You read that right. It’s your fault. It’s my fault. It’s not the athlete’s fault.
In the last few years, it seems like the trouble that professional athletes have caused has exploded exponentially: countless DUI’s, guys getting tazed, shot, in high speed chases, and caught involved in drugs. Can’t forget about Michael Vick. And I even think I heard something about steroids in baseball the other day.
But honestly, what do you expect? These guys are ticking time bombs that we build from the moment we see talent.
From middle school, these guys are patted on the back and told how great they are and of how great they could be. In high school, they begin to get publicized in the school newspaper, hometown paper, and maybe in the big newspapers around the state. Everything they read and are told is supportive, yet adds volatility; another solder joint in the bomb. After reading about how tremendous he is, the athlete begins to believe it. Why wouldn’t he? At 17, when popularity is the only form of self-assessment, it’s easy to accept that you’re super-human.
Then come the awards. And the scholarship offers. Keep packing on the plutonium. Colleges then give out “free jobs.” The jobs that athletes don’t have to show up to, yet still receive paychecks and no one says a word. Agents and scouts, the guys who pick out talent for a living, start sending illegitimate gift packages while the athlete is still in school. Wrap that plutonium in C4.
Now set the charge by adding national media attention and praise as if he’s the second coming of Jordan, Sayers, and Ruth all rolled into one.
All the necessary elements for an incendiary device are accounted for. Now all you have to do is hand them the detonator and wait for the fireworks. Except this time, the detonator is not a little red button. It’s a lot of green Benjamin Franklins, and a fat bank account.
With the kind of money (i.e. perception of power) that a professional athlete is given, an implosion upon himself is near impossible to avoid. It’s a wonder that it doesn’t happen more often.
They can’t help it. That’s the bomb we built them to be.
Filed under: College Basketball, College Football, Fantasy Sports, MLB, NBA, NCAA, NFL, NHL, Obscure Sports, Soapbox, Thinking Out Loud | Leave a comment »