One day you're the starting quarterback for one of the top 5 college programs in America and the next you might be playing football in Saskatchewan. Such is the case for Terrelle Pryor, a one time Heisman hopeful now mired in a scandal of corruption and bribery.
To be clear college athletes taking money is nothing new. SMU in the early 80's literally had a payroll for its players. In the 90's Billy Joe Hobert accepted a loan for $50,000 payable whenever. 7 years ago Reggie Bush had his parents living in a mini mansion rent free. This year Cam Newton........ The tradition of receiving improper benefits was here long before us and will continue long after we're gone. The question is why do theses players get caught?
The simple truth is their arrogance and naivety catches up with them. We must remember that these players are 18-22 years old and not very sophisticated. Criminal mastermind is not one of the skills listed on their resume. They get bad advice and fail to execute their money laundering schemes effectively. They convince themselves they are above the law and no one is watching so they don't cover their tracks very well. If they get caught they forget the paper trail leads right back to them. Can you believe there's anyone stupid enough to receive illegal payments by check in 2011? Terrelle Pryor is inexcusably in that category.
Terrelle Pryor ruined a college football program, but there's hope he may have an NFL career someday. His physical attributes are exceptional and you can't teach size or speed. It's unlikely he will play quarterback given his bad judgement and willingness to jeopardize an organization for his own personal gain. Tight end or wide receiver is where he'll end up. Terrelle Pryor is 21 with his whole life ahead of him, but at this point he's got more baggage than Paris Hilton on a summer retreat. Someone will take a chance on the kid though. Let's see what he does with it.