Posted by Adam Jacobi
Now that Ohio State is facing a mountain of NCAA scrutiny over players selling items, the only instance of college football players selling their jerseys and other memorabilia is now officially over. Oh wait, A.J. Green did it last year, but he served a not-at-all objectionable four-game suspension for that transgression. So those isolated incidents are in the books, and not indicative of any larger trend of such misdeeds. That's the actual reality of the situation and we're sticking to it.
Hypothetically speaking, however, players do this all the time. Here to drive that point home is former Florida linebacker Channing Crowder, who kicked off his new radio show in Miami today with a doozy of a hypothetical situation.
"I'll say hypothetically I don't have any more of my Florida jerseys," Crowder said Sunday. "There were some Jacksonville businessmen that really hypothetically liked my play."
Luckily, that's just hypothetical, so of course nobody actually did anything wrong. Nothing to see here, NCAA.
They gone? No? Fine, then I'll play the game too.
Hypothetically speaking, it's ludicrous that the NCAA is aggressively policing something like poor college kids bartering items and looking for the hook-up. Hypothetically, it's a fact of life that athletic scholarships pay for school but don't put cash in a young man's hand, and as long as these young men live in a world that requires money to do anything above and beyond eating, sleeping, going to class and playing football, they're going to hypothetically want money -- one way or another.
Hypothetically, it strikes me as downright un-American that the NCAA finds it necessary to police these young men's financial activity and disallow them the freedom to do somehting as hypothetically simple as selling anything for money. Hypothetically speaking, the NCAA isn't really protecting the student-athletes from anything with this rule; rather, the amateurism is enforced solely to protect the member institutions' tax-exempt status, and while I hypothetically can't begrudge a school from trying to keep from paying taxes, it would be hypothetically refreshing if one of them would come right out and say the rule's in place for their benefit and not the hypothetical athletes'.
But that's all hypothetical. Luckily, nobody's breaking the rules under the NCAA's nose in real life, so we don't have to worry about any larger issues.