Saturday, March 13, 2010

Give it the old college Crime?

Apologies-- this photo needs to be updated,
to include a total of 9 players involved in legal issues.

Perhaps this stupid clip, from 2008 was a sign of things to come with the athletic program @ the University of Oregon.
It seems the almighty star athletes of the football team, pampered with full ride scholarships, a brand new athlete only study center, and all that glory is not enough. Several team members have engaged in criminal behavior, From street fights serious enough to land someone in intensive care & needing surgery,
to driving under the influence & without insurance, to a long time lovers quarrel that resulted in domestic violence. the quarterback engaged in a burglary of a laptop computer. There are other issues,
but frankly with so many arrests, it's hard to keep track.
Friday was the big sentencing day.

The star Quarterback Masoli, confessed to second-degree burglary, a low-level felony the court is handling as a misdemeanor, for stealing items from a Eugene fraternity house earned him a season-long suspension from head coach.

Freshman running back LaMichael James pleaded guilty to misdemeanor harassment for a dispute with a girlfriend and was suspended for the first game of the season.

He will be given credit for time previously served toward his ten day sentence, and he must pay a $100 fine.

It is being reported he will likely not serve his 10 days in jail, due to jail overcrowding & matrixing out of criminals.

James is also required to report no later than 2 p.m. on April 1st to the Center for Family Development for a domestic violence evaluation. He is not allowed to have contact of any kind with the Victim, Heidi Lee Siebenlist.

The Judge dismissed four other counts of Strangulation, two counts of Assault in the Fourth Degree, and Harassment.

Wait a minute!

You steal a computer & get suspended for a year.

You get into a domestic altercation that involves strangulation & get a one game suspension??

I think the University just inadvertently endorsed domestic violence.

Coach Chip Kelly is wish washy. In a pathetic press conference, he apologized to fans & faculty (but not the students!!!). He is the same coach who, back in September, when running back LeGarrette Blount punched an opposing player after Oregon's loss to Boise State, prompting Kelly to suspend him for the season.

Kelly later reconsidered the suspension and Blount came back for the final two games, including during a critical stretch in the Ducks' Rose Bowl loss to Ohio State. Critics invoked Kelly's rollback of the punishment in recent months, when nine Oregon players have gotten in trouble ranging from fighting to DUII, as an indication the coach would go soft on misbehavior.

Coach Kelly said each case needed to be individually assessed, and that you could not "group them all together".

I disagree. Yes you can. The Athletic department can and should draw a line in the sand, saying you engage in criminal behavior, you are off the team. The University itself has a code of ethics, but apparently the Athletic department is not required to adhere to that code? That would have sent a clear & authoritative, responsible leadership message to the team. Actions speak louder than words.

What Kelly & the Athletic department did was create a gray zone..... some crimes might be OK, you get to keep your scholarship, even if you engage in strangling your ex girlfriend? M. James lawyered up & plead guilty on the lessor charge, and had the more serious charges dropped.

One message board had this post:

Fire Coach Kelly. That will send a message not only to his players that they will be next up - as to being outed from their scholarships. But it will send a clear message to any subsequent football coach at OUR PUBLIC COLLEGE - that enabling and hand holding and refusing to hold fully accountable illegally acting pampered college athletes is a thing of the past at better deserving University of Oregon.

Kelly - you need to GO. WE don't need you. We don't DESERVE you.

YOU are replaceable. You and your undeserved and unethical multi-million dollar public salary - for certain.

Last year, some students came out with a video "I love my Ducks" (the Duck football team), which resulted in a product line of I Love my Ducks t shirts & apparel.
Now there is a new theme & product like
I love my THUGS...

For the record, I don't love my thugs. The fact the Coach apologized to the fans & Faculty, and not the Students of the Campus-- you know the ones that are there for the main purpose the University primarily exists for-- higher education, shows where his head is at, and how out of touch he is. His 5 year, $7 million dollar salary might be clouding his decision making.
I think it is BS for the coach to let the domestic violence crime yield a 1 game suspension.


nonnie9999 said...

the female students need to stage a protest or something. when football is more important than the safety of everyone, then the administration needs to reconsider their priorities. if i had a kid going to that school, especially a daughter, i'd be screaming my head off.

Fran said...

This is quite the effed up situation. Not just the female students ALL the students need to let the athletics dept know they expect the football team to adhere to the code of conduct.

One frigging game suspension!

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