ERIC REVENO is almost ready to start the interview.
First he had to call on the members of the National Basketball Coaches Association to vote consciously, an impartial group that organizes educational voting for students and other young voters. Later in the afternoon, the main bus of the men’s basketball club Georgia Tek will meet with the committee that will register the school athletes for Tuesday’s presidential elections.
That morning, Mr. Reuveno also spoke to St. Croix assistant Joe Kennedy about how NABC had approached voter registration and voter education, and what the next steps would be.
Somebody’s gonna tell me to take a break, Reveno. You’ll laugh in December when I twitter about the vote.
Reveno, Yellow Jackets’ right-handed head coach, Josh Pastner, is responsible for team planning and international recruitment management, among other things. Before joining Georgia Tech in 2016, Reuveno was head coach in Portland for ten years. He participated in four post-season events and won the WCC Coach of the Year award in 2009.
But if his name sounds familiar, it’s probably because he has become the leading voice for tuning and training athletes in college.
The Bundeswahltag, on the 3rd. November, should be a mandatory day off from the NCAA. We need to empower, train and guide our athletes so that they can participate in the change. We have to act. Each party has a symbolism, and it is strong. GeorgiaTech GeorgiaTechTAthletics ACCMBB NCAA CabreraAngel
– Eric Reuveno (@CoachReveno) 3. June 2020.
In early June Reveno launched the #AllVoteNoPlay campaign and challenged the NCAA to 3rd place. November, election day, which is proclaimed rest day for all sports events. On the second. In June, he first tweeted about the idea and then launched a petition, which was distributed on social networks by State Golden Warriors coach Steve Kerr and others. All the way to four. In June, the nine Georgia Tech technical teams expected to be present on election day declared that they would not hold any mandatory events. Other university teams, programmes and conferences soon joined them.
On the 12th. NCAA Chairman Mark Emmert and the NCAA Board of Directors have recommended that election day should be a day off for all sports teams. In September, the NCAA announced that training sessions and races in the November Bundeswahltag will be banned for Division I athletes in 2020 and beyond.
Coach Reuveno, which he did on a whim while visiting various groups in the country, Pastner said it was incredible.
Reuveno continues to tweet, organise and encourage students to vote and shows no interest in slowing down after election day.
Fault! The file name is not specified. Technical Assistant Eric Reuveno asked the team to take a day off to stimulate the mood – and it went well. Rijke von Bieberstein/Sport icon
If you had asked me before June what my hobbies were, I wouldn’t have known anything then, Reuveno said. I didn’t have a hobby. I’d say it’s become my hobby now. This is a fundamental social responsibility. It wasn’t a change for me. I haven’t changed my perspective or my relationship.
For me it was a revelation that makes perfect sense. That’s why I was training. I get it, I get it, I get it: Why don’t the trainers do it?
REVENO’s son Andrew, 15 years old, was the first to ask a question his father had asked himself several times since June.
Has anyone ever thought of that?
There’s a lot of reflection, even guilt, on how Eric Reveno told you how he got here. He played in the middle at Stanford, where he led twice and helped the Cardinal reach the first NCAA tournament in 47 years. After a four-year professional career in Japan, he returned to Stanford where he earned his MBA before starting a coaching career there in 1997.
Since then, Reuveno has been training with great attention to every detail on and off the course. That’s what he thought.
He remembers no conversation about the voting of athletes during his playing or coaching career at Stanford. When he lived in Japan, he lived near the American Embassy and went there to pay his taxes, but not to vote. Reuveno had no objection to the extrajudicial training. He was happy with what the players learned about nutrition, sleep and mental health. During their stay in Portland, the Reveno players were actively involved in the community service.
Going to the children’s hospital is very important, feeding the homeless is important, but we didn’t do anything before the elections or the vote, said Reuveno. I don’t remember asking him: Are you registered? I thought other people would take care of it. Most Americans take this for granted. We love him on the fourth. In July for a barbecue we would like to thank our soldiers for their service, because it is deserved, but we are not aware of our responsibility to go to the elections.
TCU head coach Jamie Dixon, chairman of NABC, said he never really understood the logistical challenges his players face when voting – from finding time between basketball and homework to getting the polls. Until 2020, Reuveno had no idea whether Georgia Tek’s players had voted or not.
It wasn’t a trick, Mr. Pustner said. It was more like a flag.
Most coaches did.
