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Klein should reinstate Sanford

By Bryan Rosenbaum
Arizona Daily Wildcat,
April 20, 2000
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Cathy Klein, the new women's soccer coach, wants to make her mark on the program by adding discipline to it.

Discipline is important, I guess, but judging by the team's 32-68-6 record in its six-year existence, so is its ability - rather its inability - to score goals and win games.

Arizona has scored a grand total of 145 goals, good for 1.37 per game, in its history.

In comparison, opponents have put 258 past the Wildcats, which makes out to 2.44 per game.

Chrissy Sanford set a record for most goals in a season (11) and is third on the school's all-time career goal-scoring list, and 1999 was her first season at Arizona.

Last month, Sanford was kicked off the team by Klein for violating the three-strikes-and-you're-out policy. Sanford's three strikes were not for robbing Circle K, selling textbooks she got for free from the athletic department, or assaulting somebody.

Instead, she was 30 seconds late to practice one day, and the day after spring break, she was forced to miss two practices in one day because she had to bail her boyfriend out of jail in Mexico.

In an era where athletes are getting away with murder - literally - it's refreshing to see a coach who's willing to stand up and lay down the law. But at the same time, Klein's hard stance is absolutely ridiculous, and in this case, she has gone too far.

Here is a player who was the leader of the team and gave everything she had every day. She understood the new coach's rules - after showing up to practice late to record her first strike, she moved into the dorms so it wouldn't happen again - and seemed to enjoy Klein's new regime, which brought a well-needed change to the UA soccer program.

That is, until the coach decided to kick her off the team and take away her scholarship because she couldn't leave her boyfriend to rot in a Mexican prison after getting in a fight.

Coach Klein - haven't you ever heard stories about Mexican prisons?

From this situation, she has shown right away that she has no sensitivity for her players.

Sanford hasn't given up, and will try to walk-on before the start of the season next fall.

As the only Wildcat who can consistently put the ball in the back of the net, how Klein can continue to keep her off the team is anybody's guess.

But considering she kicked her best player off the team for a minor offense in the blink of an eye, there isn't anybody out there who knows what Klein will do next.

Bryan Rosenbaum is a junior majoring in journalism and can be reached at sports@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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