Dear Coach: My five-year-old daughter is interested in T-ball, but my wife doesn't want her to start because she'll only be disappointed later in life when she finds out baseball is for boys only. Is my wife right?
Dear Trouble: Tell your wife not to look too far down the road. Your daughter should explore all kinds of athletic endeavors, since her interests will almost certainly change several times. More important, don't discourage her because of possible roadblocks. Opportunities for women—even in traditionally male-dominated sports—are growing. More than 1,300 girls played varsity baseball last year, according to the National Federation of State High School Associations. So forget about glass ceilings and realize there's a future in baseball for your daughter—if she wants it.
Dear Coach: I'm a high school basketball coach, and the point guard and the power forward on my team don't get along. Each thinks he should be the team leader, and the friction is tearing the team apart. What to do?
DIVIDED WE FALL
Dear Divided: Making your stars play like Stockton and Malone instead of Shaq and Kobe is your responsibility. "Sit them down and explain that they don't have to like each other, but they have to get along," says Dan Doyle, former coach at Division III Trinity College in Hartford. "Tell them if they don't, they'll sit. The best player on the floor is the team unit." It might be tough to have your stars on the bench, but be firm. Says Doyle, "Make it clear if they want to play, they play by your rules."