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USC football can't win for losing

That damn boy is dumber than a wristwatch.
-Kenny Masenda

You know how stupid you have to be for Ken to publicly say that a Rolex’s cognitive abilities are superior to yours? Yeah, pretty damn stupid.

And that’s where we currently are with Marc Tyler, USC’s running back who made comments about USC players being paid more than the pros. According to a drunk Tyler, USC is “breaking bread” and is the “University of Sexual Ballers.” I’m going to ignore that the acronym doesn’t quite add up, but point out the fact that this is exactly the opposite publicity USC needs at the point.

The Trojans are going into their second season with a scholarship reduction and a ban on all bowl games because of scandals involving the once prolific Reggie Bush. With nothing to really play for outside of pride, you’d assume the boys from Southern Cal -- especially the upperclassmen -- would understand that being on their best behavior with the NFL calling. Nah, ole buddy went out, got drunk and told TMZ that USC was paying him Arab Money.

At some point, you have to realize who you are, where you are and what you have at stake. Marc Tyler is a guy who could go in the early rounds of the NFL draft, but could potentially fall much further than expected not only because of this, but because he’s going to miss fall practices and the opening game of the season. To understand these implications is to understand that USC is literally called “running back university.” Tyler could easily find himself 2nd or 3rd on the Trojan depth chart, and he might not be able to find his way back to the top.

Tyler was already struggling for playing time for USC last season and will have Curtis McNeal and Dillon Baxter rushing like madmen to try and keep him off the field. It’s not that Tyler was stupid for saying that about ‘SC, but it was down right disrespectful considering all that the program has done for him.

During his senior season in high school, Marc broke his leg before he had actually signed with the program. Pete Carroll honored his verbal commitment and still gave him the scholarship. Throughout his years as a Trojan, he’s battled injuries and has come into camp overweight, and USC continued to give him chance after chance… and he repays them by saying they’ve paid him while the school is serving suspension about these very allegations with another elite running back?

I know that I’ve done some stupid things that I’d probably reconsider if given the opportunity to do them over. Marc is still just a kid at 22 years old, but when you’re the star running back at "running back university," some sort of responsibility has to be understood for you to and your program to be successful. Tyler is probably the best running back USC is going to have to offer next year, and his stupidity isn’t just going to hurt him, but it’s going to hurt USC, his teammates and his family.

We can only hope this kid learns from his mistake. He seemed hard on himself in interviews after the incident. Acknowledging that he mad a mistake is the first step in making sure that this doesn’t become a slippery slope of bad decisions. I still wish him the best, but please smarten up, Marc.

-P. Barnett


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