‘Cause I got high, ’cause I got high, ’cause I got high…

You’ve gotta love this:

… One NFL head coach told me this week that in this era of some states decriminalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes, he has interviewed potential draft picks who didn’t even seem to recognize their marijuana smoking constituted drug use in the eyes of the NFL.

“It’s pretty significant as a trend,” the head coach said. “But if you knocked everyone off your board who has experimented with weed, you’d lose about 20 percent of your board, not to mention disqualify a few recent presidents. A third sounds a little high to me, but it’s not a rare occurrence to have a player with some pot use in his background. You have to make a judgment on each individual guy.”

… Some players suspected of marijuana use in college in recent years, Philadelphia receiver DeSean Jackson and Minnesota receiver-return man Percy Harvin most notably, have been two of the top offensive players in the draft the past two years. Their early success in the NFL has possibly led some teams to take a more lenient approach to drafting talented players who are suspected of collegiate marijuana use, one team front office executive said.

“If you passed on Jackson and you passed on Harvin the past two years, maybe you can’t afford to just completely write off that kind of prospect every time, or you won’t have a job at some point because you won’t win any games,” one team front office executive said…

I doubt the scales balance very differently on the college level.

33 Comments

Filed under Crime and Punishment, The Body Is A Temple

33 responses to “‘Cause I got high, ’cause I got high, ’cause I got high…

  1. UFTimmy

    Only 20% have experimented? That seems awfully low to me.

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    • Carruthers

      I’m a junior at UGA, and I remember the Red and Black (student newspaper), did an anonymous survey which was quite large (I think over 2,000 students) where they asked one question, and one question only to students. “Have you ever smoked marijuana?” 74% answered they had smoked at some point in their life. Now, I know UGA’s a party school but that’s just shy of 3/4’s in a very large sample size. Those kids probably weren’t all athletes, but I wouldn’t be suprised if college football players weren’t that far off. Who even knows how many of those 74% smoke regularly, haha.

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  2. Phocion

    Yeah, and look at how many guys get in trouble with the law because of a fight here or there and a shove or two to the girlfriend. Gotta make an exception for the guys that do that but have high potential!

    *****

    Breaking a law/rule is breaking a law/rule. I don’t care which one it is. In this case it involves criminal activity, not just team rules. If the NFL is going to lower the bar by stating that they are okay with certian kinds of criminal activity then when do they stop EXPANDING (to use a term-dujour around here) which rules they’ll make exceptions for? And for which players?

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    • NCT

      Whether a particular NFL team is lenient on a prospect for his prior pot use has less to do with rewarding/punishing those who run afoul of the law and/or rules and more to do with undertaking the risk that the prior use will cause problems with future violations of NFL rules.

      And I don’t think it’s that slippery of a slope. Like it or not, marijuana use has been getting more and more acceptable over the last many, many years. Yes, it’s criminal. So is driving 40 in a 35 or an exiting improperly from an alley. One can rationally argue that smoking weed is different from those other kinds of crimes, but a steadily increasing number of people believe it’s not *that* much different.

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      • Phocion

        You could say the same thing about steroid use.

        Or cocaine in the 80’s.

        Better yet, ask your grandmother about how many people she knew when she was 20, 30, or so that smoked cigarettes. Times and fashions change…and that is a substance that has been legal the entire time.

        There is no need to adjust one’s morals or accept the degradation of societal norms just because of the manufactured popularity of certain criminal activities at this particular moment in history.

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  3. Dawgaholic

    Phocion,

    We have so many laws that most of us break at least one every day. Especially if you leave the house.

    The individuals who never possessed alcohol before age 21 are a small group too.

    Most people don’t ever commit felonies. There is a difference there. The line has been drawn. If you can’t tell the difference in drinking underage, speeding, or smoking a joint and burglarizing a house or armed robbery, then you probably have a hard time differentiating your a$$ from a hole in the ground.

    PS – I understand that smoking a joint is a lot different from speeding; however, it’s a lot closer to speeding than the other serious crimes.

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    • Phocion

      Conflating alcohol and cigarettes with controlled substances doesn’t make the arguement any more valid.

      Underage drinking is more like speeding…drinking is legal when you are 21 and not standing on the street corner. Doing 60mph is legal when you are at least 16 and not in a school zone.

      Unauthorized use/possession of a controlled substance is always illegal.

      If you want to use the lame ‘medical marijuana’ excuse…would you think the same about it if he were popping Vicodin or OxyContin for fun?

      Drug habits are drug habits. Let’s not make excuse for guys that run fast or can wrap up a tackle.

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      • hailtogeorgia

        Phocion, saying that drinking is legal when you turn 21 and that going 60 is legal when you turn 16 and aren’t in a school zone is completely incongruent with your argument. You can’t beat the drum of “breaking a law/rule is breaking a law/rule, I don’t care which one it is” and then turn right around and act like something that’s always illegal is worse than something that is dependent upon age/circumstance.

        If you’re going to support the straight and narrow, you have to be just as hard on those who drank underage as you are on those who smoked pot.

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        • Phocion

          But you have to make distinction between the types/severity of the crime being committed.

          After all, there is speeding and then there is speeding. 60 in a 35 gets you a ticket…100 in 35 gets you a ride to jail.

          The courts/law/parents similarly see an M.I.P differently than getting caught with a dime bag.

          My point with speeding and drinking was that under certain common circumstances that action is entirely legal. In no way is the use of marijuana.

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          • Rick

            But if marijuana is illegal, then drinking should be a felony. It’s a far worse substance to ingest in most respects.

            Why should it matter what is illegal when the laws are foolish?

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            • JasonC

              If you feel so strongly about this then I suggest you start another prohibition movement.

