Troublemakers on campus

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There always have been incidents of fights, stealing, drunkenness and other forms of lack of disciplinary behavior among college athletes, particularly in the high profile sports of football and basketball. But 30 years ago, they were isolated issues. Today, they are breaking out in nearly every program.

Think of some of the troublemakers from the Chicago area...Boo Boo Thompson, Kyle Williams, Phillip Macklin, Yarmo Green, Ryan Hare, to name a few. Just read the sports section daily and you see one example after another of kids who are getting into trouble in college. And some colleges have a long history of troublemakers.

How do you explain it?

There is a feeling among athletes that they have a sense of entitlement in recruiting. They get it from the parents and high school coaches and now the college coaches. They form a buddy/buddy relationship, not a coach/player relationship. The coach is one of the boys.

Lack of discipline shows in many programs. Kids aren't afraid of the coaches or of being thrown off the team. There is a lack of respect for the coaching staff and the university which creates incidents of disciplinary behavior.

Kids feel they can do anything they want because they have been told that while being recruited. They can indulge in all the fun and partying they can. Rules aren't made for them but for other students. They have carte blanche to do as they please. The worst thing that will happen to them is a slap on the wrist, a day without recess.

What do you expect from kids who are pampered and spoiled, who are exposed to private campus housing that can be compared to the Trump Tower?

Coaches become their best friends. There is no fear as there once was. They are peers instead of having fears, no coach/player relationship, no Mike Ditka or Murney Lazier or Frank Leahy or Bear Bryant.

College coaches have to sell their souls to these kids in order to recruit them and it comes back to haunt them when the kids think they can do as they please on campus. Every program has problems and some programs always will have problems. You don't have to check the rap sheet to know who they are.

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3 Comments

IT MAKES YOU SICK TO YOUR STOMACH TO SEE A BLUE CHIP ATHLETE THROW IT ALL AWAY, IT MAKES YOU CRINGE TO SEE A PERSON WITH THE WORLD BY THE TAIL THROW IT ALL AWAY, BY HANGING OUT WITH THOSE WHO DON'T HAVE THEIR TALENT LEVEL, NEVER HAD IT, WILL NEVER HAVE IT, BUT THEY CONVINCE THE PLAYER THAT HANGING OUT WITH THEM IS A COOL THING, AND WHEN THEY THROW YOU IN JAIL OR PRISON, OR OFF THE CAMPUS AND YOU LOOK BACK HOW GREAT YOU HAD IT, ALL IT IS, IS A FOND MEMORY OF STUPIDITY!
I AM NOT GOING TO CALL OUT ANY NAMES BUT I HAVE SEEN WITH MY OWN EYES COUNTLESS ATHLETES WHO WERE ON THE VERGE OF GREATNESS, BUT THEY THREW IT ALL AWAY, HANGING OUT WITH INDIVIDUALS WHO DID NOT HAVE THEIR BEST INTEREST AT HEART!
IN THE OLD DAYS WHEN AN INDIVIDUAL MADE IT TO THAT SPECIAL CAMPUS OF THEIR CHOICE, THEY KNEW THAT THEY REPRESENTED AN ENTIRE NEIGHBORHOOD, THEIR FAMILY, THEIR CHURCH, EVERYONE WHOM HAD EVER WORKED WITH THEM TO ACHIEVE THE GREATNESS THEY OBTAINED, THEY KNEW THEY COULDN'T LET THEM DOWN, AND WHEN THEY RETURNED A CONQUERING HERO, THEY THEN KNEW ALL THE HARD WORK HAD A PURPOSE, AND THAT IS WHAT LIFE IS ALL ABOUT, HEY DIDN'T SOMEONE WRITE THAT BOOK, THE PURPOSE DRIVEN LIFE, IT IS THE TRUTH, STOP LETTING THOSE WHO CAN'T CONVINCE YOU TO DO BAD THINGS, BE YOUR OWN MAN OR WOMAN AND SUCCEED, YOUR ATTITUDE WILL DETERMINE YOUR ALTITUDE!

It comes down to knowing right from wrong. Most of us were taught that by first grade; these things are right, these are wrong. The Golden Rule was taught. Somewhere along the line these guys think that those rules don't apply to them because of the athletic ability. They find out along that way that is incorrect thinking.

We live in an age of excess. I'm sure everyone does not want to hear about the "old days," but I can compare "then to now." I will say this: Without doubt the athletes today are bigger, stronger and faster. However, I know, and this is a generality, that collectively athletes are fundamentally "dumber." The reason I say this is they are more concerned now with "flash and dash," "shake and bake," and "bling." Don't learn how to shoot and defend, just "run and gun." Free throw accuracy -- naaahh -- I can dunk. If the play ain't comin to me -- well, I just ain't tryin so hard. I can do what I want --"I'm a 4-Star player." I "trash talk, because I'm soooo good."

Yes I know there were your "hot dogs" of old. I know there were your "big mouths" of old. However, in the "old days" the things mentioned here were not "glorified" to the high heavens. Overlooking so called "mistakes" is the fad now. If you're good, you get a pass.

Well, I can't say this didn't occur to some degree 20, 30 or 40 years ago, but it didn't permeate athletics like it has now.

Sports is big because of --- exposure. Exposure is money. Money is the "Be All and End All" of our society. Make a buck for the system and you are OK by the system.

Folks it wasn't nearly that way 30 years ago.

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This page contains a single entry by Second Season published on October 1, 2009 12:24 PM.

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