Sorry, Reggie. You can’t have it both ways

I’d have a lot more respect for Reggie Bush if he had stood up last week and said the following:

“I won the Heisman Trophy because of what I did on the field. In case you didn’t notice, I was a pretty damn good player on a team that won the national championship in 2004 and came within a few seconds of winning it again in 2005.

“Yeah, my family and I took a bunch of money and stuff. So what? USC made millions off of me and my teammates. I don’t see anybody asking THEM to give that money back!

“I’m not giving up the Heisman Trophy. And if those folks at the Heisman Trust  want it back they are going to have to come to my house and get it. So, in the immortal words of Les Miles: ‘Have a great day!”

But no, Reggie Bush didn’t take a stand.  I was with you, Reggie, until you went to great pains to say that returning the Heisman was “definitely not an admission of guilt. It’s just me showing respect to the Heisman Trophy.”

Please.

So let me see if I have this straight. You, Mr. Bush, are returning the single biggest individual award in college football but you didn’t do anything wrong. You just thought it was the right thing to do. You just did it out of the goodness of your heart.

Sorry, Reggie. I ain’t buying it. Let me propose an alternative theory.

You wanted to save yourself the public embarrassment of having the trophy taken away. You and your “advisors” wanted calm down the folks who are paying your endorsement money. The first rule of politics is to get a bad story off the front page with another story. And that is what you did.

Even your former offensive coordinator, Steve Sarkisian, saw through it.

“He had a chance to apologize and look like a good guy,” the Washington head coach told ESPN’s Shelley Smith. “But in giving it back and not apologizing, he just looks like an idiot again.”

And he likes you.

No, Mr. Bush, you want to have it both ways and you can’t. You’ve already had your image stripped from USC’s Heritage Hall. When they get through scrubbing the USC athletic offices, it will be like Reggie Bush never existed. Now there will be a blank space where your name used to be on the Heisman Trophy list.

As great as you were, and still are, you have dodged and weaved on this question for five years. Your school got hammered. A lot of guys you played with, who will never get paid for playing, are hurt.

 You called the new athletics director, Pat Haden. What you actually said or why you called still isn’t clear. You said it was an apology. Pat Haden said that if an apology came out of your mouth, he didn’t hear it. Guess you were trying to have it both ways again.

But the important thing, Reggie, is that you got paid. And you deserve every dime you get in the NFL because you are a great, great player. One of the best I’ve ever seen.

 But all that money, as great as it us,  won’t be able to provide an answer to your grandchildren when, someday, they ask why your name is not on the Heisman Trophy list. They will ask why their grandfather, who they heard was one of the greatest players in the history of USC and college football, doesn’t get any love from his old school. Grandpa, did you do something wrong?

There won’t be a public relations person or an “advisor” there to answer that question for you. You’ll have handle that one yourself.  I wish you the best of luck with that.

Please follow me on Twitter:

www.twitter.com/MrCFB

163 comments Add your comment

kaput

September 21st, 2010
7:09 am

Some grammatical problems in there, Mr. Football.

david

September 21st, 2010
7:09 am

Sports Illustrated had a story 20 years ago that Mike Rozier received money before he won the Heisman Trophy. No one was saying he should have returned the trophy then. OJ’s a murderer and no one is saying he should give back the trophy.

dd

September 21st, 2010
7:11 am

Who cares about this loser…..

tony's a homer

September 21st, 2010
7:21 am

AJ Green can’t have it both ways either Tony the homer. Let me understand this one: Reggie is a bad guy while AJ was wronged by the NCAA. When are you and the rest of thUGA nation going to stop making excuses for your team while piling on all others.

Brad

September 21st, 2010
7:23 am

Reggie Bush will be looked at as an example more than a great player in my opinion.

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
7:24 am

It’s a shame this happened to start with..there is no way anyone can make me believe not one of the coaching staff didn’t know this was going on..so I don’t feel real sorry for USC, Bush’s team mates that are another thing entirely they did the work, paid in sweat, blood and pain and they didn’t get paid….just screwed by one of their own…sad.

KidRay

September 21st, 2010
7:25 am

Reggie (or any other CFB player) can never admit to taking money becaue of the IRS Tax implications. In other words, they didnt pay taxes on the money so they cannot admit to taking any,.

