Well, I have returned from my mini vacation. Re-energized to bring you weekly columns and updates from the mind of yours truly. The NFL season starts in less than a week and College Football got started last night with a few interesting games of note. Utah continued its win streak to 15. South Carolina got their first win over NC State. And Boise State started their run for a shot at the BCS with a win over Oregon. But lost in all that was the unsportsmanlike thuggery of Oregon running back LeGarrette Blount (see above).
The NCAA has encouraged a pregame hand shake before the start of games this season. Fifteen players from both teams did this, including Blount. After the very sloppy game, which saw Oregon’s offense produce only fifteen total yards in the first half, Blount was approached by Boise’s linebacker Byron Hout. Hout proceeded to touch Blount’s shoulder pad and say something to him. Without hesitation, Blount turned and punched Hout right on the chin, bringing him down. Now if that wasn’t bad enough, Blount went after a teammate who was pulling him away from the Boise players that wanted a piece of him. Blount made things worse by wanting to “Ron Artest” his way into the stands to go after some knucklehead fans. Blount had to be restrained by police, security and Oregon staff back to the locker room.
Of course realizing he made a terrible mistake, he apologized right after the game,
“I should have handled that situation a lot better than I did,” he said. “I apologize. We will never have a game like this again. … The game, as it went on, just got more frustrating and more frustrating for me in general. I shouldn’t have said anything. I shouldn’t have done anything.”
It becomes a case of should have, would’ve, could have. You did make a mistake, a stupid one, and now you will pay. Today Oregon suspended him for the entire season. Was the punishment just? Yes I think it was. You don’t react to an opposing team like that, no matter what. Get off the field, get on the bus and get out. If that is all he would’ve done was punch Byron Hout, then he wouldn’t have been suspended for the year, I don’t think. But the fact that he made things worse by confronting and trying to go after fans warranted the season suspension. The knucklehead in him came out and now he has to pay for it. I don’t buy that the Boise player should be punished to. That’s what some players do on the winning team. They will say things and it’s up to the losing team to conduct themselves in a respectable fashion. Hout should not be punished, but I’m sure that he was told to go about it a different way from now on.
Blount has officially ruined his season and Oregon might not recover from this loss or incident. It’s a shame that this is how the Football season starts, but lets be honest, this probably would’ve happened at some point. The fact that we have to understand is this doesn’t happen very often, but when it does the punishment has to be swift and tough so it can possibly be stopped in the future.