After Tommy Lewis sprang off the bench to tackle Rice's Dick Moegle in the 1954 Cotton Bowl as Moegle tore down the sidelines towards a sure 95-yard touchdown, the Alabama fullback explained his bizarre move by telling everyone, "I guess I'm too full of Alabama ."
Fast forward 56 years. Alabama's Marcel Dareus stands accused of attending a party thrown by professional sports agents this summer. While the details are still forthcoming about the incident, no matter what Dareus may say about it, one thing seems clear.
He's too full of Marcel Dareus.
How else could one explain why such a talented player take a risk like that? Why would a player on arguably the best team in the nation would put that talent and that team and countless hours of hard work and possibly, just possibly, a repeat national championship on the line by going to South Beach?
"Hey, I did it to help the team," doesn't sound right as a possible excuse. Neither does, "I know we were warned about this type of stuff, but everybody's doing it, so..." And, "I didn't know it was an 'agent party'" doesn't hold water, either.
What this action screams is something that has less to do with 'team' and more to do with 'me'.
Yes, yes; I realize that Mr. Dareus is a young person whose ability to make good decisions is not fully developed. Yes, I understand the pressures he's under. And, yes, like Tommy Lewis 56 years ago, it was a boneheaded move.
Perhaps I'm being too hard on the young man, but he has awfully big shoes to fill when it comes to excusing boneheaded behavior. As Lewis sat and wept unashamedly in the locker room following that Cotton Bowl game, his heart broken by the loss, he reached for the one thing that would somehow justify what he did. And, in reaching, Lewis touched something universal in 'Bama fans.
We, too, are too full of Alabama sometimes.
My fear is that Marcel Dareus isn't full enough.