Go Rutgers

Kitster

September 21st, 2010
7:28 am

RIP Kenny McKinley

You Ain't-Know Gaily Whacker

September 21st, 2010
7:31 am

Here is what Bush and Bo Bo said, about the past week in sports.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dcaEpyita58

Keep America strong, build more submarines.

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
7:32 am

tony’s a homer and your an idiot…Bush took hundreds of thousands of dollars over years and cost his school a national title..and you equate that to a 1000 bucks for a jersey…which by the way jackwagon A.J is paying for with a 4 game suspension during his career at UGA ,Bush never missed a minute for his crimes. Your envy of UGA just makes you so damn dumb.

jumbeauxtiger

September 21st, 2010
7:37 am

I immmediately thought when he announced that he was returning his trophy that he did so as he knew or was told by an intermediary that the award would be vacated. I agree too that he wanted to save himself the embarrassment. He didn’t have to go in to any specifics about money or inappropriate benefits; just apologize. Most people are forgiving as others have done far worse.

Tony, you pointed out in the Spring that Miles’ seat was hotter than Richt. I stated at the time that alot of people were not happy with Richt and all it would take is for him to lose to S. Carolina, Auburn, Florida and Tech. Obviously his seat is hotter now.

I’m not saying tha Miles is off the hotseat because he is not. But I don’t think you recognized how delicate of a situation Richt was in at the time.

Not a Tech or UGA Fan.....

September 21st, 2010
7:39 am

I agree Bush should have kept it and made them come take it away from him but the Heisman Trophy is not the award it was in the 50’s & 60’s. Today it’s a popularity beauty contest that goes to the player that get’s the most highlights on ESPN. Matt Leinart is the guy that should be upset because had Bush not been allowed to play that year he would have joined Archie Griffin as a 2 time winner,

Chris

September 21st, 2010
7:43 am

Bush did not take the money till the spring of his 2nd year at USC. AJ took money from a man who was arrested last week for the sale of cocaine. Tit for Tat.

By the way fishy, who is the envy of a team who is 0-2 in their conference, had not won a a National Championship in three decades? I can’t wait to see what you write if UGA loses to Miss State.

Jake

September 21st, 2010
7:44 am

Give it to the runner up.

War

September 21st, 2010
7:44 am

UGA…makes me laugh

Gen Neyland

September 21st, 2010
7:45 am

Mike Ditka told the story that the first winner of the Heisman (Jay Berwanger) used it as a door stop. In Reggie’s case, he has shown the brotherhood of the sporting world he’d rather give back the hardware then be labeled a rat. That goes down big in the world of shady.

Sean

September 21st, 2010
7:45 am

Oh my God, can we leave the Reggie Bush stuff alone??? It happened FIVE years ago, who cares?? I swear the only people that care are those in the media. I’m far more concerned with the 2010 football season than the 2005 season.

Is there a lazier crutch for high-moral sportswriters than “what will I tell my grandchildren?” garbage. By that time, college football players will probably be getting paid for all the money they make schools and your grandkids will ask, “who cares?”

http://thebubblescreen.blogspot.com

jumbeauxtiger

September 21st, 2010
7:49 am

I agree how2fish that the Trojan coaches had to know which explains why they were hammered by the NCAA.

layinlow

September 21st, 2010
7:50 am

Ummm. He was certainly a great collegiate but absolutely not a great pro.That can’t even be argued anymore. Bush has never even had a 1000 yards rushing as an NFL player. In fact his high water mark in the NFL for rushing is only like 700 yards. He is still a threat as a receiver out of the backfield but that is pretty much his only asset as an NFL back. So to say he that he earns every cent in the NFL because he is a great player is debatable. There was even talk of him possibly being cut before this season because his salary was so high for a one dimensional player. Now every draft analyst in the world who said Houston was crazy for taking Mario Williams first over Bush now concedes the Texans without question made the right choice. The thing that helps Bush shake the label of draft bust is the fact that the Saints are super bowl champions so nobody really has anything to gripe about when dissecting them. Bush is still a free agent in my fantasy league if that tells you anything. Barnhart the more I read you’re work the less impressed I am with you.

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
7:53 am

Chris tit for tat this moron..really A.J is responsible for this loser being a drug dealer??..what next moron A.J responsible for the Iraq war, the economy, the fact your Xena Warrior Princess love doll left you for another Bug. I’ll tell you what I’ll say if we lose to Miss State..Ouch! but you will STILL be a moron..fell better now?

