Welcome to Wednesday, the first of May… it’s officially grilling season (unless you live in California, where it’s always that time). Here’s today’s soundtrack; if you don’t know why, then… well… keep reading.
After a weekend filled with excitement and disappointment, it’s a bit of a quiet mood at tBBC headquarters. We like baseball, and know that OSU sports are amazing even if not the “got to be on television” variety, but I’d be lying if I didn’t confess that there’s a bit of a let down these days. Ah well… only two songs possible for today’s soundtrack. Onward.
The offseason brings us another variation from the format of your midweek news and notes, as a couple of big stories have dominated the college sports landscape. That being said, it’s not like I’m going to deprive you of your Wednesday motivational tunes.
Lack Of Institutional Control
On Tuesday, the NCAA finally sent their Notice of Allegations to the Hurricanes, after a week that saw the folks from Indianapolis as the well focused center of national ridicule. We’d be wondering what was taking so long in this process, given that the NCAA had been “involved” in the investigation for over two years- turns out that the time in question had been spent violating the NCAA’s own principals and going against the advice of their legal counsel in their conversations with Nevin Shapiro.
In addition to paying the attorney who was questioning Shapiro as a part of his financial issues, the folks at the NCAA also provided him with a “burner” cell phone to contact them and financial resources to his prison account. Again, not the best idea for an organization who prides themselves on holding people accountable because the “should have known” what to do and dings them for not doing it.
The fallout was immediate- NCAA folks terminated or “resigned”, and folks calling for NCAA president Mark Emmert’s head, which, given the recent friends that he’s made across the nation, completely seems within reason.
The news of the “injustice” done by the NCAA to the fine folks in Miami ended up finding many fans in an interesting place- turning to Da’ U as their white knight in the fight against the evils of Emmert’s staff. Tuesday’s official response by University President Donna Shalala continued to create the dissonance- she is right that the NCAA has overstepped themselves extensively, but seems to forget that the University’s representatives were involved things that led them to receiving what many say is the “lack of institutional control” label in their Notice. Read More
So here’s the thing.
The story of the day yesterday was the first episode of All Access, a behind the scenes look at the Buckeye program under the new regime.
But… in a moment of weakness, I DVR’d it And watched it.
And loved ever second.
How can you hate quotes like “Abso-smurfly”, “Bozo the freakin’ clown”, “I’m glad you’re a Buckeye, bro…”, “I like coaching you…” and other admonitions to play “hungry” and “angry”.
And the precision of the offensive staff’s work, the pride that Coach Mariotti puts into his time with the team, and the focus and plan that Coach Meyer is instilling into the team… it’s a really good piece. If you missed it and don’t mind the spoilers, the gang at LGHL have a really good review with picture pages and everything.
I’d be really excited about this, to be honest, if all things were equal. Given the bad PR that my favorite program received over the past few years for numerous self inflicted wounds, it’s great to get excited about OSU football again- and to see a national response (including Southern Cal and Clemson recruits commenting on it) that was pretty positive.
But, I’ll be honest- It’s still hard for me to not be wary about this series. You kick a dog and reach to pet him, he’ll wince and cower even if he lets you stroke his head again. Given what we know about ESPN’s agenda (Entertainment Sports Programming Network), it safe to see that they are interested in a narrative of redemption up until the point that they bang the drums marking a fall from grace.
Just watch the history- 2002 upset their narrative, and then the 2003 Clarett story was a bottom. The 2006 season’s coverage was the apex of good vibes, and then this past year seems to be yet another trough in their coverage- again, a story that Ohio State wrote for itself, but one that got presented over and over and over again on the largest stage while others were way way off Broadway in Coral Gables and Columbia and Chapel Hill.
So- we’ll watch (yup) and see. And, if nothing else, this will give us the chance to celebrate the splendor and power of an Ohio State team on a very particular mission.
Buckle Buckeye up.
There has been much speculation about what was going to happen to the Penn State football program and it all came to fruition this morning in a huge way. The question isn’t will they recover, it’s can they? Let’s take a look at their punishment for covering up the crimes of a former assistant that needs not be named.
The quiet of this week around Buckeye Nation provides a moment of peace prior to August’s chaos of fall camp and Olympic dreams. It’s completely different than July of 2011… and I don’t hear many complaining.
What I do hear, though, are the thunder and raging winds still swirling from last week’s Freeh Report. Both the national news coverage and the responses from Lion Faithful and PSU alums are clamoring- and, like what passes for dialogue these days, neither side are really listening to the other. Civility seems to be yet another casualty of this situation- although, it can be argued that this merely highlights the fact that it’s been dead for a long while.
So, this week’s SBP will take a look at some of the interesting articles and reflections on this almost indescribable set of circumstances. The view we’ll be taking will be a bit farther out- looking not at the particulars but at the “culture” that’s seems to have been on everyone’s mind lately… although, I’m not sure we’re looking deep enough.
If you’re tired of this story, I hope you’ll at least stick around for the commentary after the jump- there’s a lot to learn and think about from this, even if you’re not Nittany.
Responses to the Freeh Report
Everything about the crimes and the cover up is horrific, so please keep that in mind while you are celebrating Penn State’s coming reckoning. When you pop the champagne tonight in jubilation, try to remember that children were raped and grown men in charge of leading young men allowed it to happen. Then try to think of any reason why a human being should ever be happy that this could happen to a child, let alone children.
Don’t let football blind you, because that’s what Penn State did. They willingly let themselves lose sight of of what actually happened to these children, and then somehow found a way to ignore it. Hate Penn State for what happened here all you want, but don’t forget why you feel the way you do. And it should have nothing to do with football.
The Greggster must have gotten what he was looking for, because his next comments on the matter were… get this.. a complete change in tone that went against what others were saying. Read More