How do you win the WIAA/Rural Mutual Sportsmanship Award?

The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association (WIAA) and Rural Mutual Insurance will select one school that displays exceptional sportsmanship in each team tournament as recipients of the Sportsmanship Award.

All schools are eligible for the award, regardless of the number of games played. The WIAA will also give honorable mention recognition to schools under consideration for the top award.

Judging will be done by game officials, scoring personnel, WIAA tournament management, security personnel, parking personnel, hotel personnel, and regional and sectional tournament managers.

Judges will evaluate and rate the cheerleaders, spectator sections (students and adults), coaches, players, etc., of each school during the total tournament.

The judging criteria includes evaluations in the following 6 categories:


Be Respectful to All

Desirable Behavior: Opposing coaches and players shaking hands after the game; players shaking hand of opponent fouling out and showing concern for injured player; respectfully addressing officials during competition and thanking them for their performance, regardless of agreement with calls.


Know the Rules,  Abide by and Respect the Official’s Decisions


Desirable Behavior: Utilize every opportunity to promote understanding of the rules of a contest within the school and community; players use the team captain or coach for clarification of a call; accept the decisions of the officials; cheerleaders lead fans in positive school cheering in a favorable manner; cooperate with the news media in interpretation and clarification of rules.



Win with Character and Lose with Dignity


Desirable Behavior: Handshakes between opposing players and coaches at end of a contest, regardless of outcome; opposing players, coaches, and fans engaging in friendly conversation before and following contest; treating competition as a game, not a conflict; applause at end of contest for performance of all players.



Display Appreciation for Good Performance Regardless of the Team


Desirable Behavior: Coach/players seek out opposing participants to recognize them for outstanding performance or coaching; all fans recognize an outstanding participant’s performance by applause, regardless of its impact on the contest; discuss outstanding performance of opponent with visiting and home fans.



Exercise Self-Control and Reflect Positively upon Yourself, Team and School

Desirable Behavior: Support the activity by learning positive, respectful cheers and displaying unity as fans in following the lead of cheerleaders.



Permit Only Positive Sportsmanlike Behavior to Reflect on Your School

Desirable Behavior: Encourage those around you to display only positive, respectful sportsmanlike conduct; report poor sportsmanship to school officials; insist that sportsmanship be a priority at interscholastic events; administrators help coaches to teach, model, and reinforce sportsmanship; recognize coaches for sportsmanlike conduct; coaches will only play those who exhibit positive sportsmanship; administrators will take appropriate action to ensure sportsmanlike behavior.