Sunday, June 27, 2010
Kenneth Mister: Turner is newest victim of collegiate politics
Disclaimer: I've known Phil Turner, the subject of this column, for nearly my entire life. As next door neighbors, we grew up together in Grenada, Miss.
In life, timing is everything. Back in 2005, It took me one day to find out I wasn’t built to be a insurance salesman. The next day I dropped by the boss’ office and told him as long as pit bulls breathe, I wouldn’t be soliciting life insurance door-to-door anytime soon.
The point is, I didn’t depend on co-workers to pass the word. I had enough respect for him not to get the news via telephone. And I sure as hell wouldn’t send him a letter describing my intentions. (That’s no way to do business.)
But apparently, Mississippi State basketball coach Rick Stansbury and I don’t have the same values.
Unless you just awoke from a coma or you don’t follow Kyle Keazey’s (the Clarion Ledger’s Mississippi State beat reporter) every move on Twitter, you’ve heard the news that MSU basketball player Phil Turner had his scholarship yanked after reportedly missing a year-end meeting(s), while indicating to the several people that he didn’t plan on returning.
Turner, who says he has text messages stating the year-end meeting was cancelled, was informed via letter that he would have to foot the bill for his final four classes.
I understand college athletics is business. But this is an university, not Goldman Sachs.
Turner is the same guy who, despite his 6-foot-3 stature and guard-play abilities, took up the role as power forward for Stansbury. He took (and mostly hit) all late game shots for Stansbury. He redshirted for Stansbury.
How was Turner rewarded?....With a blatant slap to the face.
So if Renardo Sidney had of missed that meeting or be rumored to turn pro, would he have gotten a letter? Simply put, _____ (insert word) no!
The common sense in me screams there’s something missing to this story. And my guess would be that "Old Stans" is banking on Dee Bost pulling a miracle and filling that scholarship.
This is another eye-opening example that college athletes should be referred to as athlete-students, instead of the opposite. Loyalty takes a backseat to money and win totals. And trust no one, especially those who will bench you for Riley Benock.
Collegiate athletics has become collegiate politics. And you can call Phil Turner the new Al Gore.
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