Time for athletes to be better people
There was a time, and maybe it still happens, where if you left a Wichita State baseball game a little bit early you'd find a couple scholarship athletes shagging foul balls in the parking lot.
If the game was a rout, you'd catch the starters. Standing around chatting each other up in the comfort of their tennis shoes, their metal spikes long-since stashed away in the dugout, chasing down pop flies and being college kids even though they were heroes to the young masses. Keep in mind this was the early '90s, when WSU made three consecutive trips to the College World Series.
Couldn't tell you what he does now, but when I found Shocker second baseman Joey Jackson out there once and he signed the torn-off back of my cardinal-red striped popcorn box, I went white in the face. I kept that flimsy piece of cardboard for almost 15 years before it practically disintegrated. I spent my childhood adoring those kinds of athletes. They allowed for the purest of memories.
But as time goes on we're forced to recognize heroes of sport and otherwise as mortals, capable of all the rage and evil in the world like anyone else.
And the past few months they've gone berserk.
Dimwittedness and wrongdoing is at record production. Running backs professional and college knocking out females on video. Adrian Peterson a heroic block of granite to Oklahoma football fans issuing half-apologies in the wake of an official indictment for the abuse of his 4-year-old. The NFL leadership handling such cases like buffoons.
Oklahoma State erased an incoming freshman from its roster following three armed-felony charges. Oklahoma has juggled PR bombs after dealing with the eligibility of several players involved with domestic abuse cases. The country's reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston is ramping up idiocy levels, increasingly anxious, apparently, to assume the role of most NFL athletes.