Friday, April 1, 2011

The Aftermath: Thoughts on Auburn and HBO-Gate

Can't you just add -gate to anything and make it really scandalish? Just ask "The Big Four Letter" and they'll point you to a main page that features no less than four such titled expose'. Well... I did as well and it sounds like one of the most offensive headlines I've ever read. Seriously... it's like having to take care of business on a plane after some guy who made a point to eat Chipotle on his way down to Hartsfield-Jackson takes care of his.

Yeah, you heard me... CHIPOTLE.

But back to my point, Auburn came out looking like a diamond in this this thing- not that shiny one you're thinking about. I'm talking about the coal-ish, 750 million year old, choanoflaggelate dung looking kind of diamond. I wasn't surprised when I heard current WARTIGERPLAINSMEN head coach and Tiger Prowl frontman Gene Chizik had some pretty strong words about the HBO special:

Yeah, right... Do you think that a coach that would do something like below would ever even think about cheating?

But back to my thoughts- I expected that the show wouldn't be extremely believable and these young men would come off looking like they were clamoring over sour grapes. While I was watching, I was inclined to feel that Reddick, Gray, and Ramsey may have "had an axe to grind" in the words of Andrea Kremer. I did not get that impression in the least with McClover. Not for one second.

McClover's comments were extremely compelling to say the least. Why would he implicate any of these other teams if he just wanted to get at Auburn. He could've come up with some outlandish amount comparable to the Cam reports, but he didn't. If you're gonna lie to make Auburn look bad and you're on HBO, why not go for the jugular and say, "Oh, they paid me a hundred grand too."? Probably because you aren't lying about it. If it was the truth, what's gonna happen to the Plainskitties?

Frankly, it really doesn't matter what I, or anyone else in the media or general public thinks about what's going to happen to Auburn. That's not the issue right now (Gotcha, didn't I?). It's not an issue because it sure as hell doesn't look like they're going to really get punished for anything they do, regardless of whether or not cheating actually occurred.

They've already won the national championship, so who really cares anyway. Even if the wins and trophy have to be vacated, in fifty years every Barner will sit back and think, "Yep, we won the NC that year. Best team, best player, best back packs... but they took it from us." Even if they lose a few scholarships, aren't allowed to play in a bowl for a few years, and suck for a couple more that's really not a punishment, is it? Not to me.

While Auburn is probably 1st on my current program hate list and I can't get away from desperately wanting them to get the college football electirc chair, the bigger issue is college sports in general. I want to skew this toward Auburn, but, as HBO presented, this should be a wake up call to everyone. This mess looks like the train in Back to the Future III; pegging about 86 on the speedo and just busted through the "TRACK ENDS" barracade.

I just don't know a good solution. Everything feeds the gigantic monster that the NCAA presides over. Unless there's a fundamental change in the process and the logic associated with it, this problem will continue to grow. As you can see, the NCAA can't legislate their way out of this. It's been tried. Making more rules is only going to lead to more creative and dirty ways to circumvent them. If you think you're hearing bad stuff now, wait for three more years of hyper rule mongering.

Paying them isn't the answer either, regardless of what Jason Whitlock thinks.

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