Posts Tagged ‘Les Miles’

My ten favorite posts of 2011

December 31, 2011

 

There were 112 Ethics Bob  posts in 2011, and 14,000 page views. Here are my ten favorites:

  • Ex-Auburn Prof Jim Gundlach gets a mythical Sam Goldwyn award* for speaking truth to power—to Auburn football http://goo.gl/x3ro4
  • Turks trust strangers, and the trust is repaid http://goo.gl/4UBW6
  • Drew Brees: ethics hero and football hero. He lives by “If not me, who? http://goo.gl/RMzsV
  • Tim Pawlenty announces for President, grabs third rail of Iowa politics, earns mythical Edmund Burke Award. http://goo.gl/yBdXS
  • Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) defends Muslim judge Sohail Mohammed, calls opponents “crazies.” Hooray for an ethics hero http://goo.gl/KtCCQ
  • Three cheers for Bret Baier, Chris Wallace, and Byron York of Fox News, and for Rachel Maddow of MSNBC http://goo.gl/gsXAx
  • Ethics: I’m giving it away http://goo.gl/Rl1jB
  • LSU Tigers Coach Les Miles gets a mythical Chip Kelly Award* for suspending three stars for the big game with Auburn http://goo.gl/rjns5
  • Report from Zuccotti Park, and what’s next for Occupy Wall Street http://goo.gl/Sk5sV
  • Rose Bowl, BCS Bowl, Ethics Bowl http://goo.gl/MxGYu
  • The lesson from Penn State http://goo.gl/Tnn03

 

Trojan coach Lane Kiffin and quarterback Matt Barkley punctuate a new era of amateur football at USC

December 23, 2011

 

So who says big time college football is all about winning and money, and not about heart and sportsmanship? Check out the USC Trojans.

Yesterday Trojan junior quarterback Matt Barkley chose to play another year for the Trojans rather than grabbing a $20+ million payoff for entering the NFL draft, where he was a sure bet to be a top ten, or even a top five pick.

Explained Barkley,

“It is my dream to play quarterback in the NFL, and I intend to make that dream a reality. But I know in my heart that I have not finished my journey as a Trojan football player. The 2012 USC football team has some serious unfinished business to attend to, and I intend on being a part of that.”

Trojan coach Lane Kiffin was overjoyed at Barkley’s decision. And why not? It could well lead to a national championship for the loaded Trojans, and coach-of-the-year honors for Kiffin. But lest you think that Kiffin has only a selfish interest, look at what he said last week when Barkley’s blind-side protector, All American tackle Matt Kalil, announced his decision to forego his senior year for the NFL:

“We fully support his decision and we told him so. He is ready for the NFL. He will be a very high draft pick and will have a long, successful career. We will miss him next year, but will cheer him on (more…)

Rose Bowl, BCS Bowl, Ethics Bowl

December 8, 2011

The bowl season is shaping up well for fans of ethical football, as Les Miles’s LSU Tigers head for the BCS championship at the Sugar Bowl, and Chip Kelly’s Oregon Ducks go to the Rose Bowl. But my favorite is the Ethics Bowl, where the UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs  defeated the Cal State Chico Wildcats Saturday in the West Regionals to go to the National Finals in Cincinnati  on March 1.

The Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl is a team competition that tests the skill of undergrads in analyzing and describing ethical dilemmas. I was privileged to serve as a judge, and see the enthusiasm and determination that students from eight California colleges showed for dealing with ethics.

The students were all volunteers, motivated not by course credit but by their interest in the ethical life. They put in a huge effort to research the fourteen cases used in the competition, and backed up their conclusions with facts and theory.

At a time when so many adults are behaving unethically and so many college competitions are marred by cheating and unsportsmanlike conduct, it’s a joy to see so many millennials working so hard to rise to the challenge of ethics.

If stomping on opposing players’ arms or faces is part of professional ball I’ll stick to college games, thank you.

November 27, 2011

 

I went to the USC-UCLA football game last night, and saw lots of excitement and color—the tailgate feasts, the reunions—planned and unplanned—of old college pals and acquaintances, the bands playing, cheerleaders cheering, and the USC crowd exhorting star quarterback Matt Barkley to return, chanting “One more year.”

Then there was the game: exciting for a while if you were, like me, a Trojan fan, but without suspense as the Trojans won, 50-0.

It was easy to cheer for USC, harder if you were a UCLA fan, but the Bruins have had their day, and will in the future. No mixed feelings as you cheered your team on.

How different if you were a fan of the long-doormat Detroit Lions of the NFL professional football league. The Lions are 7-4, well placed to make the playoffs for the first time since 1999. Their offense is led by quarterback Matt Stafford, their defense by the ferocious Ndamukong Suh.

But it’s no fun cheering for Suh, who along with his formidable talent is one of the dirtiest players in all of football—or any other sport. Thursday in a rage, he stomped on the unprotected arm (more…)

LSU Tigers Coach Les Miles gets a mythical Chip Kelly Award* for suspending three stars for the big game with Auburn

October 21, 2011

Sport is supposed to build character, but college sport often puts winning above sportsmanship or ethics. So it’s encouraging to see a big-time coach put character first. It’s especially encouraging when the stakes are huge.

LSU’s Tigers are undefeated at 7-0, and ranked #1 in the nation. Tomorrow they play improving and dangerous Auburn. LSU needs a win to preserve their path to the national championship.

LSU’s chances dropped a notch Wednesday when Coach Les Miles suspended three key players, reportedly for drug violations. The three included two considered the Tigers’ most valuable: cornerback and Heisman Trophy contender Tyrann Mathieu (six forced turnovers, including two returned for touchdowns), and star running back Spencer Ware (512 yards and six touchdowns). Defensive back Tharoid Simon (one interception and 29 tackles) was also suspended. The suspensions are for at least one game; if Miles extends them it could be devastating to the Tigers since their next game is at Alabama, ranked #2 in the nation.

Miles has been criticized for failing to control his players, but he deserves a lot of credit for putting character above winning. I don’t know whether to root for LSU to win to show that ethics pays off; or to root for them to lose to demonstrate just how much coach Miles put at risk to enforce LSU’s rules of behavior.

In any case, Coach Miles gets a Chip Kelly Award for putting character above winning.

__________

*Chip Kelly, Oregon Ducks football coach, suspended his star running back for poor sportsmanship right after Kelly’s first game as Ducks coach


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