West Virginia's Pat White, left, and Steve Slaton, right, sit on the bench late in the second half during a 13-9 loss to Pittsburgh in a college football game Saturday, Dec. 1, 2007 in Morgantown, W.Va.
The University of Alabama Crimson Tide is one of America's iconic college football programs, and has been for decades. Folks take their pigskin very seriously down South, and a popular game among many college football fans is speculating about all the various forms of illegal compensation star players may or may not receive to suit-up for schools like 'Bama.
Then former college football star Pat White threw some fuel on that ever-burning fire this week by insinuating on his Facebook page that he was offered a Corvette to play for Alabama after high school.
But we're getting ahead of ourselves — this story actually starts with a current 'Bama footballer named Derrick Henry who is seen as a future star at running back. When he posted this photo to Instagram of his "new baby" named Fiona this week, college football fans immediately got worked up into a righteous lather. How did he get this car? Where did it come from? Was it — gasp — an illegal gift to an unpaid college athlete?
All of that is, of course, rampant speculation and not worth a story. But then White — who finished his college football career at West Virginia in 2008, flamed out in the NFL and now plays professionally in Canada — had to go and make things interesting by posting this on his Facebook page:
White became a West Virginia Mountaineer after high school, starring at quarterback for four straight years. But his story about turning down a Corvette from Alabama or someone affiliated with the school may not hold water.
As pointed out by Clay Travis of Fox Sports, White (who is an Alabama native) did not have a scholarship offer from his home-state school, according to the recruiting site Rivals.
Now, Rivals could have had that wrong. White could be telling the truth. We don't know, and likely never will. But we will conclude this with just two quick points:
- If you're a big-time college football player, best not to gloat about that fresh new ride on Instagram — now matter how you got it.
- It's 2014, and the NCAA has much bigger problems on its hands than worrying about how some college kid got that fresh new ride.
Anything else is missing the forest for the trees.