Thursday, November 30, 2006

What is "dirty"?

Was reading thebiglead.com the other day (if you don't read it you should...along with the daily hoops stuff and blog links, they have some great posts on topics that you won't find on other sports sites) came across their interview with Dan Wetzel.

Interesting read. One of the questions he was asked was which programs in college hoops were the dirtiest. His response was essentially that everyone pretty much operates in a gray area.

And that got us thinking. The contributors here attended a college that is home to one of the most legendery hoops programs in the land, and is usually held up as a bastion of compliance and wholesomeness. We figured it might be fun to just throw out a few things of which we are aware might have happened. Now these are just examples of things that might go on...not accusations. Although, if these examples did take place, they would be told by first person accounts. Anyway, you get the message...covering our asses OJ style.

-Our alma mater took great pride (and these NBA stars lapped up the media attention) when some of the bigger name players that left early for the NBA "came back" in the off season to finish their degrees and then attended graduation. Well, if attending the first day of class and then never showing up again, while the rest of the class members are held to a standard that if they are not present when certain guest speakers are there or if they miss 3 classes, they can not pass the summer class is "graduating"...we think that sheet of paper housed in expensive wood up on our wall has lost some of its luster.

-Blue Books. Remember those? You fill them up with whatever BS you can think of to answer essay questions on exams. It's wild when, you show up at the exam...walk up to the desk next to the instructor and pick up an empty blue book...then sit down and start the exam..WHILE a basketball player walks in hands the instructor a blue book that is already filled out...and goes home.

-Cars. Cars. Cars. Certain high profile players and two sport athletes had some phat ass rides. Weird, how guys that came from single parent low income backgrounds could have several different new rides during the year. I guess that food stipend each month is a lot bigger than we thought. We thought it was about enough to cover meals...somehow these guys stretched it into new Lexus' and Range Rovers.

-Weed. Bet selling weed out of your apartment would be a good way to finance the requisite bling necessary to look like an NBA star while on a college "salary".

-Free housing. That rent stipend would go a lot further if "friends" of the program owned the apartment you stay in...

-Control. Get picked up by the police? Been in a fight? Caused a problem out in town? One call from the higher ups in the basketball office can make that disappear in an instant. Won't even be on the police blotter.

Again, these aren't accusations. And really, they aren't examples of anything earth shattering or truly unexpected. But they are examples that even places thought of as being pristine have happenings that go on...and some are clearly institutionally condoned...that are pretty gray in color.

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