Patrick's Picks: Worst Moments In Sports For 2009

Patrick FerliseCorrespondent IJanuary 1, 2010

EAST HARTFORD, CT - OCTOBER 31:  Fans remember Jasper Howard, the murdered the Connecticut Huskies cornerback, before the game against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights on October 31, 2009 at Rentschler Field in East Hartford, Connecticut.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

This past year has touched me in many ways, it has reminded my family and myself that there is much to be learned and much to be remembered from people's good causes and their horrible mistakes. It has reminded me that we must not just try our best to succeed, but try to turn away from the mistakes that others have made.

This year we have seen athlete's lives been taken from them in cold blood, and we've seen athlete's been stripped of their untouchable crowns. Who some of us thought they were, is not really who they were on the inside. In other circumstances, they were better than we thought they were. Here are my picks.

Jasper "Jazz" Howard Murder

Jasper Howard grew up in Michigan with his mother who tried her hardest to raise him to be a respectable member in society. On his part, he succeeded in being a valuable member of the UConn community in college. He joined the University of Connecticut football team and proved to be a talented player. His life was turning out to be the dream his mother had hoped he would recieve, and it was even better for Jasper himself.

At a dance on campus, Howard was brutilly murdered in the midst of the football season. As news flooded the internet and television networks, police were frantically searching for the suspects who commited the horrible crime. UConn police arrested John William Lomax II, Hakim Muhammad, and Jamal Todd on charges of murder. The UConn fans and football team honored their fallen player in their upcoming game against West Virginia University. Jasper Howard and his family will always be remembered at the University of Connecticut.

Bengals Wide Reciever Dead

Chris Henry's death was met with much controversy from Bengals fans and football spectators. Chris Henry was known to many football fans for being considered a trouble maker on and off the field in previous seasons. But his Bengal team mates knew him better. Henry was considered by his team mates to be a soft-spoken guy with a heart for his friends. Some Journalists will also say that Chris Henry was a polite young man with respect, other fans will say "he's a guy with a chip on his shoulder."

Chris Henry's death also was casted with a shadow as was found to have fallen from the back of his fiance's accelerating pick-up truck after a domestic dispute. Chris' death left his three sons without a father, and a fiance with out a spouse. It is truely a shame that we see this type of tragedy happen in football.

Tiger Woods Scandal

Tiger Woods was faced with a puzzle that he could not cover up. Woods, after crashing his Cadillac Escalade into a tree on his residence, was faced with cameras and police to answer to. Soon news reports began surfacing that Tiger's incident earlier in the week had been the result of a domestic dispute between his wife, Elin.

More news reports began to come to light, revealing Tiger's multiple affairs with nine different women. Throughout his ordeal he released little to no statements and was not seen entering or leaving his residence. After journalists worked around the clock, they compiled a list of confirmed cases of adultery that Woods had committed. One or more of his alleged mistresses were pornstars or lingerie models. This not only was an embarrassment to Tiger and his family, but an embarrassment to the classy reputation he had achieved throughout his golfing career.

The Texas Tech Saga... Still Continuing

Coming to the end of the year, football fans were met with the worst possible drama and embarrassment of a university. Texas Tech University fired Red Raiders head coach Mike Leach after he was met with allegations of mistreatment of a wide reciever with a concussion. Adam James, son of ESPN analyst Craig James, reported mistreatment done to him by his former coach during practice after he sustained a minor concussion. Both parties of Leach and James met with conflicting stories of how the real incident happened.

Texas Tech responded by siding with the James family and firing Mike Leach. Texas Tech and Mike Leach are still releasing information on the alleged breach of conduct which the Leach camp declines ever happened. It has become a firestorm of embarrassment for the James family, the Leach organization, and Texas Tech University.

Bobby Bowden Forced to Retire

After over 35 years as coach of the Florida State Seminoles, Bobby Bowden bid his farewells on New Years Day in the Gator Bowl. After a sparking controversy this year between the FSU Board of Trustees and Coach Bowden's staff, legendary Bobby was forced to retire at the end of the season, or be fired. This comes after Florida State signed a contract with offensive coordinator "Jimbo" Fisher which stated that he would recieve the head coaching job at FSU before 2011 or be payed $5,000,000 for breach of contract.

Florida State forced Bobby Bowden into a corner in what the FSU President now says "we were wrong." Many fans also called for Bowden's retiring after declining seasons starting back in 1998. FSU also suffers a loss after Defensive Coordinator Mickey Andrews coached his final game in the Gator Bowl. Andrews was on the two BCS National Championship winning staff at FSU and was credited with a large portion of what got the 'Noles to the Championship games.

The Final Play

If you would like to read more about any of these stories, you can visit my profile page or click the links below to view more information. Thank you for reading and have a great 2010!

Jasper Howard:

Chris Henry:

Texas Tech Saga: