Do the best players get to play for Dan Hawkins' CU Buffs?
The folks at Mile High Sports Radio found an interesting archival bite related to five-star recruit Darrell Scott's decision to leave the CU Buffs. Shortly after the team's one impressive victory this season (against Kansas), Mile High host Les Shapiro asked embattled coach Dan Hawkins if he was afraid Scott might jump ship owing to a lack of playing time. Hawkins, proving his prescience, said "no" before talking about how the current generation of ballers are obsessed with immediate gratification and don't understand that the struggle of waiting a year or two for their big opportunity can make them better people as well as better players.
Dan Hawkins has a lot to say -- except about Darrell Scott.
Which is all very inspirational. But Hawkins' comments seemed to imply that even if a freshman or a sophomore is better than a junior or a senior, he'll have to bide his time before getting much lineup time -- and that is, to put it mildly, insane. Football is a meritocracy. The best players belong on the field; they shouldn't have to work their way through some kind of antiquated seniority system before getting their chance. The idea is to win, and if that means giving Scott the ball over a back who's been there a couple of years longer, then do it.
Yes, Scott's had to deal with numerous injuries during his CU time, as Hawkins' dwindling number of apologists continue to emphasize. But if, upon his recovery, he knew he'd be relegated to the bench for arbitrary dues-paying reasons, he was right to fly away from the Hawk.