Rants, comments, thoughts and funny - mostly funny - on all things Michigan and college football.

If you have ideas, tips, links or pictures for the blog, e-mail us at: MichiganZone at gmail dot com.

Thanks for checking out the M Zone. And if you enjoy the site, please pass the link on to a friend or two. We'd sure appreciate it.

Twitter: @MZoneBlog

Facebook/MZoneBlog

Best Of Tat and Tresselgate

M Zone Videos

Best Of MZone 2.0

Best Of The Original MZone

Tosu Favorites

MZone Archive

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Nebraska Making Same Mistakes

Didn't the Nebraska football program learn anything from the Lawrence Phillips fiasco a few years ago?

Judging from the latest news out of Lincoln, apparently not.

Husker coach Bill "Throat Slash" Callahan is allowing a recruit who was originally charged with sexually abusing two women in a dormitory (before pleading down) to join the Nebraska football team.

DB Major Culbert was sentenced this month in Eugene, Oregon to five years probation and 25 days in jail after pleading guilty to misdemeanor charges of criminal trespass and harassment stemming from his January recruiting trip to the University of Oregon.

And that's good enough for Callahan who said, "The charges against Major in Oregon have been reduced to a misdemeanor, but we take this situation very seriously."

I mean, yeah, if it's just a misdemeanor, by all means, suit him up!

Callahan goes on to say, "We have granted (Culbert) a second chance to be a part of our program, and, accordingly, he will operate under a zero-tolerance policy from this point forward. We believe his willingness to accept these terms reflects positively on his character and commitment to focus on academics and athletics while here at Nebraska."

"Zero tolerance," huh? What complete bullshit. Didn't Culbert already blow that at the dorm in Eugene? So it's not really "zero" tolerance, technically it's more of a "mulligan" tolerance policy.

As for Callahan saying that by accepting the unnamed conditions imposed on Culbert in order to play football, this reflects "positively on (Culbert's) character," give me a fucking break. What was the kid's other choice? Probably not much as I'm guessing hoping the other D1 schools recruiting him backed away.

Now, for those of you who say I'm being too harsh or, as Callahan alluded to, "Doesn't the kid deserve a second chance?" I say no. He deserves a second chance at getting his life in order after serving his sentence but he doesn't deserve to play college football. And he certainly shouldn't be getting that "second chance" at Nebraska which got a huge black eye (to go along with their black shirts) when Phillips played for them. It just sends a message that this sort of behavior is to be tolerated...as long as one is a good enough athlete (with a good enough lawyer to get the charges reduced).

And the irony is, that "second chance" rationalization is the same thing former Husker coach Tom Osborne said about Phillips when he was at the helm.

Which gets me thinking...

I guess the Husker program did indeed learn something from the Lawrence Phillips fiasco -- ignore those itty, bitty off-the-field problems against women if a player can potentially help the team win a National Title. Maybe that's the "second chance" coach Callahan is talking about.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

A UM fan complaining about the coach of another school letting criminals play? Haaaaaaaaaaa Haaaaaaaaaaaaa Haaaaaaaa....oh man that's just ripe.

Yost said...

Uh...huh? You can say a lot about Lloyd, but what criminals does he have/has he had on the team?

BaggyPantsDevil said...

Can't forget Christian Peter. I guess Nebraska, like Miami, is trying to get back to their roots.

It's hard not to infer that since there's a "zero tolerance" policy in effect for Cuthbert, other Nebraska football players without a sexual assault conviction still get one freebie.

There are details on the incident here.

Anonymous said...

Marlin Jackson?

Anonymous said...

While I agree that Nebraska has had it's fair share of issues you cannot forget Marlin, another db a year or two ago (cannot remember his name) and then there were at least two kids who had trouble stealing from a store at which they worked and most recently is the DE/LB that transfered here from USC and then stole some girls cellphone and such. So Michigan is definitely not immune from having kids make bad decisions and then allowing them to continue to play on the football team.

Anonymous said...

Ah, the old "if they are winning they must be using criminals" card. Well played.

Yost said...

Anon 4:58pm,

Yeah, and wasn't there what's his name? What about that other guy?

And don't forget what's his face.

Anonymous said...

directions to Michigan from Nebraska- go east to smell it and north to you step in it

Anon makes me laugh said...

Anon,

Good one. Seriously. Never heard that before. No, really. You should write for the tonight show.

Anonymous said...

