I know I owe you, and America really, the usual Wednesday get to know a football player segment, but today is going to be a very rare double post day around here. A day like this is sort of like seeing a bald eagle, Kodiak bear and a salmon sitting around in the wild discussing whether or not the Holy Roman Empire was neither Holy, nor Roman or an Empire. So I advise taking a picture so people will actually believe you.
I felt it important to acknowledge the dismissal of highly touted wide receiver Patrick Patterson from the Ole Miss football team, mainly to give me a therapeutic release of sorts. While I suppose I shouldn't stray too far into the wailing and gnashing of teeth category, after all, Patterson wasn't anything special his freshman year (12 catches, 180 yards and one touchdown), but without him, the Ole Miss receiving corps with game experience now looks like this:
Guh. That's a razor-thin group with not much talent and experience. Combined, those four IN THEIR CAREERS (two seniors and two sophomores) have caught 52 passes and five touchdowns. So actually, the loss of Patterson includes the loss of 19% of caught footballs in games and 17% of caught touchdown passes in games. And given that Ole Miss' tight ends have discovered the scientific properties for becoming invisible to quarterbacks, it matters a little more than I originally thought it would.
(Brief pause to yell at no one in particular.)
However, there is good news if you're an Ole Miss fan. It is doubtful that Ole Miss will have a quarterback this fall that would be able to successfully throw to wide receivers anyway, so all we really need out of this group is some guys who can block well in the running game. Which Patterson could do when he tried...
(Second brief pause to shake fist and yell at the sky.)
So what does this mean for Patterson? If my mathematical skills are correct, he should have four years left with which to play three years of college football, meaning he probably would not have to transfer to a I-AA (What's the real name for it? FBS? FCS? YMCA?) school since a redshirt year could cover his sitting out for a year due to transferring. The only issue would be do teams at the I-A level want to take a chance on an allegedly talented guy who clearly has an attitude/work ethic problem (and perhaps a fondness for certain substances frowned upon by coaches). If college football has taught us anything, the answer to that question is YES THEY DO.
Even Houston Nutt once gave a scholarship to former Florida player who used the credit card of a women killed six months earlier in a car crash. A dismissal for the standard "violation of team rules" isn't going to scare anyone away. Patterson could have been sitting on JaMarcus Russell's front porch on Monday, enjoying the payoffs of the Purple Drank, and his phone would still ring. This is college football. Unless a player is a felon...wait...unless a player is too old to play after getting out of jail, he'll get a second chance. And as fans, we rightfully mock other teams when something like this happens, then say something about "this is a good environment for him" when said talented player transfers to our team. It is a cycle that will never change.
So, goodbye, Patrick Patterson. We barely knew ye. And if you ever catch a touchdown pass against Ole Miss, so help me, you will find the police beating on your door to ask you about the Purple Drank you didn't know you had.