Thursday, August 18, 2011
The Bobblehead Situation
So I thought I'd be able to avoid discussing this issue in depth, but things that have been around today have just made me want to write about it. For those that have been living in a cave the last 24ish hours, last night after Sporting KC's first goal by Graham Zusi, two "fans" in the south stand threw the heads from the Omar Bravo bobble head towards the field. One of the heads hit goalkeeper, Jimmy Nielsen right below his eye. The injury stopped play for about 4 minutes as Nielsen received emergency stitches in his cheek. The team used the high tech cameras to help find the throwers and had the two of them arrested while the other two in their party were removed from the stadium.
One of those two, the one that didn't hit Nielsen has been released, Robert Hauver a 21 year old was ticketed with disorderly conduct and was released today. Hauver played football at Lansing High School and walked on at Kansas State, but is no longer on the team. The one who hit Nielsen is still being held (and his name has not been released), and according to the team will be charged with felony aggravated battery. Certainly a very serious situation for both of the young men involved. But one of them earned themselves no fans with his reaction to fans as he was being escorted out.
On the team's Facebook page today, a friend of the two apparently posted saying that the two "didn't mean" to hit Nielsen and are in fact season ticket holders. This is what bothers me the most about the situation. Even when drunk, what makes someone think throwing a hard object towards anyone is a good idea? And they didn't mean it? You throw an object in a stadium full of people, even if it's towards the field and you run the risk of hitting someone, stupidity at it's finest. The two have now lost their season tickets and are banned for life from LIVESTRONG Sporting Park, certainly a stiff punishment for the offenders. But I do kind of like Thad's idea of banning them from all sports stadiums/arenas as well. At least for a short term, banning people from multiple stadiums for a situation like this would send a message.
These two seem likely that they'll have a bit of an example made of them. This situation though does point to how well the system at the stadium works, as with all the stadium cameras, the throwers were arrested before half time of the game.