Joe Kennedy’s father, Pat, coached teams in Florida, DePaul and other places and loved politics. Joe remembers that Pat observed an accidental debate in the Senate about C-SPAN. They talked about votes and candidates in each election cycle, but for Pat’s teams, voting was not part of the life skills program.
I’ll vote on election day. I love the opportunity to participate in democracy. I’m afraid Emmett isn’t involved in the story! @karleebkennedy @allintovote
I ask @maxyginz1 @CoachFreemanJ @Coach_Dooz to share my projects. #VotingSquad #allintovote #allvotenoplay pic.twitter.com/XjNoU3ivI2
– Joe Kennedy (@TheReal_CoachK) 13. October 2020.
Even when Joe (who has nothing to do with the Kennedy political family) went to college as a trainer after several years in the White House during Barack Obama’s presidency, voting was not a priority.
Those discussions took place in 2018 or 2016 or 2012, but Kennedy said there was a little more controversy between athletics and thinking about voting in elections. This process has been completely different. Coaches feel empowered to talk about things they haven’t felt, maybe before they have to.
This fence and this wall have just completely collapsed in the last two months.
When Boise’s assistant president Mike Burns saw his friend Reuveno leading the voting process for the players, he remembered his first coaching job at Highline Community College in Des Moines, Washington. This was in the summer of 1992, shortly after the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles and other cities. Burns talked to Highline actors about police violence, systemic racism and the importance of the upcoming presidential elections.
Twenty-eight years later, Burns said the same thing. But he noticed something else.
What happened that summer was a bucket of water on all our faces, Burns said. It’s kept us busy. It was real, really unique, and the pastor was very influential in all of this. What’s cool is that now that the coaches and students of the sport are involved, we stay involved.
The first one. In June, coaches and players from the Georgia Institute of Technology met by video interview, as did teams from universities across the country. A week earlier, George Floyd had died in police custody in Minneapolis. Demonstrations and robberies have started in many large cities.
The CNN center in downtown Atlanta, three miles from the Renault house, was destroyed. When the call started, Reuveno heard police helicopters flying over him.
The coaches and players walked around in the virtual space and each shared their feelings. When it was Reveno’s turn, he expressed his shame and disgust. Why hasn’t there been any progress since Rodney King?
He suffocated when he told the group: I promise I’ll do everything in my power to make it better.
But how? Malachi Rice, head of the Indianapolis Guard, gave the answer.
I was very hypocritical to say that people wanted to protest, and when it was time to vote, not to vote, Rice said. I thought we should act on both sides if people want to demonstrate. The mood was something that was really going to change, something that was achievable for everyone, something to which everyone was entitled.
Fault! The file name is not specified. I have taken a somewhat hypocritical position that people want to protest, and then when it is time to vote instead of voting, said Malachi Rice, the leader of the rankings. I thought we should act on both sides if people want to demonstrate. Thanks to Georgia Tech.
At the age of 21, Rice didn’t register to vote. He said that he had never found the time to learn about politics and that he did not want to make uninformed decisions in polling stations. But he saw the 2020 election differently.
He had to prepare and participate, just like others.
I’m on this call, said Reuveno, 54, well educated, with many opportunities, privileges, whatever you call it, and I haven’t fulfilled my civic duty to the extent that I should. … It pointed me in the right direction.
I’ve been charging ever since.
The next day, Reuveno twittered the NCAA about withdrawing from the elections. He didn’t play the drums. Reuveno understands the criticism of the NCAA, but ultimately believes in its mission. Since the federal 501(c)(3) duty-free organizations, the NCAA and affiliated schools such as Georgia Tech have a civic responsibility to get athletes to the polls, Reuveno said.
Reuveno began to delve into electoral trends: why young people do not vote in larger numbers, why students register but often fail to complete the election process.
Instead of a basketball analyst, it is a voice analyst, according to Reuveno, who is known as a basketball analyst. Since I was born, the number of voters between the ages of 18 and 24 has dropped. He just keeps falling until people do something. It is not in our nature as trainers to just comment, to talk: It’s no good.
We want a plan.
Fault! The file name is not specified. Reveno (right, opposite) also wants to train players after the presidential election, thanks to Georgia Technology.
