breaking the rules…

10 Apr

so many violations. so many scandals. and just another typical week in sports. its been a few weeks since we found out about the saints bounty scandal and only just a few days ago we find out about baylor university’s violations and impermissible recruitment of many of its star athletes.

to give a quick recap.

after careful investigation, the nfl found that the new orleans saints were in paying money and offering incentives to their players to knock players from other teams out of the games and injure them as well. obviously, no one really knows what went on but there is significant proof of these incentives and completely wrong acts. the nfl has since suspended the head coach, sean payton , for the entire season and suspended their general manager and one of the assistant coaches. not only were the bounty activities wrong, but people in the saints organization failed to report what they had seen and heard. many of the penalties could have been prevented had someone just said something but instead they let it go.

the baylor thing is a little more fresh. an athletic department that has had arguably their best athletic year in their college’s history is now being shown in another light. their violations have to do with the recruitment of their men’s and women’s basketball players. impermissible texts and visits have been found to have occurred by both coaching staffs. yes, both baylor’s men’s and women’s teams have been extremely successful this year. and the women’s team has the best player in the country, brittney griner. while the baylor athletic department has imposed some penalties on their own, the ncaa could offer further penalties. for now, we just sit and wait.

there is no question that what the saints and baylor athletic department did was wrong but the question is where do we go from here?

let me say first that these are completely separate issues. imposing harm on someone is very different from improper recruitment of athletes. yet, the coaches of both teams broke the rules. the saints could have in fact caused injuries to people and baylor might have unfairly won a championship. how is it fair for teams who break the rules to win and be successful while other teams can do it without breaking the rules? trust me, teams that don’t break the rules can win fair and square.

rules are basically what sports are based on. if there were no rules, then there could be no winners or losers. if there were no rules then we wouldn’t really have anything to measure our sports and our athletes with. so when will it stop? when will coaches, players, and fans realize that by breaking the rules they are damaging the perception of sports?

it’s not like these are the first rule violations that we have seen. the ncaa has come down hard on some of the sports and athletic programs that have broken rules (usc, ohio state, uconn etc.). i’d need a completely new post to discuss the ncaa and their varied penalties and punishments so i’ll stop here. but again, the ncaa, just like roger goodell, has the opportunity to set a precedent that will greatly affect the sports world.

im not going to tell you what i think the nfl and roger goodell or the ncaa should do because frankly, they have their own set of rules. the bigger issue here is why? why do people feel the need to break rules that are so fundamental to the world of sports?

i don’t know how we make people follow the rules but i do think that the more we talk about it and the more we bring these issues to the forefront, the less likely people will be to break the rules. it’ll be interesting to watch and see how this year’s saints team responds and what the ncaa chooses to do with the baylor athletic department over the next few weeks.

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One Response to “breaking the rules…”

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