Brownie Points: Lines blurred, but Pryor wrongs righted - East Valley Tribune: Columns

Brownie Points: Lines blurred, but Pryor wrongs righted

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Jerry Brown is a contributing columnist who appears every Sunday in the Tribune. Contact him at

Posted: Sunday, August 21, 2011 3:15 am | Updated: 2:37 pm, Mon Aug 22, 2011.

Did Terrelle Pryor really think he could sneak away from his college football transgressions and sign a big-money NFL deal without any penalty whatsoever?

Who does he think he is, Pete Carroll?

There are many who think NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell finally crossed a line he has blurred for years. He is forcing Pryor to begin his pro career with the same five-game suspension that would have awaited him had he stayed for his senior season at Ohio State after admitting to a laundry list of transgressions that carpet-bombed the Buckeye program and forced head coach Jim Tressel out.

Since when can college crimes be punished by pro commissioners?

Well, these are extenuating circumstances. Not only was Pryor using the NFL Supplemental draft as a way to start his pro career early, he went back to NCAA investigators a second time to admit to more rules violations — you know, the ones he, um, forgot to cop to in the spring — to prove there was no way he could have stayed eligible in college.

Makes you think that if Goodell wasn’t swayed, Pryor still had a trump card or two in his back pocket to carry the day.

This will lead to more investigations — if the NCAA has anyone left at the office that isn’t sifting through the carnage on South Beach — and extend the cloud over the school.

What does Pryor care? He’s on to the next level, without having to wait out a season. Like he and his four accused teammates who were allowed to play in January’s Sugar Bowl, Pryor was about to skate again.

So Goodell righted a wrong, even if it wasn’t exactly his wrong to right. But when you are so used to suspending guys, you can get carried away. I was hoping he’d suspended Pryor’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, for, well, being Drew Rosenhaus.

Hopefully, the next time a dirty coach like Carroll leaves a college program smoldering (I know, I know, he had no idea Reggie Bush was doing all that stuff...) for a big-money NFL gig, Goodell will remember the precedent he set here.

Howl about that?

Just when you think the Coyotes are a lost cause, a financial wasteland devoid of resuscitation, a real, honest-to-goodness NHL money man comes in to kick the tires and have a look.

Former San Jose Sharks CEO Greg Jamison leads the latest — and by far, the best — group to make a run at Jerry Moyes’ folly.

This isn’t Ice Edge, a bunch of well-do-to fans who didn’t have the money to play fantasy hockey at the highest level. This isn’t Matt Hulsizer, a bargain hunter/dictator who is happy to spend everyone’s money but his own.

Jamison was forced out of San Jose in a management power-play last September, along with most longtime Sharks employees, but he has friends with very deep pockets. He’s a man with a track record of success in a non-traditional hockey market who knows how to put a winner on the ice and butts in the seats. And the common sense to know one is tied to the other.

With an NBA background, Jamison very much mirrors Jerry Colangelo’s business style: Run the show but with other people’s money.

Apparently, he is also coming to the table with a deal that won’t force Glendale to sell bonds.

Will that work for you, Goldwater Institute?

KDUS-AM (1060) reported he’s willing to commit to seven years to make the team profitable before forsaking Glendale once and for all.

Memo to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and Glendale City Manager Ed Beasley: Don’t let this guy leave town without his signature. This is the last scoring chance, Coyotes fans. If the league and the city fail to get this done, someone needs to stand up and explain themselves.

Quick hitters

• As for the University of Miami scandal: The fact a rich little punk ran around buying players anything — and anyone — they wanted doesn’t shock me. I used to watch “Miami Vice,” so I’m hip to the scene and all.

The question is, with all the money and all the big-name recruits and all the advantages, why did they still suck for most of the last decade? At least Jimmy Johnson and Dennis Erickson turned their Sugar Daddies into national titles. What did Nevin Shapiro get for his money?

• Those of us who didn’t think the Diamondbacks had enough offense to win the National League West (six runs in three games against the Phillies, all contributed by first basemen with three-weeks-or-less tenure on the team) are seeing a factor we didn’t count on that may succeed in proving us wrong: The complete collapse of the San Francisco Giants.

Physically, the Giants are a mess. Mentally, they are a mess. Offensively, Carlos Beltran and Orlando Cabrera are making Arizona management look smart for going cheap at the trade deadline. Even the rock-solid pitching staff seems to be wobbling from the weight of carrying the team.

Combine that with Arizona’s knack for winning games they shouldn’t (beating Roy Halladay last Tuesday can be added to the list), and the last two weeks of this season should be wild.

• Jerry Brown is a contributing columnist who appears every Sunday in the Tribune. He can be reached at

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