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              • Rick

                No, because I believe that unless there is a very compelling argument otherwise, laws should prohibit behaviors which violate the freedoms of others.

                But you should certainly feel free to obey the whims of the majority. In some places it’s called Sharia.

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        • JasonC

          I love all the post modern relativism used up here to attack Phocion.

          1. If the way we feel or the way a group of people feel about a law is the only thing that matters, then I could shoot Prov or NCT and say, “in my opinion killing isn’t that bad. In fact, I hear about people killing people all the time on WSB, so I know other people do it. And you shouldn’t come down on me just because my views are different than yours.”

          2. For the argument that we all break laws… you are probably right, but that doesn’t excuse it. Furthermore, one breaks the law knowing there is a risk of penalty. Now if you want to debate the harshness of the penalty, that is a different matter, but underage drinking, smoking pot and wild-scootering are all against the law, so you either need to change the laws or risk the penalty. If I speed, I look out for cops because I know if they catch me, I will pay a price.

          Therefore, because smoking pot is both illegal and against NFL and NCAA substance abuse laws, if a player does it, he should fully expect to be penalized.

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          • Prov

            I was really just being ignora…err sarcastic.

            I think we should obey the laws. Except for the law about disengaging the spark plug of your automobile when you are in the presence of a horse…that would be a pain. Of course the law prohibiting women from appearing unshaven in public (legs or face) makes perfect sense.

            I also think that laws prohibiting what consenting adults do in the privacy of their homes are a waste of time.

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            • I also think that laws prohibiting what consenting adults do in the privacy of their homes are a waste of time.

              Amen, brother. Plus enforcement of same is an incredible waste of resources that we can afford less and less these days.

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              • Mayor of Dawgtown

                I do not want toget on a soapbox, but one of the biggest problems is the passage of laws that outlaw conduct the public does not feel should be against the law. A good example is the former 55 mph speed limit on the Interstates and other highways. EVERYONE drove faster than that making the whole country a nation of lawbreakers. (That still exists by the way. The speed limit on all the Interstates inside I-285 and on I-285 itself is still 55.) Nutball laws passed by Congress and our state legislature cause disrespect for the law generally and undermine the public’s confidence in government and law enforcement.

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              • Phocion

                To use a response of yours from another thread…go read Raich and see that the government already does such a thing in a way you approve of when it comes to other political/legal issues.

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  4. Prov

    I started to read this post, but got distracted by the size of my hands. What’s this all about now?

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  5. dawgfish

    If hittin’ the binger keeps them at home and off of those menacing scooters, then I’m all for it. And echoing NCT, NFL teams only care about what the prospects are doing as it relates to on-field performance and/or getting into trouble with the league, not whether its illegal. They aren’t the police. Bet they wouldn’t mind someone like Big Ben picking up a weed habit in exchange for drinking, might keep him at home watching Adult Swim rather than out making friends with 19 yr olds in Milledgeville

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  6. Hennigan

    If the scales don’t balance you got screwed by your dealer.

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  7. simpl_matter

    Ahhh Pot, the 12 yr. old child thrown in prison with rapists and murderers.

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  8. RusDawg

    I want some cheetos.

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  9. Hogbody Spradlin

    I gotta think about this one. I have a teenager with a free streak in him, and I live in a small town where there isn’t much for them to do.

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  10. Pumpdawg

    It’s 4:20 somewhere.

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  11. ausdawg85

    2 words for passing on a “high” draft prospect….Ricky Williams. Possibly the only guy that could get Ditka to wear a wedding dress.

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  12. Hoshney

    Pretty sad that this would be a huge factor for teams but it is due to the drug policy

    If they didn’t test for this, I doubt it would make a damn bit of difference

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  13. Derek

    Personally, I’ve never understood why professional teams test for illicit drug use. Drugs for performance enhancement is a different issue because that is a issue effecting competition. It seems to me that the leagues just try to avoid the bad press that comes when someone gets busted by the police, but the test results come out much more frequently than arrests so it looks even worse from a PR standpoint.

    The point being that if the Giants think that LT can smoke crack and still whip left tackles, then that between LT and the NY Giants. Its just not the public’s concern in my view.

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  14. AntDawg

    1. Only 20%?… As a college student I can say that number is much lower than I would expect. I guess it may be be lower for athletes of such a high caliber because if they are truly committed to being the best they can be they wouldn’t mess around with marijuana (or alcohol for that matter, no matter the age). But let’s be real, I don’t really think that is the majority case as they are still kids which is why that number is surprisingly low.

    While I can’t accurately say what the real percentage is for all college students, if I had to guess it would be more like 50%. And I think thats conservative. And if you were to sample only guys (as opposed to both guys and girls) that number goes up. Also if you were to sample all college aged kids instead of just those in college that number goes up.

    2. I’m not going to call anyone out specifically, but if you think its logical that marijuana is illegal, while alcohol is legal (21+ or not) then you are either ignorant, inexperienced, or misinformed.

    I know plenty of people of all social circles who have either tried it or do it occasionally. I know people who won’t do it, and I know people who do it too much. It’s just like anything else, you take it too far, its going to affect your life. So if you choose never to do it thats fine, but don’t use the law as your excuse when you break others.

    3. Back to the topic specifically, if a great athlete has a so-called “history” of marijuana use, that is no reason not to draft them. But you make sure as a coach, GM, owner, and organization that the athlete knows they better not be doing it during the season, or any time before. It’s not the pot that makes some athletes make dumb decisions. It’s them (cough, MIKE VICK, cough).

    Thoughts…?

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  15. Chuck

    I am confident I am one of the older guys here, and I say decriminalize/legalize, and spend the money, time, and resources that have been devoted to catching folks and screwing up their lives for something more useful.

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