National Columnist

Hate Mail: Timing is everything; Ray Lewis, Joe Paterno comparisons?


So the Lizzy Seeberg story happened. I mean, it really happened. She really did accuse a Notre Dame football player of sexual assault, school police really did do next to nothing for 10 days, at which point she really did commit suicide. That happened.

And I wrote about it before the national title game. Why? Because the player she accused was going to play in that game. And people should know her story.

Lots of Notre Dame fans hated it, obviously. Breaks my heart. Let's do Hate Mail.

From: Michael Stabile

Just read your column on Lizzy Seeberg. I will never read another of your columns. I followed the case closely and one thing was apparent: The Seeberg family did not want continued publicity. You have done them a great disservice.

Wrong. I heard from a family member who read that column. I was asked not to print the email they wrote me, so I will not. But I heard. And you're completely wrong. Shame on you for trying to use their pain as your weapon.

From: Brendan

You wrote: "Don't write about [Lizzy Seeberg] now, for God's sake. A few days before the BCS title game? These unsubstantiated allegations from Aug. 31, 2010? Not right. Not fair." Congrats on ignoring these thoughts and writing a story bringing back bad memories for the family in an attempt to further your career!

The family was OK with that story, Brendan. What is with you Domers presuming to speak for Lizzy Seeberg's relatives? You people have no shame.

P.S. As for my motivations, my career is already pretty damn far if you haven't noticed. Though my readership in Guam is lagging ...

From: Joshua Levi

You only wrote about Lizzy Seeberg's tragedy because you want to see the sports world burn. You are exactly like Bane in the Dark Knight Rises. You abused Lizzy Seeberg's story so you can make Notre Dame burn to the ground. Why did you write this three days before National Championship game?

I could've written it two years ago. Would you have approved? Of course not. You would have hated it two years ago, you would have hated it two years from now, and you hated it when I actually did write it. Think, dummy. Please ... think.

From: Bud

Why does this article suddenly appear a few days before Notre Dame plays Alabama, over a sad situation that occurred 2½ years ago? I smell something very foul ...

Try a toothbrush. I wrote it when I wrote it because the player accused was about to play in Notre Dame's biggest game in decades. Jeez, Domers. Not a lot of deep thinkers, huh?

From: Michael Anastasion

Great column about the sexual assault. You just became my favorite sportswriter.

But the timing! And the way I advanced my career! And ... Bane!

From: Jesse Pisoni

Why would you write this two years later just because Notre Dame has the spotlight? It's not a legit article just because a supposed innocent girl may or may not have been sexually assaulted. Maybe I'm missing something, so feel free to let me know what you think it might be.

"Supposed innocent girl ..." Jesse Pisoni, you're missing a good many things. Compassion, empathy, common sense, possibly even intelligence. Hope that helps.

From: Jack

Do you have the courage of your convictions to tell Richard Lollar's mother that you firmly believe Ray Lewis is not guilty of his murder?

Well Jack, I already did. See, I wrote that story on a fairly prominent website -- if not in Guam -- and I signed my name to it. With my picture. What do you want me to do, knock on his mother's door and make a speech? Don't be stupid. Fight the urge.

From: Andrew Trill

With regards to Ray Lewis, imagine if his murder happened toward the end of his years and then imagine Paterno's coverup toward the beginning of his. Kind of like how you perceive Tom Brady's winning early and then struggling in the playoffs to win vs. Peyton Manning's struggling early then winning late. Oh how perception changes.

Your first sentence confused me, but then I read your second sentence and realized it's not me -- it's you. You're insane.

From: Kirk Luba

Just read your column about Ray Lewis -- and now I bet you almost, ALMOST see how the Penn State community believes in Joe Paterno. Substitute 20 years with 60 years, and Ray's lifetime of word, thought and deed with Joe's. Add that Joe is not just an athlete, but a beloved family member to us.

No, I don't see it. There's no comparison. Jan. 31, 2000, was a single night of mayhem that remains shrouded in mystery. Paterno was told by a friend of something troubling, something WRONG, involving a grown man and a child in his program's shower -- and for 10 years he worked and slept and ate and lived with the knowledge that the man, Jerry Sandusky, was still free. Joe Paterno wasn't bothered by the possibility that the number of child victims might be growing ... which it was. Don't come here with your nasty Kool-Aid and expect me to drink it.

