Andre Smith Drops the Ball

12Correspondent IFebruary 22, 2009

On the heels of missing the biggest college football bowl game in his career, and his University’s biggest bowl game in many, many seasons, Andre Smith has dropped the ball—again.

After being sent home from the 2009 Sugar Bowl, disappointing his teammates, fans and University, Smith makes another boneheaded move and doesn’t show up for the NFL combine.

What? You’re about to have the most important evaluation, or interview if you will, in your entire sports career, and you don’t show up? How in the world can you let this happen?

I’ve got to admit I had many questions about the incident surrounding the Sugar Bowl debacle, where it was rumored Smith had illegally contacted an agent. I had heard Smith never actually spoke to an agent himself, but a family member, or maybe two, had made that brilliant move.

I believed Smith's innocence then, and I gave him the benefit of the doubt. Sure, he should have contacted his head coach immediately after hearing about it, but still I didn’t think he was 100 percent responsible for the error in judgment.

This action, however, makes me question this young man’s accountability.

How can you not want to come to the NFL combine in shape for the event that might shape your entire football career?

Something is terribly wrong with this. The people who are advising Smith are either not able to influence his decisions correctly, or they are as naïve as the young player himself.

Alvin Kells is his agent, and there are lots of questions to be answered here. Why didn’t Kells emphasize the importance of a great combine workout to Smith?

He was said to be in the top 10 draft picks overall, and the No. 1 tackle. Now his stock will significantly drop, and his future will be adversely affected by this very unintelligent action.

It’s a shame to see young men like Smith making these kind of mistakes so early in life. It makes me now question how he will handle the pressures of the highly competitive NFL.

I’m pulling for you, Andre, but young man, you had better make some changes in your mindset and get your act together.