To play or not Is the question

Published 1:02 pm Wednesday, December 26, 2018

By Brad Greer

More than a dozen college football players have already said they will skip their team’s bowl game to prepare for the NFL draft. West Virginia quarterback Will Grier, LSU cornerback Greedy Williams and most recently Memphis’s Darrell Henderson are just a few that have thrown their name in the pot.

We can thank Christian McCaffrey and Leonard Fournette for starting the trend of players that decided to skip their team’s bowl game rather than risk the chance of injury just a few short months before the NFL Draft.

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So the great debate will go on. Whether to play or not to play is the question. Do you play in a meaningless bowl game (excluding the national championship playoff games of course) and risk blowing a knee out or whatever, or do you finish your college career with your teammates that you have shed blood, sweat and tears with for four or more years?

The choice to me would be quite simple. I would finish what I started four years ago when I signed my name on that national letter of intent and play the last game in a college football uniform.

What is one more game going to hurt? And who’s to say one would have gotten hurt at the beginning of their senior season when you could have easily left after your junior campaign. It’s the risk that is taken.

But on the other side, there is no reason to begrudge any of those players who are simply looking out for their best personal and financial interests and calling it a college career one game early after several years of sacrificing their bodies so others could profit.

Or, here is an idea. A player could decide an hour of two before the bowl game to sit out for draft purposes and the team can say he just rolled his ankle in pregame warmups or something of that nature. I’m sure the NCAA would get wind of it and put the kibosh on that.

Keeping with the college football tune, Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly was named AP Coach-of-the-Year. Say what you want to about the Irish not being affiliated in a conference, but going 4-8 in 2016 to 10-3 last year and 12-0 this season warrants such award.