Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The University of Oregon football team will return to prominence

If I told you that I could take the University of Oregon and their football team’s image from complete THUGS and turn them into perfect little angels who hoist a BCS championship trophy above their heads with green and yellow confetti floating everywhere in under a year, is that something you might be interested in? I’m sure it would violate NCAA rules to actually sell that script to Hollywood, but it still won’t stop ESPN from creating a movie that will be replayed 692 times on all five of their networks. If this were USC, they could sell the script to Hollywood since half those guys are paid to play!

It is without question that the University of Oregon and their football team is in crisis mode after numerous off field troubles. The latest victim, Jamere Holland, just found out that social media (facebook) can cost you an opportunity to receive a D-1 scholarship to play football, and obtain a degree for the University of Oregon. We can go ahead and throw a $50,000 price tag on the education, and possibly millions more are swirling down the drain in potential NFL contracts if he doesn’t find his way back to the field soon. Word to the wise: don't be idiots, go check your privacy settings on all your social networking sites.

These kids are out of control. I would call them adults, but due to their inability to act like adults, I think we should stick with referring to them as kids for now. The university needs to take action to preserve, and restore the integrity of the institution, athletic department, and football program. Don’t worry Duck fans, I have everything figured out! The answer lies in the spring 2010 academic calendar. This proposal will apply to all collegiate athletes at the University of Oregon; NOT just the football players. This plan will turn the ducks back into the primadonnas that we are.

During the athlete’s non-competitive season, they will be required to register for at least one credit of independent study requiring them to spend 30 hours volunteering somewhere within the Eugene/Springfield area during that particular quarter. You hold a press conference with UO President Richard Lariviere, Athletic Director Mike Bellotti, and Head Football Coach Chip Kelly. Kelly will be the one to take the proposal to Bellotti for approval. This program allows student athletes to give back to the community, and to those who are less fortunate. I see this as a mentoring program for youth that will help build relationships, and will help restore the brand image of what the university stands for. The personal growth and development of these student athletes will experience working with troubled youth, is something that cannot be learned on the athletic fields or courts. This is a perfect opportunity to develop a partnership with Serbu Youth Detention Facility for troubled youth in the community. This facility resides directly across the street from Autzen Stadium, and I think it’s time to start seeing the potential for a relationship between the detention center and the university athletic department.

Phil Knight believes that there is no such thing as bad press, and a lot of people will disagree with that statement. What people fail to understand is that the negative publicity allows for an opportunity to evaluate the situation, address it to the media, and then take the necessary steps to correct those problems. Once you have taken those corrective steps, you then invite the media back to showcase the university’s progress, and use it as a platform to promote the new program. Once graduation rates increase due to the implementation of Coach Kelly’s program, other institutions will follow and adopt something similar.

This will also ensure John Canzano’s absence from Oregon, as he has never written anything positive about the institution. I’m guessing Canzano failed to get in to the school of journalism at Oregon, and had to settle for a degree from Douche- Bag-U…Quack Quack, Go Ducks!!

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