No Peace, No Sports—How Civil Unrest Could Change Sporting Events

Available for Interviews: Rob Cornilles.

For a quarter century Rob Cornilles has been known as the “sales coach for sports.” His firm, Game Face, Inc., pioneered executive training for professional and collegiate sports teams and has since advised more than 40,000 executives at more than 300 sports brands worldwide, forever changing how sports and entertainment properties connect with their fans.

What Rob Cornilles can say in an interview
on Sports and Civil Unrest:

As major league sports prepare to return in July (as has been widely reported) those plans will likely be scuttled due to the civil unrest rocking American cities.

  • No fan, already worried about health concerns, will return to stadiums when you throw safety concerns on top of it.
  • Players are not going to want to venture into urban locales where most venues are located, if their safety cannot be assured.
  • Sports may not be as important as peaceful protesting, but sports is a healing agent that will now be pushed back until the carnage stops.
  • The very communities that rely on sporting events to build up their economy are being hurt from this outbreak of violence across major markets.


Fans are the customer. Give them what they want—which is to be entertained, not emotionally drained. People see sports as a release from the anxieties of the world, not a place to wade in them.

For months fans have been hit in the gut with COVID-19, job loss, health issues, lockdowns, loneliness, anti-socialization, and uncertainty. When sports resume, if they’re then hit with controversial topics—however perceived—they might rebel against sports and say good riddance for good.

Sports leagues must be VERY careful. Professional athletes, making more and having greater job security than 99% of the fan base, cannot be seen as victims. It will be interpreted as complete tone-deafness to what their fans have and are experiencing in 2020.

Fans are tired of infiltrating social issues and politics in every facet of their lives. It’s been non-stop, 24/7, for months now. If the NFL, for instance, thought the kneeling issue was an issue two years ago, bringing race politics and other social issues into their game presentation after COVID will further disenfranchise their fan base—not because the issue is controversial but because it is NOT SPORTS.


Interview: Rob Cornilles.

Rob Cornilles is the Founder and CEO of Game Face. Today, its proprietary methodologies are being adopted in such diverse markets as tech, professional and financial services, retail, law, media, and manufacturing. When not training professional and collegiate organizations, Rob serves as an adjunct professor at Brigham Young University’s Marriott School and Maryville University (St. Louis, MO). His upcoming book, From Backboards to Boardrooms, is due out later this year.


Jo Allison
Managing Editor
Director of Public Relations
Success In Media, Inc.


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