The 12/02/02, Sports Illustrated has a great article by the best damn sportswriter, Gary Smith.
The short of it is that Devaughn Darling, Florida State linebacker, died while he was doing boot camp style mat drills during a practice. It is similar to how Korey Springer of the Vikings died. Then the University tried to sweep it under the rug. They got an autopsy to say he died of natural causes. Then they wouldnít let his twin brother, Devard Darling, play for the team anymore because they didnít want to be reminded of their screwup. Now the brother is having a great year at Washington State as a receiver and the parents are suing the school.
It makes you wonder why the coach isnít held accountable when his actions directly result in his playerís death.
Really though. How could you prove that coach was directly responsible for the death. There would have to be overwhelming evidence linking a death to overexertion, overexposure, dehydration, etc. before you could even think about laying the blame on the staff, and then you have to take into account whether or not the player took any preventative steps.
While staffs should keep a sharper eye on the condition of the players they cannot be blamed for most on-field deaths to date and probably any unforseen and untimely passings in the future. There are just too many variables to automatically blame one person or staff in these instances, though the FSU case does sound a tad odd.
Wrestling gets a bad rep for it's athletes dying young, and I'm not saying it's not deserved. But I heard stories that cases like this isn't that unusual in highschool and college football, and a lot of players shortly after retiring pass away in a relatively young age.
Originally posted by Big BadI thought the player afraid of being outed was a riff on Mike Piazza.
It might have been, but the blackmailer was an editor for a gay magazine, IIRC. And my theory is that the guy who was having the affair with the editor for Out is Brady Anderson. I remember reading in SI that he's become a pretty big icon in the gay community, and he didn't exactly do much to deflect those rumors...
So it became a variation on Super Bowl XXV after all:
The Super Bowl is played in a warm, waterside community (Tampa/New Orleans) at a time of war (Gulf War/War On Terrorism) and is suffused in patriotic gestures.