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The Buckeyes Mess

December 25, 2010 - Al Stephenson
I was surprised to say the least. That members of the Ohio State Buckeye football team broke NCAA rules and will be suspended for the first five games next year? No. That it included the stud QB, the top RB and arguably the best WR on the team? Nah. What surprises me is the different reactions from people concerning the fiasco.

And that would include me!

My reactions are such that I can't possibly detail all of them in this one blog. I have thoughts on the players themselves, the OSU athletic director, the NCAA, pay for collegiate football players and even Mark May's rant on ESPN. In the coming days you may get sick of my own rants, but for now you will have to get my feelings on Pryor, Herron, Posey et. al. That is if you choose to keep reading.

What the heck is wrong with college athetes? What makes them feel compelled to risk eligibility for what seems like chump change? Do they feel entitiled, ala Tiger? Do they think they won't get caught, like typical teenagers? Are they just plain stupid?

OK, let's get one thing out of the way right from the start. Many of the NCAA rules are petty, ridiculous and yes, stupid. That being said, the rules are there for a reason and like them or not, a player risks a lot when he chooses to break them. If you thought Buckeye players would be smarter than players from other institutions of higher learning and thus would not knowingly break NCAA rules - well, you need to have your head examined.

That doesn't diminish the fact that as a Buckeye fan, I'm really disappointed in the actions of these players. My question is why? I'm not buying the two main excuses. The first is the idea that they did not know it was wrong. If you are not sure, ask someone! That's why OSU and other colleges employ several people to enlighten you. The second excuse, one that is more easily palatable for many, is that you are selling items to help out your poor mother. Pryor used that argument. Please, please, PLEASE. If you were that concerned you could have left Ohio State after your freshman or sophomore year and headed for the NFL where enough money would have been thrown at you to take care of mom for the rest of her life.

These guys could have abstained from wrong doing. Instead the players decided to risk their eligibility and let down their teammates, their university and their fans. I cannot find it in my heart to sympathize with these guys. No argument will get me to change my mind.

The view from my seat suggests that if these guys do not return next year because of the suspensions - so be it. Good bye and good riddance. Let's get some players that will play by the rules.

They will be much easier to root for.


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