Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Terrelle Pryor picks tUOS! Whatever, dude...

After drawing out the recruiting process to the point utter ridiculousness, Terrelle Pryor finally announced what school he was going to attend. His choice?

The "University of Ohio State." (His words, not mine...)

That Pryor picked tUOS is just another in a feather in CheatyPants McSweaterVest's already overly feathered cap.

It being a month past signing day, fans of all the schools involved (Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State, Oregon) were to the point of no longer giving a shit what school the kid chose, just as long as he made a decision. I'm not cheesed off Pryor didn't pick the Wolverines. Far from it, in fact. I'm fucking glad I don't have to hear or read anymore stories about an 18 year old kid milking his time in the spotlight.

From altercations with fans after basketball games, the rumormongering over totally phantom recruiting violations, to breathless daily headlines in the Detroit fishwraps about Pryor pandering to the scary recruitniks, has there been a more glaring example of what is wrong with recruiting? With college sports in general?

In my mind, the idea of adults making a very lucrative living scouting and charting high school kids, in some cases following a recruit's exploits since grade school, is disturbing. There being fans so desperate for this information that they are willing to pay for it? That's not just disturbing, it's fucked up.

It's funny that two stories exposing the ugly underbelly of major college sports (something we do our damnedest to ignore), the Pryor recruitment and the attendant media coverage, along with the Ann Arbor News' "expose" regarding the academic policies of Michigan athletes, coincides with the two best days of the sports calender. The couch potato heaven known as the 1st round games of the NCAA Tournament.

I'm not sure what I'm trying to express in that last paragraph, other than to say we place way too much importance college sports. Let alone the excessive pressure on kids barely old enough to vote.

Hell, I'm as guilty as anyone. Like most of us who grew up in this state during the Schembechler years, I treat Michigan football as a life or death event. It's silly, as I never had the opportunity to attend U of M. But I care deeply anyway. Hell, we're all hypocrites when it comes to big time college sports. I want Michigan and Michigan State to win...Just don't tell me how.

Which is my way of saying none of this ever going to change. Too many people care much too deeply about what school an 18 year old athlete attends. More often than not, all the angst is in regard to a school they never attended in the first place.

When it's put that way, you realize all the attention given to Terrelle Pryor's announcement is God damn absurd. And more than a little scary...

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