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Playing cards with coach Carmichael

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OSU coach Colin Carmichael during the Cowgirl soccer game against TCU on Friday, October 9, 2020, at Neal Patterson Stadium in Stillwater.

OSU soccer coach Colin Carmichael has done something in back-to-back games he had not done since 2016.

“Coming into this year, I hadn’t had a yellow card in four years,” Carmichael said. “To get them in back to back games, I was really disappointed in myself first of all.”

Last Friday, in a game against TCU, Carmichael thought one of his players had been kicked late by an opposing player. Carmichael pleaded his case to the onlooking official in an effort to protect his player.

“I got a little emotional,” Carmichael said. My hands were moving, and I was excitable, so I guess the official wanted me to calm down. I was told my hand gestures were what did it.”

Carmichael was also shown a yellow card for a similar moment two weeks ago in Waco. He said that for both yellow cards he was a bit surprised and that players on his team and the opposing coaches wondered why exactly Carmichael was shown a yellow.

Ever since his yellow card in one of the final matches of the 2016 season, Carmichael made a commitment to do a better job of communicating with the officials.

“I think I’ve been doing a lot better on the sideline with interacting with the officials, and in the last two weeks, I didn’t really feel like I’d been any extra emotional or upset, but for some reason, I got dinged,” Carmichael said.

The yellow cards are in the past, and the only thing Carmichael can do about them now is make another commitment.

“I’ll take it and I’ll do better in the next few,” Carmichael said. “Mark my words, I’ll probably regret saying this, but I won’t get another one the rest of the way.”

The yellow cards aren’t limited to just coaches.

OSU defender Charmé Morgan thinks that the last time she got a yellow card was the final game of last season. Although she couldn’t remember the exact play, she thinks it was probably because she got too physical with an opponent.

Carmichael did not criticize Morgan for getting carded in the match.

“He (Carmichael) understands that sometimes you just get a little too physical it happens,” Morgan said. “He definitely understands the game and sometimes it’s just out of your control and you might just get a little too physical.”

Getting carded is less common for other players.

It took OSU forward Olyvia Dowell a second to think back to the last time she was shown a card.

“I do remember one of them, but it was like fifth grade and that was just in a game where I said something about a handball,” Dowell said. “I haven’t gotten one in a long time.”

Dowell said that she has never gotten a red card and the only thing she would ever do to warrant a card would be talking back to the referee.

“I’ve never actually gotten a yellow card for any sort of crazy play or sliding into anyone,” Dowell said. “I’m not a super aggressive player when it comes to initiating things, normally I’m the one getting beat up or initiated at.”

Players getting penalized for over-aggressive play or coaches getting penalized for verbal banter with an official is obviously not desirable.

Carmichael said he certainly doesn’t encourage the activity, but he knows it’s not something that will likely be cut out completely.

“(It’s) not unique to me or to soccer,” Carmichael said. “It’s just a part of sports I think when coaches feel like they can maybe help protect their players a little bit.”