From: Chuck Marzen

As a Baltimore guy I've spent a long time defending Ray Lewis to my Steeler-fan friends. And I must admit, I threw Ben Rapelisburger taunts right back at them. Hopefully, I'll keep your article in mind next time an athlete is caught up in something shady and give them the benefit of the doubt before pronouncing judgment.

I do believe you're the mythical perfect reader, Chuck. You are real, right? I'd hate to find out that you're one of those damn Spam-bots.

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Chuck Marzen, this better not be you. Don't do this to me.

From: Jeff DiVincenzo

Sorry Doyel, the SEC has absolutely nothing to do with Alabama winning the national championship. Your story comes crumbling to the ground as soon as you look at how Florida was embarrassed by Louisville. Or Clemson over LSU. You are part of the problem with college football. You're the reason we have to listen to every SEC fan act like they won a national championship last night.

I'm the reason? I know I'm influential, but that influential? Woohoo! The hell with Guam.

From: Robert Bartolini

Robert Griffin III is a man. He is the only one besides his doctor who knows how he feels. The doctor said he could play and Griffin said he could play -- so that's it. I guess personal responsibility just didn't fit with this column.

If Mike Shanahan has absolutely no say in the matter, as you imply, what's he doing on the sideline? Why is he even there? Maybe Shanahan is just a figurehead, like the king of Guam.

From: Joe

If Shanahan pulls RG3 when Redskins are leading early and Seattle goes on to win, you're writing a column about how stupid Shanahan is for removing the hot hand.

I don't deal in hypotheticals, Joe. Hypothetically you're a moron -- but lucky for you, I don't deal in hypotheticals. So you might not be a moron.

From: Joe, again

Mike Shanahan is selfish because he wanted to win the game? Last time I checked, that is why coaches are hired -- to win games.

Shanahan put winning that game ahead of the very real risk that his quarterback could suffer a career-altering, maybe even career-ending injury. And then the injury happened. So what I'm saying, Joe, is that the hypothetical has been proven -- you really are a moron.

From: Darrel Sapp

I called you out when you originally wrote the article. I'm calling you out again. You need to apologize for your comments about Junior Seau and his selfishness for committing suicide. With the findings of brain damage, we can safely assume that he wasn't in the right frame of mind. It must be nice living atop your pedestal where you can rain down judgment without full facts.

To this day, Seau's mother and children are devastated. I was thinking of them when I wrote what I wrote. You go ahead and keep thinking of the one guy whose pain ended the day he killed himself -- I'll remember those he left behind.

From: Brent White

I heard you talking up Alabama on Birmingham radio this morning. Bama didn't even win the conference last year. They lost at home each of the last two years. Had Les Miles not made several coaching blunders, LSU would have beaten them again. Furthermore, five teams last year and two teams this year had to lose in the last couple of weeks for them to even get a shot at the title. Colt McCoy's injury in 2009 also speaks to Bama's luck.

Maybe you should obsess less about Alabama and do more work more as a city councilman, Brent. Looked you up.

From: Adam R. Bengtson, Wichita State

Please stop writing.

I'm sorry, Adam. My words too big for you? Here you go, little guy: Cut your teeth on this one. Come back when you're ready for some big-boy writing.

From: Jeff G.

Why do you have the right to drone on and on and continue to post your hate mail and belittle everyone that disagrees with you? Do you need to fluff up your ego because your life is pathetic and miserable? You can do much better than this but please pick and choose what I wrote and come up with some way to put me down. Have a blessed New Year!!

Your last sentence is baffling. Why write it? If your duty on earth is to increase the population in the kingdom of heaven, as I'm sure you've heard on many a Sunday, don't do what you just did. It's not working. Good lord ...

Gregg Doyel is a columnist for He covered the ACC for the Charlotte Observer, the Marlins for the Miami Herald, and Brooksville (Fla.) Hernando for the Tampa Tribune. He was 4-0 (3 KO's!) as an amateur boxer, and volunteers for the ALS Association. Follow Gregg Doyel on Twitter.

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