Griz pre-game let down

by Pete Talbot

Woke up this morning, put on my Grizzly hoodie and then opened up the daily fishwrap.

The alleged sexual assault by at least three UM football players is above the fold and the administration is stonewalling.  Roofies, the rape drug, may be involved.  Great.  Kind of takes the wind out of our sails just hours before kickoff of the semifinal FCS playoff game, not to mention the trauma visited on the two alleged women victims.

Here’s the skinny.  The comments after the story give some insight into the community’s reaction, that is until they deteriorate into Monday morning quarterback banter.  I have a feeling that jhwygirl will do a more in-depth piece here at 4&20. She’s been following Grizzly football antics for years.  Sometimes I think she’s a bit too harsh but in this case: go get ’em.

I realize that folks are presumed innocent until proven guilty but this reeks.  If the players who are potentially involved in this assault suit up for the game, and are later charged and convicted, the fallout could be, rightfully, disastrous (as in UM’s administrators and coaches suffering the same consequences as did Penn State’s).  I’ll wait for more facts to come out but if indeed an assault occurred, may those who committed it face the full brunt of the law.

  1. Turner

    I plan to watch the game on tv tonight. I’d be shocked to see some of the usual starters not suiting up.

    But it could happen, I suppose.

    In an alternative universe.

  2. Craig Moore

    Pete, I advise caution here. The first comment to the Missoulian article quotes a markedly different account of the incident in the Billings Gazette.

    • petetalbot

      I appreciate the tip, Craig, and here’s the story you’re referring to. I am being cautious. The fact that a Montana Supreme Court Justice has been called in to investigate, that Foley and O’day can’t be reached for comment, and that reporter Gwen Florio has a solid reputation, leads me to believe that this is more than just innuendo. I honestly hope I’m wrong, though.

  3. Chuck

    You have fallen for the crap that you know is publised by the Missoulian and like J-grl have jumped to conclusions.
    Check the latest from the remarkably different account from the Gazette as Craig mentioned. Better yet post that article here.

  4. The most telling comment left at the Missoulian was from the person who claimed ‘The only worse than rape is a false accusation’. Anyone who doesn’t think we live in a culture that defends rape should be forced to write book defending the stupidity of that very statement.

  5. We wouldn’t be having these discussions if the U of M would get rid of football, basketball — of all intercollegiate athletics — and concentrate on academics and academics only.

    Penn State, Glacier High, U of M…where there is football there are almost always players who deserve a stay in the hoosegow and plenty of employment for defense lawyers.

    • James, you are correct that if UM would get rid of football we wouldn’t be having these discussions. Then, the rapes would be perpetrated by run-of-the mill frat boys, and that would likely be beneath notice.

      In truth, I think you are equating correlation and causation. I seriously don’t mean to be too harsh here, but let’s be terribly clear: Rapists cause rape. Not football, or fraternities or wanton sluts wearing too short skirts. Rapists cause rape. There are cultures in which it is more ‘acceptable’ and more easily defended, quite obviously as this case demonstrates. Removing the facets that more readily defend and hide the behavior, (football, fraternities, bars, the police) won’t solve the greater cultural problem of rapists choosing to rape and being defended for it.

      For every school you name that harbors bad people, I can name 20 that do not have current scandals. That doesn’t mean that bad people aren’t still there, but it does mean that the culture is different. Right here at MSU, we had us a bit of a violence and drug problem related to athletics. Now we don’t. The culture changed. We still have rapists. We still have drug-dealers. But the current culture of athletics does not accept that behavior. To get there, we had to fire a coach and pay $250,000 for the change. Getting rid of Kramer? Money well spent.

      I would not at all argue that something needs to change at UM. But getting rid of athletics ain’t the answer. It’s simply sweeping the problem under the rug to where no one notices it exists.

      • Thanks for reminding me about the frats. They have to go, too. But I disagree with the notion that there’s a baseline level of student rape that exists regardless of the presence of intercollegiate athletics.

        Furthermore, I don’t believe that any cleanup of athletics lasts very long. Football especially is an authoritarian activity that prizes obedience, worships strength (might makes right), and instills in both coaches (who often are paid more than the college president) and players a sense of entitlement and freedom from social norms. It’s a dirty business with boodles of money that attracts gamblers, nurtures hubris, and ultimately corrupts. We tend to learn about it when the festering infection bursts through the skin of silence, but the sickness is always there.

        Eliminating intercollegiate athletics is the best cure, the only sure cure. Institutions not willing to take that cure can try the medicine I prescribe in:

        • jackruby

          I dont think I’ve ever read a more accurate description off football Mr. Conner. That being said…Monday Night football tonight! Going to be a great game!

      • Ingemar Johansson

        Sounds like the frat boys I use to hang with.

        “According to Ronald and Steven Holmes, “Most rapists tend to be young … with most under age 25. Many come from low economic backgrounds and are members of minority groups; most choose victims of their own race …. Many rapists’ psycho-sexual backgrounds include histories of conflict and other trouble with women … marked inability to relate to women personally and sexually.”

  1. 1 Is UM Violating the Civil Rights of Victim and Accused? « 4&20 blackbirds

    […] don’t you know Pete’s correct – I’m going there. This is just one of probably several things I’ll have to say […]

  2. 2 Racism, Sexism, and Just Plain Dumb « Montana Cowgirl Blog

    […] are due to friend of women Pete Talbot for calling out the idiocy in the comments following the Missoulian’s article on the “3 […]

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