With the Alamo Bowl only three days away, it seems as if more has been discussed about the off-the-field issues than the actual game itself.
It all started when several Michigan State players were suspended for the bowl game after being involved in a campus fight at a fraternity. Among the players suspended included starters at the receiver and secondary positions.
And now, Texas Tech has officially fired coach Mike Leach after allegations have surfaced on a national scale concerning his behavior towards a player who suffered a concussion and was confined to an electrical closet.
When two programs are on the verge of a bowl game, strategies and statistics are usually thrown around relentlessly. But instead of talking about Texas Tech’s offense or the Spartans’ All-American linebacker (Greg Jones), fans and the media are being caught in the hoopla of distractions and disturbances.
Of course allegations of locking a player in an electric closet are serious, as are a bunch of scholarship players getting into a tussle before the last game of the season. At the same time, the people over at Valero must be thinking their bowl game has turned into a regular anger management session.
The only thing the game is missing is Tyler Durden’s fight club.
Bowl games with these types of scenarios do not occur so frequently.
There are maybe one or two games per bowl season which are plagued by issues not directly related to the games themselves, but to have two teams experiencing major personnel changes within a month of playing one another is almost unprecedented. The Alamo Bowl is not the king of glitz and glamour, although maybe it will actually get more viewers now.
People love controversy and love watching others excel in idiocy—just look at the Tiger Woods situation. The same thought pattern can now be associated with this year’s Alamo Bowl. At first it was only Michigan State looking like the embarrassed teenager hiding in the corner at the school dance, but now Texas Tech is the teenager’s friend sitting right next to him.
Sports are more than just competition in today’s society; they are a form of entertainment. The transgressions of both coaches and players alike are perceived as ill-advised and a black mark for the NCAA as a whole, as well as those involved with the entire Alamo Bowl experience.
However, seeing people fail and how those around them react to such circumstances may prove to cause an even bigger stir than a game itself. But whatever you do, don’t tell either team that is the case.