Wow. I can’t believe Sports Illustrated even published that.
That was my immediate reaction after reading the first highly-anticipated (and not in a good way) piece in the expose series SI came out with against Oklahoma State University’s football program. I’m not going to even give the link for it. Let’s be honest, I totally realize that OSU is my alma mater and I’m going to be slightly biased. But, I’m certainly not a crazy unrealistic super-fan who is blinded by my love for the school. In fact, I’m still a little miffed at them for all the student loans I had to take out to cover their ridiculous fees. But, that’s neither here nor there. Here’s my take on it so far:
Oh, cool, the author is the guy who is famous for using unnamed sources in take-down pieces when he worked for FOXsports.com and was fired from the NY Times for creating stories. I think he got in trouble at ESPN for paying sources, too. How is this guy still even working? Next we have 8 players quoted in this first article, seven of whom left under less than honorable conditions. They implicate dead people in the story. Hmmm. Also, no real evidence. It’s all he-said, she-said. Is SI a tabloid? I feel like I was required to cite more credible sources in middle school.
Okay, now for the allegations. It’s mainly about coaches and boosters paying players after big games or players doing easy jobs and getting paid good money. I don’t know all the NCAA rules and I’m not about to go look them up but here’s my thoughts. A lot of these players come in dirt poor. That’s just how it is. They come to school on a football scholarship but that doesn’t give them money to live on. So, personally, I see nothing wrong if citizens of the community want to overpay them for jobs or gift them cash now and then to get by on. When I was in high school ag boosters did it all the time at auctions and stuff. They’d way overpay for an animal that the kid kept. I know it’s a different situation with college athletes because of NCAA regs but I don’t see a big problem with being generous to kids who are broke. Coaches should clearly not be giving out cash and if they did, especially in front of everyone, they are major idiots and I can’t believe it stayed a secret for ten years.
Drug use is a serious issue (not that I think marijuana is really a big deal) but seriously, who smokes weed before a football game? Doesn’t it just make you tired and hungry? Gatorade before, weed after. That’s what they should do if they are going to smoke (which they probably shouldn’t because it’s illegal and not too healthy). But, I’m not surprised at all if we find out some college athletes smoked pot. SHOCKING. I bet they drank a beer a few times too.
It’s just really weak. Of course, OSU should and will thoroughly investigate all allegations but I’m not so worried about the scandal now that I’ve read the first article. The next articles focus on academics and sex. I’m really not going to be surprised if some players got other people to do their work or whatever. I do hope that no professors or administrators were in on cheating but if that piece is like the first, we will never know because our sources are admitted LYING, CHEATING DRUG USERS WHO TOOK BRIBES. AND THEY ARE BRAGGING ABOUT IT. Forgive me if I doubt their credibility. As far as the sex article goes, supposedly a few girls in the hostess program slept with some recruits. DUH. Of course they did. That’s dumb. Did the authors even go to college? Just because a few promiscuous college students hooked up with some studly football players doesn’t mean OSU is corrupt. Sheesh.
So, my overall take on the big scandal that rocked no one: *yawn.* Go Pokes!