Banned Words

Natalie Maynor maynor at CS.MSSTATE.EDU
Thu Jan 6 19:00:42 UTC 2000

Ronald Kephart said:
> I think that would just get you not on the team.  The major reason
> for being redshirted is that if you transfer from one school to
> another you can't compete for your new school for one year. In my

I'm certainly not an authority on sports, but I think the major
reason for being red-shirted in many places is simply the belief
on the part of the coach that the player will be a greater asset
to the team by having another year of development -- possibly turning
into a super star instead of just a minor star.  Some players prefer
to be red-shirted if they think they wouldn't have as much playing
time as true freshmen as they would the next year.  In other words,
being red-shirted for a year can increase their overall playing time
and their possibilities of being recruited by pro scouts.

> case, I transferred to William and Mary as a cross-country runner.  I
> ran in the races my first year, but I didn't count in the scoring and
> I couldn't wear the team uniform, which I think is what the "red
> shirt" refers to.

Red-shirted football players do (at least sometimes) wear the uniform
and stay on the sidelines.  The decision to red-shirt at the beginning
of the season isn't binding.  If a red-shirted player is suddenly seen
as crucial in a game, he can be un-red-shirted on the spot, I think.
I've seen that happen, with fans debating the wisdom of it -- like was
he really so crucial at that time that it was worth giving up that
fifth year of eligibility.
   --Natalie Maynor (maynor at

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