Crime/Corruption

If Chip Kelly was a student-athlete, he’d be out of a job

Sigh, if there’s a greater hypocrisy in America than the college sports megapoly, it’s hard to know what it is. Whether it’s the fiction that great athletic ability means you have the ability to succeed in college or that tuition is fair payment for starring in a multi-billion dollar enterprise and risking a career ending injury, it’s a rotten system from top to bottom.

Nowhere, though, is the hypocrisy greater than with coaching. Kids get paid nothing (unless they go to USC or Auburn) while coaches earn millions. Kids are thrown off the team for failing a test for pot, while a coach who wrecks his motorcyle drunk with his mistress on the back gets another million dollar gig as quick as you can say “alumni.” And of course, the ultimate hypocrisy: When kids are caught cheating they have to serve their sentence, while coaches are allowed to flee to the pros, which is to cheating coaches what Brazil is British bank robbers.

Terrelle Pryor, former Ohio State quarterback, was suspended by the NCAA, but still had to serve his five game suspension once he got to the pros. Think about that for a moment. What if you graduated and got a job, but found out that your new employer was taking your unpaid student parking fines out of your paycheck? Doesn’t seem fair, does it? It’s not. It’s probably not even legal, although Pryor decided not to bring suit. Unfortunately, if you’re a professional football player, there’s basically one real employer and it does no good to piss him off. Better to shut up and sit down.

Of course, the NFL does the same for coaches that cheat, right? Surely they have to sit out the penalties they brought on their schools.

Uh-uh. From ESPN, the University of Oregon is getting sanctioned for recruiting violations under former coach Chip Kelly.

PORTLAND, Ore. — The University of Oregon proposed a self-imposed two-year probation and the loss of a scholarship for three years because of possible recruiting violations involving the Ducks’ football program.

The university released documents late Monday that included a proposed summary disposition from September which discusses the violations and characterizes at least one as “major.” The contents of the documents were first reported by KATU television in Portland.

Of course, Kelly is manning up and sticking with the Oregon program during this time of duress, right? Surely, he’s going to stand by those kids whose eyes he looked into and promised he’d be just like a second father.

Uh uh. Kelly has taken a job with the Philadelphia Eagles. Just like Pete Carroll, he got out of college football one step ahead of the posse and made his way to the safety of the pros.
Not that the posse, in the form of the NCAA, was chasing very hard.

A few years from now both Carroll and Kelly will be fired. After all, the old joke is that NFL stands for “not for long” if you’re a coach. When they do, college football will welcome them back with smiles and hugs, just like it did Nick Saban and Bobby Petrino.

If you’re a kid and you’re caught cheating, your college career is over and penalties can follow you into your next job. If you’re a coach, maybe you just need to leave town for a while until all the kerfluffle dies down. Wink. Wink.