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Type in any old news site and you’ll see a pretty nice laundry list of things not going right. Hell, look out your window, you might see it. But every now and then, things go the way they’re supposed to and for the most part, we look the other way.
Not here and not now concerning Georgia running back Todd Gurley. For all the hell the NCAA takes about doing this or that wrong in the court of eternally entitled and sensitive public opinion, they get it right too. Problem is? No one really takes much notice.
As we all know, Gurley is now out until Nov. 15 against Auburn due to an NCAA investigation that found that he did sign his name for money against the rules.
The NCAA, which gets hammered for being out of touch and not adapting to the times by 20-somethings on social media and sports media members, should get a high five from that backside-hurt group for this one.
Gurley, as has been noted, did something wrong. Whether you agree with the rules or laws or not, they’re in place, you know them, and breaking them leads to a consequence. That’s pretty much a life rule from age 3-years-old on up.
The NCAA could have said it was a hard and fast suspension and he wasn’t coming back this season. They didn’t. The NCAA investigated however it is that they investigate (note: a television show based on NCAA investigations would be a great watch … call it The First 48 … hours, days, months, or whatever… because we have no timetable on such things).
The NCAA listened to what apparently was an open and honest Gurley about what happened; took stock of the situation; and decided it was reasonable to let him finish out his collegiate career on the field with his teammates trying to win games and titles.
And don’t bother with the “but … Jameis Winston and Johnny Manziel and … blah, blah, blah.” In the Gurley case, there was admittance and apparently proof. That’s how the real world works.
Years ago, I ran into this woman and talked with her awhile. She was making sandwiches. Like, hundreds of them. I asked her what she was doing. She said that every weekend, she and a few fellow church members would take these basic lunch meat sandwiches and snacks and just go downtown to known hangouts for homeless families and pass them out.
There was nothing to it other than that, no pomp and circumstance, hash tags, or decals for cars to “bring awareness to” something. It was just a group of people who made sandwiches, put them in a cooler, and passed them out to people who had literally nothing but the clothing on their backs.
She said it gave her perspective.
The immediate reaction when people saw that the NCAA was giving Gurley community service was, “Oh, they’re treating him like a criminal!”
Trust me, Gurley isn’t putting on a brightly colored jump suit and plucking rotten food and garbage off of highway medians.
Hell, go hang out with this woman and distribute food to the homeless. There’s a lot of perspective to be gained there, and if done right, Gurley might come away with way more than scoring touchdowns against Florida will ever give.
The outrage over the whole Gurley situation has been an ongoing schism between what people think athletes deserve as opposed to what they’re allowed to get. I don’t have the answer on all of that, but I’ll tell you right now where it stands, and Gurley broke the line it stands on, and owned up to it like a mature adult from all understanding.
Georgia will appeal the suspension because Georgia is looking out for its student athlete and rightfully so. It’d look odd if the school didn’t. Hopefully, it won’t appeal the community service part … rather, voluntarily join him.
In the end, everyone wins. A practical punishment was handed down after a rule was broken and it wasn’t fatal to a college player’s season. The stories of universal win aren’t always many. For once here, they are