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Reilly's latest is appalling.

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by sirvaliantbrown, Nov 19, 2007.

  1. I can't figure out how to find it online, but I trust most of you have already read it. In summary: in an X-Y-X-Y format, he contrasts the lifestyle of Ohio State linebacker Marcus Freeman - plush room, plush locker room, big meals, free entertainment galore - with that of Charles Murphy, an unemployed and homeless Columbus carpenter.

    In order for the piece to "work," Reilly had to find a single OSU player to compare with Murphy. But, by doing so, he made that lone OSU player into the villain of the piece - implicitly suggesting, or at least not going out of his way to NOT suggest, that the player is somehow responsible for this sad state of societal affairs...when that player did nothing but avail himself, as anyone in the world would have done, of luxuries that had been offered to him.

    That's cheap as hell - and almost comically unfair to the player, who did nothing more questionable than respond to an innocent-seeming interview request from Rick Reilly. If Freeman was the CEO of a major corporation that had recently laid off Murphy, the contrast-device might have been reasonable - cliched, Moore-esque, but (maybe) reasonable. Since the two guys have absolutely nothing to do with each other, it's absurd.
  2. Bucknutty

    Bucknutty Member


    I'll have to look for it now, but Freeman's one of the nicest guys on the team. If what you're saying is true (not doubting it, just haven't seen it), then that's a darn shame.
  3. Haven't read it yet. The column the week before - about why he writes sports - was really very good.
  4. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    Why couldn't he have picked on a student-athlete at his alma mater Colorado?
  5. Ha. Because he read in the Wall Street Journal two weeks ago that OSU has the largest athletic budget in the country.

    I meannn...it's eminently reasonable to pick on a $109 million (!!!) athletic budget. Just pick on the right people about it.
  6. While I'm here: I also (secondarily) dislike the column's implicit endorsement of the notion of a guns-or-butter trade-off between the OSU athletic budget and Ohio's social problems.

    Given the structural problems with the state's economy, it's not as if the elimination of the Buckeyes' foosball tables would make the Charles Murphys of Columbus not-poor.
  7. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    And while you can argue that too much money is being spent on athletics, it is being spent, which helps the local economy and not hidden in an off-shore account or used to shore up a sagging stock price.
    Speaking of which, is Reilly next going to take on ESPN's lush digs and the amount it spends on formerly decent writers while exploiting student athletes?
  8. Shaggy

    Shaggy Guest

    I'm never one to bag on Reilly. I think he's a phenomenal talent.

    But that column was a bad idea executed even worse. I agree, Freeman was picked on and he did nothing to deserve it.
  9. Whoa.
    SOMEBODY had to be the point of comparison, and the comparison was legitimate.
    Not an artfully written piece, but unobjectionable as a concept.
  10. dooley_womack1

    dooley_womack1 Well-Known Member

    If not used on OSU athletics, that 109 million would almost certainly not be going to help street people.
  11. Stoney

    Stoney Well-Known Member

    I haven't read the piece yet, but with the nation's largest athletic budget, I'd say Ohio State's an excellent choice as the center of a piece on misplaced priorities in relation to college athletics. Schools like OSU can be fairly analogized to the Yankees for the way they force everyone else to also overspend on sports (and cut spending on other necessary areas) just to stay competitive.
  12. PHINJ

    PHINJ Active Member

    I didn't RTFA, but there's nothing more obnoxious than sanctimony from million dollar sports writers complaining about society spending too much money on sports.

    (well, arguably anonymous Net posters who don't RTFA they're bitching about)
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