Watch CBS News

Former Cub And Current Professor Doug Glanville Says It's Important Athletes Don't Just Stick To Sports

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Former Cubs manager Joe Maddon used to say "try not to suck."

So far, 2020 isn't following that rule, and the same can be said for Major League Baseball.

The Players Union has asked for a Monday deadline and won't negotiate anymore on a return to play plan. Of course, the big sticking point is money, but the coronavirus and players' safety are real concerns as well.

Former Cubs outfielder Doug Glanville has taught courses at UConn, Yale and Penn. Glanville thinks baseball can, in a small way, help heal and lead our country.

"It is an opportunity for baseball to give back, not only in a way to entertain, but to bring us back to a place of engagement as a team. Although baseball is non-essential, what we're missing is that spirit of team and we could use that not only on the field, but also for our country and to figure out how we can address these issues in our country," Glanville said.

Glanville played nine years in the major leagues, but is also an adjunct professor teaching a course called, "Sports In Society."

"I teach this class through the lens that it's always important and has been important. There's been many ebbs and flows through the years depending on the sport, depending on the timing. There's always been some relationship where sports has this global impact, sort of community impact," he said. "If you overlay race over that, think about someone like Jackie Robinson. He's not just some athlete, especially to the black community. He was breaking doors down, creating opportunity and basically integrated the first major U.S. institution in our history in 1947. This is well before our military, well before the civil rights act, the voter act and it goes on and on. There's no doubt these athletes represent something larger in our consciousness. When you think about laws changing, political landscape, policy shift. A lot of things have to happen because of sports. I feel like it is mythology (that athletes) have to "stick to sports", when athletes talk, people listen."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.