Frank Lane

September 21st, 2010
7:56 am

I think that he should have returned it together with an apology for playing illegally, an apology to the Athletic Club, to USC, to his team mates, to his family, and to his fans.

tmac

September 21st, 2010
7:57 am

There’s a little bit of a difference between selling a jersey (then admitting your mistake) and accepting A HOUSE (and lying about it) as a gift don’t you think? Jerk.

tony's a homer

September 21st, 2010
8:00 am

Okay how2fish, I admit it, I AM an idiot. But my jealousy for the University of Georgia is so great that it makes me write idiotic things on this blog, repeatedly. I ask God every day “why Lord, why can’t tech ever be as good as Georgia?…. please help me get over this envy, please.”. So far my prayers have not been answered, so until they are, you’ll probably continue to see my short-sighted, non-thoughtout, ramblings on here. Just know all my drivel comes from a spindly body, a sub-standard mind and a jealous heart. I’m working on improving, but I’m sure stupid crap will keep coming out from time to time. Sorry.

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
8:04 am

tony’s a homer no no that’s great admitting a problem is the first step to recovery! Now just get some help..or perhaps a girlfriend and you’ll be on the road to recovery in no time..it will take time and dedication but I’m sure you can do it! Best of luck your pal how2fish!

guy

September 21st, 2010
8:04 am

the problem with the whole, ‘but the schools make money off the players!!!” excuse is that it isnt against the rules for schools to do so. it is against the ncaa rules for players to take $$, hence all the hubub lately.

the schools make the most $$ off football and use that to fund all the non-nrevenue sports. the players get free room/board, and a national stage to show their talents to nfl scouts in order to make it to the next level. to act like it’s a one way street and the players are getting the shaft here is ludicrous.

anyone who thinks that paying college players wouldn’t give a pretty hefty and unfair advantage to the handful of larger programs in the country (michigan, ohio state, usc, florida, texas, etc.) had blinders on.

3rdn8

September 21st, 2010
8:05 am

“Heisman Trophy”

absurd award to begin with. 12,000 kids playing CFB on different teams, in different leagues, and you’re pick one to be the best?

Now it has become a daily discussion starting in August.

It’s TEAM game!

dagnabit

September 21st, 2010
8:07 am

Reggie Bush made himself a professional football player.

Johnny DangerDawg

September 21st, 2010
8:08 am

Sean,
If the “Reggie Bush stuff” is getting old, you can blame Reggie. If he had told the truth back when the investigation started, it would have ended years ago, USC would be off probation by now, and Reggie would only be mentioned in the news for being the 3rd best rusher on the Saints.

Gen Neyland

September 21st, 2010
8:10 am

Another case of it’s Bush’s fault..?

3rdn8

September 21st, 2010
8:14 am

As for players being paid. There been a lot of press recently about how the schools and coaches are making millions, and the players get tee-shirts.

So what? General Dynamics gives research grants to Cal Poly, I’m sure there is corporate money flowing into colleges from corporations, state, and federal government sources as well. Should the main student body receive a divy from that?

College football players are well rewarded beyond room, board, and tuition. Doors open up for them that the average student can only dream about.

Besides, if they think they’re being exploited; quit.

And….quit calling them “kids”. A “kid” is an eighteen year-old humping a mortor tube up a mountain in Afghanistan.

Purple Drank

September 21st, 2010
8:18 am

Have to point out that the UGA fans on this site live in a very small and delusional world.

Completely clueless.

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
8:22 am

Purple Drank I have to point out your Completely clueless.And just like you I have nothing to back that up with.

Palladin

September 21st, 2010
8:23 am

Gen Neyland

September 21st, 2010
8:10 am
Another case of it’s Bush’s fault..?

It IS Bush’s fault… and I’m tired of hearing about the entire family.

I don’t even eat their baked beans anymore.

:-)

Palladin

September 21st, 2010
8:25 am

Tony,

Is it too late to delete this post and write something football related instead? After all, there are actual games being played this weekend.

James T. Kirk

September 21st, 2010
8:26 am

Tony,

Clearly you respect the Jackets, correct? And you admit we are one of the best teams in the country, right? Why do the voters not see this obviousness? We have a Heisman winner, or soon to be, and the best coach in the nation. What more do they want?

3rdn8

September 21st, 2010
8:29 am

Palladin

Amen. One hundred times the ink is being expended on this dirt bag, than is used covering the linebacker at Boston College who is playing through cancer treatments.

We’ve really lost our perspective.

