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Saturday, February 5, 2011

Pennsylvania's 7s

The Ben Roethlisberger's crime vs. Michael Vick's crime is hackneyed, but I won't let it pass without getting my two cents in. While there are exceptions on both sides, the prevailing narrative seems to be that Roethlisberger is "on the road to redemption", while Vick is still "that guy who killed dogs". I call BS.

The fact is that Vick was convicted of his crimes, while Roethlisberger was never even tried for his alleged transgressions is a striking difference. Yet few argue that that is because Vick was guilty and Roethlisberger is innocent. Ben himself has apologized for... um, stuff; Commissioner Goodell clearly believed there was wrongdoing; even those telling "redemption" tales believe Ben was in the wrong. After all, what else would he be redeeming himself from? What this means is that Vick has served his time for his crimes, while Roethlisberger has gotten off scot-free, save for a six game suspension, knocked down to four for good behavior (read: Not raping anyone for a little while).

Here's the thing: Last I checked, one does not pay his debt to society by winning football games. In the system set up in this nation and most in the world, that's done by serving time. It seems to me Michael Vick, not Ben Roethlisberger, should be the redemption story.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Something else I don't give a damn about...

...besides the Pro Bowl.

Today is National Signing Day, and to hear my Twitter timeline tell it, it's Christmas wrapped in the 4th of July with a side of New Year's Eve. I know I've been using the phrase quite a bit, but I don't give a damn.

This is for two reasons. First and foremost, I am fundamentally against giving high schoolers--minors, in some cases--that much burn. No one who remains in Chris Hansen's good graces should be paying that much attention to high schoolers. We wonder why they step on campus as though their defecation produces no odor? When you give an 18 year old the opportunity to stage their own version of "The Decision", that's bound to happen.

The second is this: There is no telling if a high school star will be as good as advertised when they hit your team. He may not fit your system, he may have peaked in high school, or the fact that college athletes are bigger, faster, stronger, and more physical than high schoolers may prove too daunting. Add that to the fact that there's a good chance he'll redshirt, and you might not see the guy you're drooling over in February until the September a year and a half away. Not something I can get too worked up over. By the same token, I watch the NFL draft not for who the Eagles will pick up, but for where USF players will go. There's just no telling.
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