to turn 40. Where has our sport gone? Where has our society gone?”
Once “Silent September” comes to an end, the association plans to have periodic “Silent Saturdays/Sundays” as a reminder.
Cynthia Roldán: @CynthiaRoldan