Vegas

September 21st, 2010
8:32 am

He won’t know his grandkids so it won’t matter. lol

how2fish

September 21st, 2010
8:33 am

James T. Kirk the Jayhawks respect your program..really they do.3rdn8 great point there!

You Ain't-Know Gaily Whacker

September 21st, 2010
8:35 am

Here is a song for Bush and A. J.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0rvLeCMTofE

Keep UGA strong, build a coaching staff.

3rdn8

September 21st, 2010
8:35 am

Tony

I’ve read your articles for years, and have never complained. In fact, if I’ve ever commented on your articles, it has been a positive statement.

However…..the quality is slip-sliding away. I don’t know how you maintain the schedule you’re keeping. There is no way I could travel, and work in as many venues as you, and still have time to write a daily article. It’s starting to take a toll.

WonderDawg

September 21st, 2010
8:41 am

That’s an excellent point, 3rdn8 at 8:14.

1eyedJack

September 21st, 2010
8:41 am

Give everybody a Heisman Tropy for participation. Spread the wealth! We wouldn’t want any bench warmers to get their feelings hurt would we? It might damage their self-esteem. And all of ya’ll should be sharing your bounty with the lazy and ignorant because, well, they want to participate in the American Dream too.

Big time?? Not

September 21st, 2010
8:43 am

Its been a while so let me remind y’all:

Four tickets, four hot dogs, four cokes

Ramblor

September 21st, 2010
8:46 am

Wow, Tony, what an embarrassing story on your part. Why even waste time on it. And making a big deal out of what his grandkids will ask? Really? How about he was providing for his mother and father like any son would want to do. Yeah, it was wrong, but look at the millions USC was making off of Mr. Bush. So, please, give us a break. What Reggie did was wrong, but he did it with good intentions of providing for his family. That’s the easiest answer to grandkids.

Gen Neyland

September 21st, 2010
8:47 am

Palladin : …and the beans are way over-priced. The Golden Retiever doesn’t tell us that part. Agree with your input on the subject matter for the day.

2eyedKing

September 21st, 2010
8:48 am

Get your own bounty 1eyedJack, you sound like one of those Tea Partiers screaming for the gummit to keep their grubby paws off of YOUR Medicare.

tony's a homer

September 21st, 2010
8:50 am

Fish, in your first post it’s you are or you’re not your. In your second post it’s what is or what’s s not what. Obviously you didn’t get into UGA. Maybe Clayton State.

Reggie got what he deserved. And so did AJ. the difference is thUGA fans make excuses for their team rather than taking responsibility. thUGA has three years of double digit off field arrests and two years ago the problems probably cost yall a chance at another SEC title and a possible BCS championship. thUGA nation should own up to the problems, and then maybe Richt will too.

Not jealous of UGA’s program. I’m a LSU Tiger enjoying our success and darn proud we kick trouble makers off our team at the expense of winning. We’ll be better off in the long run for it. Jealous is a tired accusation when you don’t have a real argument. GFY.

mrj

September 21st, 2010
8:51 am

Mr. (South-Eastern Conference) College Football.
Stick with covering the SEC. Those are the people that you have apparently charmed into your nickname (overblown) and your national tv gig. Your indignation re: Bush is obviously in an attempt to be “googled” and picked up by other newswires. It’s only slightly relevant, old news. The guy cheated. Everyone knew it, maybe too late to stop this from happening 5 years later, but knew it none the less. No one outside the media, and USC alum, cares. MAYBE Vince Young cares.
And for Bush to be called one of the greatest you’ve seen in the NFL? wow. You should watch more NFL games. He’s a good player on a good team.

Sincerely, Big Ten (or whatever the Conf will be called next year) Sports Fan, in ATL.

gator bait

September 21st, 2010
8:52 am

UGA is a sub par program and has been for the last 5 years, SC, Ark have clearly improved while UGA just has not, Miss State will win this Sat so bank it. UGA fans know your role and as the new doormats of the SEC, it’s ok to own it, especially you fish food…you are GATOR BAIT.

RxDawg

September 21st, 2010
8:54 am

Man, I agree 100%. I wish you were Bush’s PR guy Tony. I would of absolutely loved it if he told the Heisman Trust folks to f off. I think it’s political correctness garbage all over this. On both sides. It’s quite obvious Bush didn’t write those statements (they sound more like a lawyer) and it’s quite obvious he’s getting some bad advice, and maybe from multiple sources.