AlliedNews.com - Grove City, Pennsylvania

Sports

July 6, 2013

SPORTVIEW: Athletes' egos result in problems like Hernandez faces

OPINION — THE UNBELIEVABLE saga of pro football player Aaron Hernandez being accused of a gruesome murder of his friend makes you wonder what kind of background checks the NFL does on potential players.

Or do they even care?

Evidence is supposedly pretty strong against Hernandez in the murder of his friend Odin Lloyd. (With friends like that, who needs enemies?)

And the evidence must be strong because unlike many times when a team says it will wait until a player is proven guilty or innocent to make a move, the New England Patriots immediately cut the tight end who is one of the best at his position in the entire league.

Every year we see players who were troublesome in high school or college get into the NFL, declaring that they have cleaned up their acts. Yet down the road, something happens.

While obviously many of the incidents don’t involve murder, there are other crimes that occur. Or there are very bad decisions.

It was disappointing for everyone to hear about the stabbing of Farrell native Mike Adams, an offensive lineman with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Adams, a former Ohio State star who convinced the Steelers to draft him despite reportedly testing positive for marijuana just before the NFL combine, was injured in a robbery attempt.

Being assaulted in a robbery isn’t his fault. But the problem was that it was in the wee hours of the morning when he shouldn’t have been in that kind of situation.

Sometimes bad choices affect these pro athletes. Hopefully, Adams will fully recover and become a key member of the Steelers offensive line again. But it’s not likely that another problem involving him will be overlooked so he has to really prove himself again.

Part of the problem with athletes is their egos, which are big to say the least. They seem to feel they can do anything they want to do.

That’s why you see them being busted for drunk driving – when they easily could hire a designated driver – or getting in trouble in nightclubs at an hour when they shouldn’t be there.

That’s why you see a Ben Roethlisberger riding a motorcycle without a helmet or a Plaxico Burress carrying a gun into a New York City nightclub and shooting himself in the leg.

Part of the problem for some is their upbringing. Some of these athletes come from poverty and instant money can bring instant trouble. Others grew up in bad home situations or were involved in gangs.

I’ll have a story soon on former Sharon High star Marlin Jackson, who overcame a less-than-stellar home life as a kid to become a star NFL player and a stand-up family guy who today works hard to help young people through his foundation.

Those are the kinds of stories that we need more of, rather than stories of someone like Aaron Hernandez who apparently has thrown away everything and may be headed for life in prison.

You would hope that every young athlete will read the story about Hernandez and the consequences of not following rules. But we all know that won’t happen.

Egos are too big for that.

 

1
Text Only
Sports
  • THE CHECKERED FLAG: Up and down week for Sodeman

    LAST FRIDAY I headed south to add I-77 Raceway Park to my track attended list, which made for 162nd track all-time.  I-77 is located south of Ripley, West Virginia just off Interstate 77.  This season, I-77 moved from the crowded Saturday night line-up to Friday night racing and teamed up with Ohio Valley Speedway.  I-77 normally runs Super Late Models, Semi-Late Models, E-Mods, Mod Lites, and 4-Cylinder Mini Stocks.  With the Sprint Cars on the schedule, I decided to make the trip and they were joined by the Super Late Models, Semi-Late Models, and E-Mods.

    July 21, 2014

  • THE CHECKERED FLAG: Blaney still running hot on area tracks

    LAST THURSDAY I headed southwest to Atomic Speedway, formerly known as KC Raceway.  The 1/3-mile high-banked dirt oval is located an hour south of Columbus, Ohio just off Route 23 near Alma.  It was my first visit in a couple years.  A big crowd turned out on Independence Day Eve as the All Star Circuit of Champions Sprint Cars were back along with the Super Late Models and E-Mods.  The Ohio Speedweek event the week before drew a huge 62-car field and Thursday’s event drew 33.
    After an astounding Speedweek winning the final three races and four of six, Dale Blaney returned to the track that he last got defeated at.  On the Speedweek show, Jac Haudenschild made the winning pass of Blaney, while Blaney finished second.  Last Thursday, even a seventh starting spot didn’t derail Blaney for long.  The Hartford, Ohio racer worked his way to the front and made the winning pass of race-long leader Tim Shaffer on lap 16.  One caution three laps from the finish was all that slowed Blaney’s run to another $5,000 payday.  It was Blaney’s fourth straight win, sixth of the season, and all-time leading 105th of his career with the All Stars.

    July 13, 2014

  • EXTRA INNINGS: Bucs fans loved Burnett, but let's leave him in Philly

    THERE IS NO no doubt that A.J. Burnett made a huge impact during his two seasons with the Pirates.
    When he arrived in the spring of 2012, so did hope for fans wearied by teams that hadn’t seen a winning record in 20 summers.
    While he certainly did not turn the tide by himself, he turned the wheel. His swagger sometimes didn’t play well with management, but even the Buc brass had to appreciate the new culture that Burnett helped his teammates create.

    July 9, 2014

  • NCAA Football: Rock 6-1 after 17-3 win over Cal U

    Slippery Rock University rode a length-of-the-field scoring drive by its offense and a goal-line stand by its No. 1-ranked defense late in the first half of action Saturday to a 17-3 win over 14th-ranked visiting California (Pa.).

    October 19, 2011

  • steez pc.jpg NFL: Steelers top Jags as Mendenhall makes return

    Mike Tomlin isn’t ready to say the Pittsburgh Steelers are back. Not after watching his team sleepwalk through the second half against Jacksonville on Sunday.

    October 19, 2011 1 Photo

  • wheldon, dan pc.jpg IndyCar Racing: Crash takes Wheldon’s life

    Every race car driver heads onto the track understanding this race could be the last and hoping it won’t be. On Sunday, IndyCar drivers got a harsh reminder when the worst happened to one of their own.

    October 19, 2011 3 Photos

  • pens pc.jpg NHL: Sabres beat Penguins 3-2

    The Buffalo Sabres have had trouble with the Pittsburgh Penguins whether Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin play or not.

    October 19, 2011 1 Photo

  • canadiens logo pc.jpg NHL Quick glance: Montreal at Pittsburgh

    A breakdown of the National Hockey League game Thursday night between the Pittsburgh Penguins and visiting Montreal Canadiens.

    October 19, 2011 4 Photos

  • High School Highlights: Oct. 19, 2011

    A look at the last few days in local high school fall sports action.

    October 19, 2011

  • washington, ron pc.jpg Leading Off: Oct. 19, 2011

    News and notes from the local, regional and national sports scene.

    October 19, 2011 5 Photos

Featured Ads
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide