Wednesday, March 09, 2011

One Final Semi-Serious Note on This Jim Tressel Business Before the Cheap Jokes Become Commonplace Around Here

Jim Tressel is cheat and liar, but he is also your typical college coach.  He broke the rules in a significant fashion, perhaps not for the first time, and got caught, just like many coaches before him and currently at major programs have.  What is most interesting about this violation is that it was committed by the coach of the signature program in a conference that has long looked down its nose on top of its mountain at other conferences for their rule-breaking, questionable recruiting practices and academic standards (COUGHCOUGH, SEC).

Northerners looking down upon their Southern brethren is nothing new.  It's been going on since the founding of our country, hell, more than likely when the first town in the South was established while nothing but colonies and frontier existed (IT'S SO LACKING IN SOPHISTICATION.  WHAT IS THAT MADE OF, PINE?  HOW POOR ARE YOU?).  And the judging and elitism only increased after the Civil War, which, to be fair, was probably deserved for a period of time after that.  However, what so many of our Northern friends throughout history have never considered, or maybe never believed, is that there are just as many racists, bigots, morons, good people, bad people, smart people and talented people within their region as ours.  Minus our overwhelming number of eccentrics, which are strictly a product of the culture created in the South and cannot be matched by any area of the country (And no, dirty hippies do not count, West Coast), we've both got a lot of the same people and problems.

Tuesday, Ohio State and Big Ten Commissioner Jim Delany, king of the mountaintop, learned just that.  Their rhetoric of true student-athletes, academics and boastful commitment to not operating in gray areas was swept away.  What they've discovered is that they're no different from the conference they've always assumed to be morally superior than.  They cheat, bend and break rules and turn a blind eye to things they know are wrong all in the name of winning, just as schools in the conference that says "If you ain't cheatin', you ain't tryin'" do.

More than likely, Ohio State has always operated this way, as indicated by their NCAA D-I-leading 375 secondary violations from 2000-May 2009.  I doubt Jim Tressel woke up one day and decided that this day was the first day of the Jim Tressel regime that chooses which rules it wants to follow ("And I'm going to start eating EGG YOLKS!").  But as of yesterday, all of college football knows Tressel, Ohio State and the Big Ten are down in the stinking mud with everyone else.  And Jim Delany, whenever you're ready, boss, you can start climbing down your mountain.

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