ESPN Goes to Pot

A typical backyard in Eugene. Just kidding.

The good people at ESPN are shocked – shocked, I tell you! – to discover that some college athletes are smoking marijuana. The intrepid reporter, Mark Schlabach, reveals that:

    NCAA statistics show a bump in the number of stoned athletes. In the NCAA’s latest drug-use survey, conducted in 2009 and released in January, 22.6 percent of athletes admitted to using marijuana in the previous 12 months, a 1.4 percentage point increase over a similar 2005 study.

Only 22.6 percent? It seems to me that we have a crisis of honesty among student athletes, although the situation has improved by 1.4 percent since 2005. Schlabach continues:

    Some 26.7 percent of football players surveyed fessed up, a higher percentage than in any other major sport.

If I knew that 300-lb guys were about to repeatedly run into me, I think I would want some medication beforehand myself.

What really annoys me about all this, however, is that they’ve singled out my alma mater, the University of Oregon for abuse. Sam Alipour has written an article, in which he claims to rip the lid off the modern-day Sodom & Gomorrah that is Eugene:

    Nowhere is Oregon’s laissez-faire approach to marijuana more apparent than Eugene, the state’s counterculture and cannabis capital. “Business here is almost overwhelming,” says a student-dealer who lives on — no joke — High Street. “Here, everybody smokes.” Not surprisingly, The Princeton Review and High Times both have ranked the University of Oregon among the most pot-friendly schools. Another telltale, anecdotal sign: Into the 1990s, the Grateful Dead made Autzen Stadium a regular tour stop. “It’s the weed capital of the world,” says former Duck Reuben Droughns. “Long dreads. Girls with hairy armpits. Where there’s hippies, there’s weed.”

This offends not only my sense of civic pride, but my sense of chivalry as well. None of the women I know have hairy armpits. None. (I would demand satisfaction from this person, Droughns, were it not for the fact that he’s probably a lot bigger than I am.) And I have met maybe three people with dreadlocks since I moved here. Also, I met a lot more pot smokers when I lived in Boston, “the Hub of the Universe”. (There’s a drug joke in there somewhere, I just haven’t figured out what it is yet.)

Alipour also quotes a unnamed member of the UO football team, who says he and a bunch of other players got stoned just before the Rose Bowl game. Well, they won, didn’t they? Maybe they should get stoned before every game. Then maybe we won’t have any more embarrassing losses, such as the ones to LSU and USC.

Just a suggestion.

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