After throwing #AllVoteNoPlay, Reveno contacted the coaches he knew: Dixon, Mark Fugh Gonzagi, Kuonzo Martin Missouri, Frank Martin South Carolina – anyone who can help get the message across. He also received an appeal from Kennedy, who expressed his support and explained his experiences in politics. They connected NABC with EVERYONE on campus: a democratic challenge that organizes student registration and participation in the elections. In July, the two organizations issued a ballot in which coaches from across the sport agreed to register all eligible athletes.
So far, 1037 coaches have made a down payment. About 86% of the teams in the first division have one or more coaches, including all Power 5 programs.
It was really easy for me to come and continue to support Eric in any way I could, said Craig Robinson, NABC CEO, who was hired in July. I’ve never met a coach who didn’t think it was a good idea.
Robinson, a former coach in Oregon and at Brown, has a unique connection with elections and voting – former president Barack Obama is his brother-in-law. Robinson, who went to university in 2000, has always made it easy to register players on the electoral lists, including voting in the absence of people from outside the state.
But Mr. Reveno’s idea to cancel sporting events on election day was new.
Think of all these people, it would happen to me, Mr. Robinson. I’ve always tried to practice at a time when I knew everyone could come to their classes and go to the polling station if they wanted to vote in town, but I never thought to say that: Okay, let’s take the day off.
Ethan Hood, chairman of the Department I Student Sports Advisory Committee (SAAC) and former Bowling Green basketball player, first heard about baseball player Hugh Chapman’s proposal on election day. Schools and competitions have promised to take the day off, but no official campaign has been launched yet.
Several people and organizations started looking for help, including former NBA star Chris Bosch, who played Georgia Tech. He’s also well connected to revenge through Chapman.
I followed him on Twitter, and as the summer progressed, he had 60% of my sympathies, Gut said. All groups who contacted the I SAAC department to vote or register student athletes felt that they were present at each call.
Section I of the SAAC has never proposed legislation. Election day, which has been declared a day off forever, is surreal, well said, and adds that it eliminates many excuses for not voting.
Mr. Rice stated that he would vote in absentia on Tuesday and plans to vote in future elections.
My words have certainly been heard by people, Rice. Now all team members are registered to vote. I am very, very proud of the Reverend Coach, I just see how he has managed to spread my message to everyone, to make it bigger and to make it what it is today.
When REVENO started his summer crusade, he often wondered why the coaches resisted such a natural cause. Then he went on Twitter.
I realized that anyone opposed to voter registration has less than 40 supporters, he said. I always said: Voting is not a policy. I will protect her forever. The coaches used to be quiet and talkative. We don’t do politics. That’s what my generation clings to. And the schools supported it, they don’t want to get involved.
I’m just repeating: Voting is not a policy. It’s the backbone of our country.
Fault! The file name is not specified. Reveno continues to tweet, organise and promote the student elections and shows no interest in delaying them after election day. Polite, Eric Reuveno.
The political connection with the vote, even if it was unreasonable, made the coaches reluctant to go all the way.
Every coach has boosters, and there are all these lines, and no one wants to push anyone away, Burns said. But the events of this summer were more than what many of us have experienced and the coaches were very motivated.
Reuveno also wants to train the players after the presidential elections, so that they can participate in the matches below, such as the attorney general and the sheriff, which increased after a stony summer.
The coordination process itself can also be difficult, especially for people from other countries. University athletics is a unique challenge.
My joke is that when we started this voting initiative, we wanted all these guys to sign up to vote in their absence because we introduced a deferral rule so they wouldn’t be in the same place for four years in a row, Dixon said. For example, it will be an annual commitment.
The temporary nature of athletes in higher education, especially basketball, underlines the importance of coaches to promote and facilitate registration and voting. Although most data on youth and voting are not promising, those who go to university are much happier to be able to vote for life.
The pastor and I talked a lot about it: 2020 can’t be one year, Kennedy said. As trainers, we have not fulfilled our task of making social involvement as important as other skills. We need to change that, and we have indeed made great progress.
Reuveno will spend election day on campus. The McCamish Pavilion, home of Georgia Tech, is this year’s voting venue. Players will spend the day voting, if they haven’t already done so, or volunteering on campus. Georgia Tech has started training and will start the season on the 25th. November, so Reveno’s basketball training camp is getting bigger. But the focus on athletes’ voting and social involvement has become an integral part of his professional responsibility.
I can’t help it, he said. It makes sense in the world that it is part of the coach’s repertoire. Ask me in a year: What should I do in local elections? My plan has always been to keep the pressure on.