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TQ - Would You Take Ryan Perrilloux?
Ryan Perrilloux
Ryan Perrilloux
Posted May 13, 2008

Tuesday Question ... Would You Take Ryan Perrilloux On Your Team?

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Pete Fiutak     

Q: Would you take Ryan Perrilloux on your team?

: Maybe I missed it, but did Perrilloux get charged with raping anyone? Drugs? How about assault and battery? Well, there was the incident outside of a night club, but he wasn't charged with anything. Did he get nailed with steroids? Gun charges? Leaving the toilet seat up? Using a fake ID to get into a casino? Well, yeah on the last one, but I can't exactly throw stones at that glass house. I had a mustache on mine.

Fine, so he's a doorknob who might not be the brightest bulb on the Christmas tree, blowing his big shot at leading a national title contender by not going to class and missing some workouts, but it's not like he's been nailed with doing anything horrifically bad compared to some past players who ended up getting another shot like Willie Williams or Lawrence Phillips.

He's also one of the most talented quarterbacks in college football.

If I'm an all-timer of a head coach, like a Bobby Bowden or a Joe Paterno, I'll take Perrilloux because even if he fails, my reputation is fine. I'm trying to save a kid's career.

If I'm a rising head coach, like a Brian Kelly at Cincinnati, I'll roll the dice and hope I can catch lightning in a bottle. This is a talented enough kid to take my program from good to great.

If I'm a coach of a lousy team, I'll take Perrilloux in a heartbeat. What do I have to lose? Oh yeah, my integrity and my reputation, but again, the guy is really, really good.

So this might not be the right attitude to take when it comes to pampered, spoiled athletes who always get their own way and never have to pay for their mistakes. Again, it's not like he's a felon or a wanton criminal, he's a pampered, spoiled athlete. Sorry, but so are most of the superstars in the history of sports, with almost all masked by a great PR department.

So go ahead and feign your righteous indignation. Deep down, you really want to win, and if you don't there's someone else out there waiting to do it for you. College football is about winning, and if you don't believe that, ask the coaches who get canned even though they graduate 84% of their players.

And by the way, Rhett Bomar is also welcome on my team.

Richard Cirminiello      

Q: Would you take Ryan Perrilloux on your team?

A: Not even if he paid his own way and arrived gift wrapped. 

Ryan Perrilloux wasn’t a kid that made a mistake, the kind that can be chalked up to youthful indiscretion and overcome with a stretch of good behavior.  Those types of cases occur every year and in most programs without notoriety.  No, Perrilloux was a problem of a different kind, a repeat offender that thumbed his nose at the LSU program with no indication that his juvenile behavior was about to change.  Sure, he’s as physically gifted as any quarterback in the country, but to be the total package, you’ve got to be all there above the neck as well as below it.  That’s especially true when you’re the quarterback, the face of the program.  In the case of Perrilloux, history indicates that his next transgression would be a matter of “when” not “if”.  In a team sport, that’s way too much risk associated with a young man who’s proven to be a ticking time bomb for years.  Maybe the next time he blows it, it’s the night before SEC title game, or he takes a few impressionable teammates down the wrong path with him. 

Hey, Perrilloux might be a great kid, a misunderstood star who’s a few lessons of tough love from being on the straight and narrow.  I don’t know.  I’ve never met him.  What I do know is that he’s shown a pattern of behavior that’s potentially destructive to the fabric of a team.  How do you preach discipline and a team concept with a player like Perrilloux sitting in the locker room?  How do you avoid waking up in a cold sweat wondering where No.11 is with Alabama looming on the schedule?  The risk outweighs the reward for players, such as Perrilloux.  If I’m a head coach, I’d rather spend my energy developing a quarterback that has a little more respect for his teammates and his university.

John Harris

Q: Would you take Ryan Perrilloux on your team?

A: If I'm as good of a coach as I think I am, I should believe that I can win without him. I don't need to sell my soul-I'm good enough and my team is as well.

If I'm not a good coach, then it won't matter anyway.

Matthew Zemek

Q: Would you take Ryan Perrilloux on your team?

: No, and all credit to Les Miles, being the standup individual he generally is, for not putting up with him any longer. Miles has had to endure many slings and arrows, so he deserves hearty applause for saying enough is enough.
We would do well to remember Lawrence Phillips at Nebraska. Yeah, it's easy to trot out the old "this man needs football in order to grow" defense, but when violent actions (as opposed to nonviolent ones) are involved, the playing of football should be seen as a young man's forfeited privilege, not as his desperately needed tonic.
Well done, Les Miles. Well done.