It is one of my favorite times of year. My vita has SIU, IU and UK featured prominently ... all good basketball schools (at least SIU was). Anyway, it has been awesome enjoying March at these places.
After their win v. VCU, Coach Tom Crean of IU was interviewed by CBS. The first thing he mentioned in the interview was,
“We pray before every game, and one of the biggest things is God gives us the tools and the courage but it is our responsibility to do the work.”
Struck me as a bit odd, but certainly not out of the ordinary. In fact, I eagerly googled his comments for this post thinking there would be some debate, but found no controversy at all. It is so normal we do not even notice anymore, I think.
But, here is IU's representative, who gets paid a lot, on the biggest stage starting with "We pray before every game." Are we okay with this? Indiana University (an awesome school, might I add) is public and has 40,000 students, a fair number of which I'm guessing are not that into prayer toward this particular "God." Heck, I'm an alumnus and I'm not sure I'm totally okay with it.
From a legal perspective, I certainly do not like this. I know it would be a difficult situation to challenge, but if challenged, I would worry about the Establishment Clause implications. And, it is very hard to make a Free Exercise claim on the other side of this.
So, thoughts? Is this worth trying to tamp down?
*P.S. - And, don't even go there. No, I am not doing this because UK plays IU this week and they beat us once already this year. Crean was just the one I happened to catch (because I was watching the game as an IU fan).