LeGarrette Blount: When "Gone Too Far" Becomes an Understatement

GrahamSenior Analyst ISeptember 4, 2009

SAN DIEGO, CA - DECEMBER 30:   Runningback LeGarrette Blount #9 of the University of Oregon Ducks hurdles a player en route to a touchdown during his team's 42-31 win over the Oklahoma State University Cowboys in the Pacific Life Holiday Bowl at Qualcomm Stadium on December 30, 2008 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Donald Miralle/Getty Images)

Also seen at mvn.com/outsider.

Wednesday night, we witnessed one of the very few things in the period of a year that we can legitimately say made our jaws drop, eyeballs pop, and hands cover our mouths.

LeGarrette Blount made some horrific decisions that drastically changed the course of his NCAA football career (suspended for the rest of a much anticipated Oregon season) and NFL hankerings. Blount connected his knuckles with last night's jokester in the Oregon-Boise State game, Bryon Hout, after being overwhelmed with his unfathomable performance.

When the loss finally hit him square in the noggin, the stomach, the heart, Blount lashed out to a point of no return.

Eyes on fire and body shaking with rage, confusion, and disappointment, he proceeded to skip back a few steps and then do a few hand gestures basically interpreting his dignity (or what he had left of it at that point) and self-respect (though it seemed that he had none last night).

As if Blount could not have acted more delinquent, he then attempted to poke his teammate in the eye through the helmet, in hopes of getting around the restraining players and getting another shot at Hout, who at that point didn't understand what had happened.

In his defense, neither did we. The whole scene had tornado'd so fast that we didn't really experience yet another Blount tantrum until seeing the repeated pictures and videos several times Thursday morning.

But oh no, Blount wasn't done yet. Now with innumerable players, staff, and even police patrol surrounding the flashing "caution" sign that was Blount last night, number nine couldn't quite make it to the locker room without jawing and even trying to get at some of the jeering fans.

While screams and shrieks ran out in the night, Blount finally became enveloped in the darkness of the night and the tunnel. Hunched over in shame, he made his apology and assured everyone that such an incident will never happen again if he can help it.

Even when the shower drops spat at him before his press conference, Blount still didn't fully comprehend what had happened.

He still had an urge to prove himself more to Hout and everyone else watching; not just with a football in his hand and his legs racing down the field, but with a punch so Earth-shattering and destructive that no sane person would ever want to provoke Blount again.

He didn't come to the realization that he had probably just went from an easy first or second rounder and elite running back, to a man in need of anger management and therapy. Some even went as far to say that he's undraftable now after last night's calamitous events.

The bottom line is that Blount made a mistake that may not be forgivable in a short amount of time.

He wandered down a forbidden dusty road where ghouls and demons could snatch him without anybody noticing.

Blount altered his future in a matter of seconds; a future that involved him playing the game he loved and getting millions of dollars for it.

Now, years later, instead of Chris Berman yelling "And Blount with another touchdown!" an aghast office boss could be screaming, "LeGarrette! Where's that graph?!"

His teammates were crestfallen, acerbated, and dumbfounded. He devastated his coaches, who were forced to sit him on the bench for the season. He upset his and Oregon's fans, and set an extremely poor example for a way athletes should behave when being faced with criticism and harassment.

While it wasn't highlighted too much in those replays, you could see in the left corner of a video before Blount encountered the raucous fans a teammate of his yelling back looking somewhat disgusted.

Now whether or not he was yelling at Boise St. or at Blount is not clear, but it appeared that he was up to the very last standing hair on his head with Blount, who has a reputation for complaining and easily becoming piqued.

He has faced suspensions, violated team rules, and notoriously achieved getting on former Ducks head coach Mike Bellotti's (who is now the college's Athletic Director) bad side.

He's also known as an emotional player; a fraction of fans seeing him as a cry baby through their eyes.

Blount, during his apology where he resembled a man whose back was against the wall said, "I lost my head, and I shouldn't have taken it that far."

But the fact of the matter is, LaGarrette, that you took it much further than you think you did. You were a highly recruited stud coming out of college, Ole Miss and West Virginia being heavy pursuers outside of OSU.

Blount simply had it made: a scholarship, a lead spot on one of the nation's biggest football programs, and a 1,000-yard rusher in high school. Blount risked it all in his final year with the organization because he wanted to show everyone who he truly was—a punk, an ungrateful player shielded by teammates and coaches. Well, the curtain was pulled open, LaGarrette. Your colors have been revealed.

You were caught red-handed with your fingers grasping a cookie from the jar.

You were seen sneaking out at midnight when you were supposed to be in bed by 11.

LaGarrette Blount doesn't get the big picture.

LaGarrette Blount can't see the forest for the trees.

LaGarrette Blount is done, because people aren't going to express generosity and hand out a number of other chances after seeing what he just did.

All for a lack of self-control.

Now, he represents those who can't walk past the teasing bullies.

He represents those who can't ignore squawks of banters and heckles.

While Blount was granted to continue going to practice, as well as being able to salvage his scholarship, he lost whatever veneration he had left.

And for what?

Being an example when kids are taught how to retort in the red face of negativity?

This time, he couldn't omit the failure, as coach and college football analyst Lou Holtz told us on today's Outside the Lines.

This time, you crossed the line.

This time, LeGarrette Blount, you went far too far.


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