>\n\nRandom football blogitude...Whiners and crybabies edition \n\n\n\n

Random football blogitude...Whiners and crybabies edition

Written by Curt Popejoy on 07/27/2010

So much to talk about this week and most of it centers on the whining and complaining in football.  It's just become hard to hear, so let's dive right in.

Seems that Hazing-gate is all the rage on the internets.  Long story short, Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Roy Williams asks Cowboys rookie Dez Bryant to carry his pads, and Bryant refuses, citing that he's there to play football not carry someone's pads.

Dez, you are an idiot.  I didn't make this decision today.  I didn't make it when you forgot your cleats for your pro day.  It goes back further to when he was dumb enough to lose his eligibility by making a really stupid decision.  A decision that he knew was wrong.

And in this long line of bad decisions, he decides to defy a veteran and not do what has become generally accepted as a right of passage for NFL rookies. 

First, let me say this.  It's not hazing.  By definition, if you haze someone, it is done because it's contingent on them getting into the program.  Fraternity pledges are hazed prior to being allowed in.  Bryant is already on the team, so it's not hazing.  Sorry, but that choice of wording really gets to me.

Second, Bryant should have carried Williams pads.  Has Williams proven to be more bust than boom in his career?  Yes, but that doesn't matter in this.  No rookie is immune to this sort of initiation, regardless.  I suspect that this issue will be handled in house by the rest of the Cowboys WR and Bryant's defiance won't be an issue again.  So to anyone trying to justify what Bryant did.  You really don't understand what you are talking about.

NFL labor issues

Another hot button topic is the labor problems between players and ownership in the NFL and the potential work stoppage in 2011.  Let me say this in as simple terms as I can.

The owners of these NFL teams own these teams to make money, and in a free enterprise system, have the right to do whatever they need to, in order to make as much money as possible.  People are boo hooing because they think the owners are trying to screw the players union over.  I can understand wanting to sympathize with them, but don't think for one minute it's good for football for the players union to win.  Because it isn't.  In any business where a Union becomes too powerful, it seriously affects the profits of the owners, which then in turn impacts the product to the consumer.  It's very much basic business principles. 

I love the fact that the NFL is the perfect league in that it's a team first league.  You root for the jersey not the name on the back of it, and the players are not bigger than the league.  Anyone who loves the NFL needs to understand this.  Instead they are crying for more transparency from owners and more sacrifices for the sakes of the players, but they are required to do neither.  If owners start to cave to players now, we'll end up with Major League Baseball in no time. 

NCAA wackiness

Oh my has the NCAA gone nuts.  First the NCAA swings the ban hammer on USC and the world goes crazy.  I was trying to be sympathetic to USC fans, but they have just become crybabies, so screw 'em.  I'm glad your team is a grease fire and I hope this sets the program back for a decade.

Speaking of USC, they have decided to disavow any knowledge of the existence of Reggie Bush, including taking his Heisman trophy down because of his violations.  I find this completely hilarious.  Not because I think it's fair, but because the reaction by college football fans is so funny.  Other than Pro Bowl MVP there is no award more overrated than the Heisman.  I didn't think Bush should have won it in the first place, so the fact they took it from him makes little difference to me.  I said in an earlier blog, this was a shot across the bow to other programmes to get their acts together and that hasn't changed.  I do find it pretty funny that One-Pete is sitting at a coffee shop in Seattle somewhere laughing about all this, because he got away.  He'll never be so happy to be a 6 win team as he will this year knowing that he's out of that grease fire.

And now on the heels of all this, the NCAA has started dropping in on high profile programs like Georgia, Alabama, Florida, and North Carolina.  Why are people shocked at this?  And what are they finding?  That college football players are violating rules.  This should come as a shock, sort of like the 500lb guy waking up one morning and discovering he's fat. 

But having said that, there are a few points that I think are being looked at in the wrong light.

First, colleges provide athletes with privileges beyond the rules all the time.  This is not new information.  I've spoken to NFL players while they were in college who've admitted it.  Obviously they won't say this publicly, but it happens.  Big whoop.  That's not the issue here. 

The issue are these agent contacts.  The schools are taking a lot of heat for not policing these things better.  I don't believe it's the school's job to do that.  They have enough to worry about to monitor these kids off field/campus stuff.  But let me say this.  They could monitor it.  Why?  Because let's be honest.  Even on a great team like Alabama, they have about  4 or 5 2011 draft prospects on their team.  And those are the guys these agents are targeting.  This isn't a case of 50 guys to keep track of.  So, while I don't let colleges off the hook when they say they CAN'T keep an eye on all these  kids, I do let them off the hook that they shouldn't have to. 

And why shouldn't they?  Because none of these young men can plead ignorance to the rules they are breaking.  Marcel Dareus knew going to that party in South Florida was a violation.  But he just didn't think he'd get caught.  So, don't cry for Dareus.  He'll still make millions in the NFL, just like dopey Dez Bryant.  But if he doesn't get to play this season he has no one to blame but himself.

I fully expect the hammer to keep swinging across the board.  Teams like North Carolina better be aware that you were going to ride that defense all year long, you might end up losing some horses.  At some point the easy job of keeping these dopey agents away from a team's best players is going to have to become a babysitting issue for compliance staff at Universities.  It's a shame that these petulant children can't do the right thing, but it's part of the baggage you take on, when you lure these kids in.  You never hear about these problems at North Texas because they have been shrewd in never bringing in high profile players.  Good move North Texas.

Where will TO land?

So now it's down to 2 teams, the Bengals and Jets for the services of Terrell Owens.  After giving this a little thought it seems to me that TO would be happier in Cinci and a much better fit.  The Jets have starting wide outs in place, even if one of them is going to be suspended for the start of the year.  TO has a real shot to start opposite Ochostinko with the Bengals.  And since we all know that Owens is prone to crybaby outbursts and tantrums on the sidelines, I give Carson Palmer the nod in a big way as better able to deal with him and his attitude.  The Jets are probably a better shot at a Super Bowl, which you would hope is a draw to TO, but let's be honest.  TO wants two things.  A big check and a lot of catches.  If he cared about winning he'd have never gone to Buffalo.  If he does end up in Cinci, he and Stinko can make the team a huge circus, and VH1 can sponsor the stadium, and it'll all be good for them.  On the upside all the noise these two clowns create will help deflect some of the attention of all the Bengals players and their arrests.

Last Edited: 07/27/2010

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