Friday, August 04, 2006
THE RAP SHEET
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The week in eligibility-crippling issues - legal, academic, institutional and otherwise...
First priority this week, clearing out the department of redundancy department:
On Wednesday, SMQ questioned the basis of a report claiming "numerous sources" had outed recently departed USC safety Brandon Ting, whose embattled, big shot physician father worked very closely with alleged juicer Barry Bonds, as a steroid user less than a week after he and his twin, Ryan - not yet accused of using any illegal substances - left the team under the auspices of focusing on medical school. Not that SMQ has any difficulty believing accusations of wrongdoing eminating from Los Angeles, or their not-so-subtle connections to much bigger fish to the north, but because none of the stories he's read about this contain any new information beyond a vaguely-sourced opening sentence/paragraph.
Somebody's got to go on the record here, because as it stands, the USC steroid 'scandal' is still confined essentially to a single 'report' without a corroborating quote, or any quote at all, from anyone remotely involved. No names of accusers are mentioned, no paper trail. No one in Wu Ting Clan can be reached. Carroll has a measly non-quote in only the L.A. Times version. This is the sort of story that cries for at least a tenuous grip to a credible foundation, and yet not even sketchy anonymous sources have opened their mouths anywhere in print in three days. Absent that crucial reporting factor, this one should probably have sat in the "on deck" pile until they did.
SMQ quickly addressed the fallout from the sudden dismissal of starting Oklahoma quarterback Rhett Bomar, as did Stewart Mandel and Pete Fiutak, who each fret over "the national landscape" minus this 54.2 percent-passing junior. Fiutak also, more competently, emphasized that the proportion of knuckleheadedness among college athletes is fairly representative of 18-22-year-old idiocy as group, and gets point particularly for pointing out the hyprocrisy of NCAA regulations - Jeff Samardzija and Tom Zbikowski, meet Drew Tate and Jeremy Bloom - and debunking the "good ol' boys" myth of crew-cutted youngsters who stayed late every day after a challenging study session. John David Crowe never tasered anybody and tossed them into a trunk (so far as we know), but up till a decade or two ago, excessive cash payments - and probably a few free "test drives" - for "working" at a car dealership across from campus didn't have to be very under-the-table.
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Bear Bryant's Ghost is shocked - shocked! - by Rhett Bomar's actions
In the meantime, Bomar is already being courted by the Division II Texas A&M-Commerce Lions, who have asked him to transfer if declared eligible by the NCAA. Re: Bomar's old job, Peter was right and SMQ was wrong, as Bob Stoops - after dissing Bomar and lineman J.D. Quinn for "knowingly" breaking the rules - declared former starting QB and converted receiver Paul Thompson as Bomar's replacement. The Joey Halzle Era will have to wait at least a few weeks, it appears.
As for Bomar, he joins The Rap Sheet's "Mistake Watch" with his, you know, comments to KOCCO-TV Thursday:
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Texas A&M Commerce: At least we're not Baylor
BLOWN, "way, way out of proportion," the Auburn "scandal" trumpeted by The New York Times and sociology prof James Gundlach last month, according to fellow profs Greg Kowalski and Mark Konty. Both told the AP it ain't no thang, with Konty laying it down:
Administration is already in overdrive to get class loads under control and reduce the appearance of, in academic terminology, "fishiness."
IMMORTALIZED, Ellis T. Jones, the afore-linked San Jose State cornerback who was charged Thursday with four counts of robbery, one count of attempted robbery, four counts of assault with a stun gun, two counts of false imprisonment, one count of kidnapping in the commission of a robbery and one count of second degree burglary for "allegedly [using] classified ads on craigslist to lure robbery victims" in four June burglaries. [emphasis SMQ's]
4 + 1 + 4 + 2 + 1 + 1 = 13 felony counts, math majors. And when seven of them are related to kidnapping, false imprisonment and assault with a stun gun, we are talking about the kind of felonious talent most teams only see once every couple decades. Ellis T.: singlehandedly raising the bar.
Officer Gina Tepoorten offered details to The Mercury-News:
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Ellis T. Jones always gets his man
SPURNED, former Central Michigan running back Jerry Seymour, by his old school following his request to return after his Aug. 21 sentencing for attempted assault with a dangerous weapon in a fatal 2004 beating outside a bar. Seymour was a 1,000-yard rusher in 2003, and according to the article, vowed via his attorney to "do the right thing" to fulfill his athletic and academic potential once he's free from prison. Texas A&M-Commerce, perhaps?
Click here to read Ceantral Michigan Life's complete day-by-day rundown of the July trial against Seymour and former teammate James Earl King, Jr., two of the six former Chippewas and nine people overall charged with the death of DeMarcus Graham, which remains an under-exposed story two years after the fact.
Quick hits of the week in alleged crimes, negligence and graft:
Red-Raiders.com: Tech DB suffers stab wound (from ESPN: "All of a sudden the thing escalates and Anthony gets stabbed," Leach said. Out of nowhere!)
Sports Illustrated (AP): Tennessee dismisses one player, suspends another
Sports Illustrated (AP):West Virginia's Barrett may become ineligible
FOX Sports (AP): Former Ohio State tailback Clarett hires 2 attorneys
(Related: USA Today: Clarett proves being home again isn't always good
USA Today: Wake Forest recruit accused of rape won't enroll this fall
FOX Sports: Cal QB Levy reinstated to team
(Related: CBS Sportsline: Levy can practice, but won't QB Tennessee game (Linguistic quibble from SMQ: Can 'QB' or 'quarterback' be used as a verb? This seems to work here, but not for any other position - would you ever see, for instance, 'A.J. Hawk will lineback for Packers'?))
ESPN: Air Force suspends kicker for violating school standards
Daily Herald: Utah State players face misdemeanor drug charges
ESPN: Marijuana last straw as Utah St. dismisses LB Davis, Utah State drops linebacker Downs from team
The Charlotte Observer: Whiteside, Erving will miss first three games;
Spurrier suspends pair for violating ‘university policy’ (HT: EDSBS, via Fan Blogs)
ESPN: Harrison and Harris to miss Wyoming opener
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