July 22 Talking Points
Friday, July 22, 2011
What’s the buzz from the world of sports? Here are some items that will have people talking:
Oregon coach Chip Kelly faces reporters on Tuesday in Los Angeles at the preseason media day for the reconfigured Pac-12. It’s going to be hard for Oregon to maintain its silence on the Willie Lyles-Texas recruiting scandal much longer as football season nears and the Ducks garner lot of attention due to their high ranking in the polls.
Oregon recently confirmed that it retained the legal services of Bond, Schoeneck & King. Former NCAA enforcement staffer Michael Glazier leads the firm’s Collegiate Sports Practice Group, which has become known for representing schools facing NCAA infractions. This is the biggest controversy Oregon has faced in recent memory, although Kelly has proven adept at shielding his team from past distractions.
Kelly has kept the team focused with his trademark “Win The Day” mantra, and the Ducks deflected much of the negative attention by winning back-to-back Pac-10 championships and playing in the national title game.
While quick to address past crises, Kelly has not said much about Lyles.
“Win The Day” won’t likely suffice as a response when he faces reporters in Los Angeles.
What we can now say without a doubt is that Lyles is not a victim here, as he tried to portray himself when he — selectively — spilled his guts to Yahoo! Sports, writes Ted Miller of ESPN. He continues:
“If you were making a list of young men in the state of Texas who most needed a mentor, you’d have to go through several million before you arrived at (LaMichael) James or fellow Ducks running back Lache Seastrunk. It doesn’t really seem that cynical to note that Lyles’ choice of acolytes seems curiously self-interested based on his chosen profession.
“James and Seastrunk would both be playing football for a BCS program today even if they had not met Lyles. Of that you can be certain. So let’s not act as if his behind-the-scenes work for them functioned as game-saving, selfless gestures.”