- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
We are kidding ourselves if we think major-college football programs are ever going to let something like a criminal record get in the way of their fervent pursuit of a prized high school athlete. The recruiting motto is: The better the player, the more blind the eyes of universities become.
Joseph Ambrosio, York, Pa.
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While I enjoyed your article on the criminal backgrounds of players on Top 25 football teams (Rap Sheets, Recruits and Repercussions, March 7), I have to ask who, if anyone, deserves a second chance if not these young men who have yet to reach adulthood? The question brings to mind Pat Tillman, who as a teenager was arrested and charged as a juvenile and pleaded guilty to felony assault. To some, Tillman's crime should have kept him in jail and off the Arizona State football team—and we would have been deprived of a hero.
Gig Harbor, Wash.
Of the 204 players with rap sheets, I wonder how many used performance-enhancing drugs? After all, extreme aggression is a side effect of sustained steroid use. If in fact there is a link between the two, then these players and their crimes become a symptom of a much deeper problem in college football.
In your mention of Utah recruit Viliseni Fauonuku, you wrote that his coach at Bingham High, Dave Peck, told SI during an interview that he was unaware of details regarding Fauonuku's alleged crime. However, when The Salt Lake Tribune reported on Fauonuku's possible first-degree-felony charges for aggravated robbery in its Sept. 24, 2010, issue, Peck acknowledged that he was aware of the charges that Fauonuku faced. "Until he's proven guilty," Peck told The Tribune, "it would be a shame to take things away and do things that would harm that kid right now."