Eventually all that can possibly be said is a rousing ‘C’mon, man’
You’ve all seen the segments on TV. A coach, athlete or fan does something that makes one pause. It may be a scintillating feat or an ingenious decision. More likely, the event involves the person doing something stupid.
After viewing the scene, the phrase “C’mon Man” is put forth. Whatever the case, it seems that the person who views the incident can’t believe what he just saw.
I’ve seen a few of these fascinating moments recently, and I’d like to share them with you.
The Urination Celebration. First of all, let me say that I never thought I would use this word in my column, and I am not talking about celebration! The incident has been described this way and if you have seen it, you’ll agree it fits my criterion.
It was the final week of college football’s regular season. The game where it took place was the Ole’ Miss versus Mississippi State contest commonly known as the Egg Bowl.
With the Bulldogs leading by a score of 21-14 late in the fourth quarter, the Rebels scored a touchdown with four seconds left. The game was seemingly headed to overtime, but not so fast my friends. Ole’ Miss wide receiver Elijah Moore was so proud of his TD catch that he though a celebration was in order.
He crawled across the end zone on all fours before lifting his leg like a dog to, well… you know! The act was considered unsportsmanlike conduct and Ole’ Miss was hit with a 15 yard penalty. The referee announced that it would be enforced on the ensuing kickoff, but Mississippi State had other thoughts.
It chose to use the yardage to make the extra point (a mere formality?) a little more difficult. Well, you knew what was going to happen. The Ole’ Miss kicker missed the extra point attempt and the Bulldogs won the game 21-20. The Rebels, and in particular Elijah Moore, were left with a little “egg” on their faces.
To make matters worse Ole’ Miss coach Matt Luke was fired the following week. Now, you can make the argument that the “celebration” did not cost Ole’ Miss the game and more things likely went into the firing than this incident. You also can argue that Moore’s action was a contributing factor in both.
I hope all football players saw the result of this act and will learn to be like Barry Sanders — hand the ball to the official after you score and head back to the bench.That won’t happen of course and similar incidents will likely happen again. As for Elijah Moore:
Bowling for Hours. Le’Veon Bell, the New York Jets running back, was ruled out for his team’s game a couple of weeks ago by team doctors. He had been sick with the flu and lost eight pounds and was officially ruled out on Saturday — the day before the scheduled contest.
Bell decided that he, along with family and friends, would go bowling Saturday night. The fun evening lasted until early Sunday morning and of course it was witnessed by enough people that it came to light in the press.
You can imagine the reaction from Jets fans. I once played a college basketball game with the flu, leaving the bench more than once to visit the locker room to “toss my cookies” but never once considered NOT playing. I know Bell did not have a choice in his playing status, but discretion is sometimes the better part of valor.
It was a bad look. Le’Veon Bell did not have to sit at home on Saturday, but he should have considered it. My feelings about the incident are mixed, but what really surprised me was how shocked Bell was that his actions created an up roar among fans.
For that reason alone, I say to Le’veon Bell…
The State Champion Clyde Fliers. When the Clyde Fliers football team finished the season with a respectable 6-4 record and the eighth and final spot in the playoffs, most people had to assume that their season would be extended by one week.
The thought of winning a state championship had to be far removed from everyone’s mind with the possible exception of coach Ryan Carter and his players. I’m not sure even any of them could realistically think a state championship would be forthcoming — could they? Come on man.
But then a funny thing happened. The Fliers jelled and started knocking off opponents, week by week. They vanquished the No. 1 one seed in their first game and the top rated team in the state in another. Eventually the trophy was brought back to Clyde.
Now, I suppose there are a few folks who think that Clyde was lucky. Most of those are likely supporters of teams that ran afoul of the Fliers along the tournament trail. To suggest that this was just a lucky feat does not do justice to this football team.
It played hard, played well and achieved a wonderful dream. For anyone to suggest otherwise deserves this:
I’d like to finish with something that I saw some six years ago while driving on the Indiana Toll Road near the Chicago metropolitan area. It seems very appropriate to this column.
A large billboard with a Chicago Cubs colors blue background and red lettering in the Cubs printing style said simply:
Al Stephenson is a columnist for The Advertiser-Tribune.
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