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Tag Archives: rules
image courtesy of trackemtigers.com
[*If you generally skip my posts concerning sports, this one is also about Christianity, slavery, and drawing and quartering people. Come on, give just this one sports post a shot.]
Okay, I’ll admit it. All this Cam Newton stuff has got me really riled up. You know when one character in a movie realizes something nobody else knows, and they try to explain it but no one believes them, and you just want to yell at the screen for them to listen to the guy, because he knows what he’s talking about? That’s how I feel. I don’t believe I’m smarter than everyone else (or anyone else) — that’s not my deal. I just can’t seem to find anyone willing to think through this in logical fashion. At least no one willing to offer me acceptable or reasonable answers.
I’ve posted on some comment boards, asking some of the very questions I asked in my last post. Basically I’m wanting to know:
Why do so many of us support the punishment of innocent people in the area of college football recruitment?
Do we really think it’s fair to end the academic and athletic career of a student athlete whose greedy relative tried, unbeknownst to the player, to shop him around for money?
So far, I’ve received three types of answers:
- We have to be consistent. In the past we’ve punished some players for the sins of their relatives. We can’t just change our minds now. We’ve always done it this way.
- We need to be extremely strict on this, so as to deter it from happening in the future. We punish the player regardless of his involvement or knowledge of the wrongdoing because that will teach other students’ parents not to do this.
- Are you an idiot?! You must be, because everyone in the whole world has met and discussed this and we all agree except for you. The NCAA agrees with us, as do most of the conference officials and university presidents. We punish Cam Newton and others like him simply because most of us think we should — especially those really important people.
I don’t know about you, but I believe all three of these reasons to be full of crap. Get this — using these same three arguments, I’ll offer some other suggestions that must be good, right, and logical:
- Slavery is good. Really, we should keep this whole people-as-property thing going. Why rid ourselves of a perfectly good system? I mean we’ve always done it this way.
- Henceforth, from this point on, we will draw-and-quarter any student athlete whose parent or other relative has inquired at any university concerning a pay-for-play plan. Then we will send the four portions of his lifeless body to the four corners of these United States. We will teach parents that they can’t do this sort of thing. We’ve just got to hit them where it hurts. Slaughter their children.
- Let’s keep the current BCS system forever; it’s so awesome and all the officials and school presidents like it so much already. Forget a playoff, everybody — computers and polls are where it’s at.
And just for the sake of pushing a little further, let me try this all again but with Christianity as my subject of choice:
- Well, we’ve always met in a building with a steeple and a lot of pews that all face the front. And you want us to consider meeting in someone’s home now? Where will the preacher put his pulpit? And do we really have the funds to buy songbooks for everyone to keep at home? How in the world will we know if everyone’s following our required order of worship (welcome – 2 songs – opening prayer – 2 songs – scripture reading – 1 song – communion – giving – 1 song and mark another in your songbooks – sermon – invitation song (previously marked) – elder speaks for a moment – song – closing prayer)?
- All forms of dancing are wrong and evil. Males and females cannot and should not swim together or near enough to one another to be seen while in bathing suits. Any alcohol is sin, and Harry Potter is Satan incarnate. Anyone involved in any of these activities — or who knows someone who is — will be shunned, gossiped about, and possibly disfellowshipped or excommunicated.
- Are you kidding?! Everyone knows the way to reach out to the lost is to have an awesome band on Sunday morning and a knock-off Starbucks coffee shop in what used to be the foyer (we now call it the cafe). Yeah, all the biggest churches are doing it, and all the biggest Christian authors are writing about it….
Someone please offer me a better reason for punishing an innocent student athlete for the sins of his father.
image courtesy of trackemtigers.com
In light of the SEC Championship game and all the news on Cameron Newton, I wanted to post just a few of my thoughts and concerns. There’s an awful lot of talk out there about the loophole now present in the NCAA. I realize there is a loophole at this time — that a parent could potentially shop his kid around to universities, provided the athlete “doesn’t know” about these dealings. But here’s what I’m thinking:
- First of all, and my biggest question, why would we ever think it would be okay to punish an unknowing son for the wrongs done by his greedy father? Does that seem fair in any way? Whether money was exchanged or not, this just isn’t right.
- When forced to err on the side of either justice or mercy, I myself choose to err towards mercy. I realize national institutions, governments, and the like can’t be expected do that. But the Cam Newton Debacle is not an issue of justice versus mercy. To punish a player for the sins of a family member is to travel far beyond justice and deep into the realm of injustice.
- I understand there’s a loophole. but are we refusing justice simply because we’re afraid it will be abused? Because rules get abused every day; that’s life. I would suggest we find a way to punish the wrongdoer and not his offspring. The answer to rules being abused is not to punish the innocent — and there’s no such thing as guilt by genetics. I don’t really care how big a loophole there is, no 21-year old kid can force his father to behave, or be expected to — especially if he doesn’t even know about the situation.
- Everyone is worried about “the slippery slope.” We don’t want to set a precedent that this sort of thing can happen in college athletics. But what about the alternative precedent, this one: We like to end students’ academic and athletic careers because of offenses they neither committed nor knew about. Is that the precedent we want to set?
- And I’ve also got this question continually nagging me: Where is the line? How far away does a family member of a college athlete have to be before the athlete is not himself held responsible for that individual’s actions? What if it were Cam Newton’s brother who’d asked for money without him knowing? What if it had been his brother-in-law? What about his stepmother? Or an abusive father who lost custody in a divorce ten years prior? Grandmother? What if it was me who asked for money from Auburn, and agreed in exchange to deliver the quarterback?
By the way, my final score for the game: Auburn 42, South Carolina 28.
[Edited: I've been getting some answers to my questions, although they're pretty unreasonable and illogical.]