Yost, Baggy and the rest of you here at the M-Zone. Do I condone what Major and the othe recruit did? Not in the least, women should be held in the highest of regards. Things that happened during this case however, lead me to believe there is more then meets the eye. Mike Belloti, the HC for Oregon, for staters has used dirty recruiting, when trying to get a prospect to go to Oregon that has interest in Nebraska. The incident happened in January, yet no charges were filed until March or April. Now I know there are plenty of times where women are afraid to come forward, but months after the fact, just seems strange to me. Major even thought nothing more would be made of it, which tells me that either he thought the incident was minor or he has no regard. Also, there doesn't seem to be any past transgressions of the sort, so it would seem to me, at least, that this was a one time incident. If, indeed it was, I believe he should pay his debt, with the jail time, and be kept on a short leash n choke chain. Everyone fucks up, and there should be a second chance.

I also find it kinda funny that no one really focus' on the other kid, or on Rey Malunga or Dirty Sanchez among others, but then again, the last two played on the greatest. team. evar.

Of course, this is just my two cents, and anyone can come in saying I'm sporting Scarlet glasses and keg standing the red kool aid.

A Husker Fan

Yost said...

Respect the opinion, AHF. Good points all.

Matt said...

Rey Maualuga - not charged.
Mark Sanchez - not charged.
Your guy - charged.

'Nuf said.

BaggyPantsDevil said...

AHF,

You do indeed make some good points about the incident. What's also getting lost in all the "not another misogynistic Husker football player” is Oregon's role in this. Schools have used female recruiters in the past and there has been the implication that their "duties" include having sex with recruits. There is much about this incident that we’ll never know.

What is a fact is that Cuthbert pled guilty to criminal trespassing and harassment whereas the other athletes you mentioned were never charged.

Initially, I thought your suggestion that the charges against Cuthbert could have possibly been motivated--at least in part--by his spurning of Oregon seemed pretty reasonable, until I did some further checking. The other player, Marvin Johnson, who is going to go to attend Oregon, pled guilty to the same charges and got a nearly identical sentence (thirty days in jail vice twenty-five). So, if nothing else, law enforcement officials and the courts seem to have treated the two pretty much the same.

What is curious about this incident is that although police consider both Cuthbert and Johnson equally involved in the incident, Oregon seemed to decide early on that Johnson was less involved in any wrongdoing. Apparently, Oregon stopped recruiting Cuthbert after learning of the accusations. It’s unclear—based on stories here and here—whether Oregon was simply unaware of the accusations against Johnson or made a determination that he was somehow less involved. Or maybe they just think Johnson’s a better athlete and don’t care.

And I always thought Oregon attracted recruits with an X-Box in their locker and those snazzy diamond plate uniforms.

Anonymous said...

matt, did you stop to consider that maybe, just maybe, that might have had something to do with where they are going? Rey, knocked someones lights out, hardly any press coverage. Mark, among other things, sexual assault, which had a $200,000 bail at first, which was dropped due to lack of evidence, trying to get into a club with a phony ID, I remember hearing something about a DUI.

But, I digress, if you look at pretty much any school, I'm sure you will find many a black eye. What I, personally, believe, is that the track record of a kid should be considered. Is he prone to this type of behavior, or was it an anomoly, not thinking? If he is more prone to the behavior, then should he be allowed? No. If it was a moment of stupidity, should he be allowed? Yes, but under a strict code, and if he gets his nose dirty, even once, the schollie should be yanked and met with the full force of the law.

As I said before, everyone makes mistakes, and as long as its not a trend, and the person is sincere about proving it was a once in a lifetime event, then there should be a chance for redemption.

As far as Oregon goes, Belloti or someone else tried to Gary Barnett the kids, convinced the girls to seduce them, and the girls had a change of heart, that's just one of many possible scenarios that only those involved will know about, and the rest of us will be left wondering.

Ah well, it could be worse I guess. After those pictures of Jimmy Clausen, it's a good thing he's not coming here, otherwise I'm sure we'd find out if it was just a one time event for Major :-p

A Husker Fan

Anonymous said...

Also, the persons that everyone should be most concerned about, the actual women who were subjected to whatever misbehavior occured, backed the lighter sentence and didn't want the two athletes involved to be considered sex offenders. Were the actions wrong? Undoubtedly. However, the people involved and much closer to the ground than anyone on the blogosphere seemed the think this punishment fit the crime. Short leash, chance to prove it was a one off mistake. I guess I just disagree on playing further judge and jury beyond what the legal system has stated. Enjoy the site though!

Linkage:
http://www.omaha.com/index.php?u_pg=528&u_xid=13&u_sid=2201514

Anonymous said...

Ok... could someone who is actually able to correctly run a computer format that link.