Sunday, April 04, 2010

On the NCAA (an aside)

One thing that has really bothered me this Easter weekend is reading Daniel Orton's tweets. Orton just finished his freshman season at UK, he was a highly-ranked player out of high school and originally committed to play for the previous coach but kept his commitment to the new one.

Orton has been rumored to be entering the NBA draft, a rumor substantiated by an interview his father gave last week. It seems that UK fans have been dogging the kid simply because Facebook and Twitter give them the ability to.
Orton's tweets:
3 things I want to address: 1. I've never been a me first person. I came to UK bc I loved the fans. I care what they think of me. I have a great relationship w ALL the coaches 3. Demarcus is a GREAT player and he made me better and he deserves all the praise and accolades he's received. Please understand my dad lost the love of his life of 23 yrs. He is a great father and a great example of a strong Christian man. We are a very humble family. Its been an emotional year and a half. We are all still grieving bc my mom was our rock. Please understand my dad lost the love of his life of 23 yrs. He is a great father and a great example of a strong Christian man.

So, here's a 19 year old who is getting brow-beaten by selfish fans who all have an opinion but none of them have much information. His family is mourning the loss of his mother who would have loved to see him reach this level.

Easter morning, Orton writes:
People I KNOW that if I dropped outta school it would cost UK a scholarship. I'm not self centered or a me person at all. I'm a team player. That's why I didn't. Your scholarship won't be taken away for all you fans out there that need it so badly!!

And to make it worse, some "fan" writes him this message in response:
I'm suddenly ashamed of all the times in my life I booed a 19 year old kid while he was playing ball (and the 50 year old referees doing their jobs). Of all the times I got upset when those 19 year old kids didn't do as well as I expected, or what I'd hoped, or whatever. Of all the times I hated an opposing team just because they were the opposing team.

He's just trying to make a living, to do the best thing for everyone. The kid needs love, prayer, and support, not Big Blue Nation lighting up his phone. All of us have opinions, NONE of us have any information. I think we should all be ashamed.


Jessica said...

Well said, brother. People with opinions but no compassion can be dangerous, especially when they have the ability to type.

JDTapp said...

I should point out the "everyone has an opinion but no one has any information" is a quote from Billy Gillispie last year. He said he was guilty of doing to the Dallas Cowboys what UK fans were doing to him.