College Football

Sinking Decision

Who would have thought that in the wake of a category five hurricane that devastated the Gulf Coast, most notably New Orleans and Gulfport, Mississippi, the NCAA, the organization that took away amateur status from skier/football player Jeremy Bloom and gave it to former major-league third baseman Josh Booty, has done the most of any sports organization to help?No, Myles Brand did not send in food and water to those starving to death on the roofs of their houses, but he did help those student-athletes affected by the tragedy.

For the first time in the history of the NCAA, student-athletes that have watched their houses sunk, destroyed, lost, or whatever the case will receive a sort of amnesty from the strict restrictions.

Students are required to attend classes in order to participate in intercollegiate athletics. However, with cities inaccessible and campuses under water, it is impossible for schools such as Tulane to hold classes.

But for once, the NCAA wants to help.

Those affected will be granted amnesty from that rule.

And what about students who are trying to go see their families? The school is not allowed to pay for the athlete’s travel arrangements. Oh wait, now they are.

Steve Mallonee, managing director for membership services for the NCAA, said “They don’t need to be worrying about whether the situations they’re reacting to violate NCAA rules. We want them to do what they need to do.”

Bravo Steve.

And to boot, families of student-athletes that are now homeless are allowed to stay on campus, wherever the school may be.

Bravo Steve.

But honestly, is this fair? Is this fair that these student athletes are getting preferential treatment?

What about the tennis player at Kansas? Do you really think the school will pay his ticket back to Mobile to help rebuild his mother’s house?

What about the lacrosse player at Notre Dame? Do you really think the school will pay her bus fare to Gulfport to see if her family is even alive?

What about the science major at Temple? Do you really think the school will pay his train ride to attend his sister’s funeral?

The NCAA wants to make it available and I offer my thanks for that. But don’t make it an option. Make it mandatory!

If the student wants to go back and see if his or her family is alive, then the school should be forced to pay the bill. Regardless of whether he or she plays football, soccer, club rugby, or chess. Not just the starting point guard.

Until you have survived a category five hurricane yourself, you have no idea what is going through these people’s minds.

And compared to the pictures of this, even those who survived Andrew have no idea.

My family’s house and my parent’s marriage got destroyed during Hurricane Andrew in 1992. Had we not spent the night in Hialeah, I might not be writing this today. The winds blew the roof up and collapsed it into the house. We moved seven times over the next two and a half years and had my parents not come to an agreement, I would have been forced to choose in court whether I wanted to live with my mother or my father.

But what happened to my house and what happened in Homestead and Florida City is nothing compared to what has happened in New Orleans.

A city is under water. Steve and Myles, your ideas to allow classes to be cancelled and students to travel to see their families are juvenile.

Don’t give the option; make it mandatory.

Make all member institutions pay for their students to go home if the students choose to go home.

Southeastern Louisiana is under water, more water is leaking in through Lake Pontchartrain, Gulfport, Mississippi, among other places, is no more, Mobile Bay has widened, thousands of people are trapped in houses, drowning alive and starving to death, disease is running rampant in the brutal summer heat, tornadoes have destroyed neighborhoods, and families are without homes and without loved ones.

And the NCAA, finally doing something worthwhile, only goes as far as being blatantly obvious and allowing for things that will only be done for football and basketball players.

The NCAA has been given a platform to take a stand.

Now take it.

Force these schools to help students, not just major student-athletes, with families stuck in any of what once was New Orleans, Jefferson Parish, Gulfport, Mobile, the Gulf Coast, or wherever.

Pictures say a thousand words. These just leave me speechless.

Andrew destroyed Florida City and Homestead. This destroyed an entire coast.

Until I see a halfback, shooting guard, soccer goalie, #2 doubles tennis player, and chemical engineering major arriving from Georgia Tech, I’m not going to be satisfied with the NCAA’s decision.

They are taking a stand, but it is easy to sink in the floodwaters.

Pictures say a thousand words. Without phone lines, the families cannot say any.

By bsd987

I have written for since 2004 and was named a featured writer in 2006. I have been Co-Editor of the site since January 1, 2009. I also write for where I am a founding member of the Tennis Roundtable and one of the chief contributors to both the Tennis and Horse Racing sections.

I am "Stat Boy" for's weekly podcast, Poor Man's PTI.

I am currently a Junior at Rice University majoring in History and Medieval Studies. My senior thesis will focus on the desegregation of football in Texas and its affect of racial relations.

Please direct all inquiries to [email protected]

Burton DeWitt
Co-Editor of

11 replies on “Sinking Decision”

comment Your article is written once again well written once again Burt but I have a problem with your idea. How is a University supposed to pay for the in-state student body to travel? That’s a lot of money your talking about. Why can’t the student pay the bus or train fare? It’s just too much for a University. Secondly, you said “…disease is running rampant in the brutal summer heat.” Burton, it isn’t Medievil England here, it’s 2005. I’m pretty sure disease isn’t running rampant. Lastly, as far as I know, Hurricane Andrew wasn’t the only reason your parents got a divorce.

the polluted water the water will be infested with diseases and bacteria.

Secondly, the hurricane sped up my parent’s divorce (they both admit it).

And thirdly, Indiana-Bloomington has a $600m endowment if I remember correctly. UCLA has a $3b endowment. Just a couple of examples. I’m sure they can spare a $40 or so bus ticket.

bsd you had to put IU in there didn’t you :). Anyway, the hurricane could have sped up your parents divorce but I’m pretty sure there was and is a bigger issue that did it.

well duh….. I’m just saying that the Hurricane was one of the causes.

It came on the anniversary of my parents under the name of my father (Andrew), and destroyed our house. We had to move seven times the next two and a half years, and the constant moving caused friction between my parents. Within a year of our house being rebuilt, my parents got seperated.

I would say the hurricane had a lot to do with it….

BSD I would like to show you some of the things you have said that have pissed me off in the last few weeks/months.


Your Preseason Power Rankings had Ohio State ranked 18th. They are one of the top 5 teams in the country. Also in that article you wrote that Michigan was better than Ohio State, well you obviously don’t know anything about these two teams then.


In the article “You heard it Here-2005 predictions” you said this…

“I love your choice of teams. I have ‘Zona, Cinci, and Chicago. Most people think I’m nuts for having those three. Detroit will be competitive, but I don’t think its defense is good enough (or good, period). I think Chicago is much better on defense and has almost as good offense.”

well 2 of those teams look terrible and we dont know about cinci becuase they played the Browns. Secondly you are a nut for picking those teams, The Detroit Lions are much better than the Bears. And Arizona got their ass handed to them by the Giants.


You said in your Preseason power rankings that Micheal Hart was the 2nd best back in the country, well to be honest he’s not even in the top 3. He had 3 carries for 3 yards against notre dame and then walked off the field.


The fact that Cellar Dwellar owns you…


The Fact that Edreed11 bitched you out, and you had no response.


Your Name: Burton DeWitt…

thats all i have to say

CleBrowns79 your first 3 things are legit but the last 3 are just pretty stupid. Firstly, since when does CellarDwellar own him? Secondly, EdReed didn’t bitch him out. He was being an idiot and the reason he had no response was because he was being a mature adult…unlike you. Thirdly, to make fun of his name brings you back to what..1st grade.

refering to the comments on the story entitled…

Exposing The Biggest Myth In Pro Football

if you find that article, scroll down and read the comments, and youll see why cellar dwellar owns him

comment No actually that does not prove that he owns him first of all, it was a discussion on a grammatical error. You really misinterperted the whole thing. Second of all this is not what this site is about!! when are you going to get that this is about sports articles and not arguments or dumb things that you contiunally start.

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