Roy Exum: Can The Truth Be Biased?

Monday, October 7, 2013 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

When college football goes to a much-needed playoff system next year, we are told that a select committee of 12 to 18 experts will choose the four teams that will be invited to the college version of the Super Bowl. But who on earth is choosing the experts? This weekend it was leaked that former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will be asked to serve on the august group and ESPN sports commentator David Pollack immediately found himself in hot water after questioning her selection on the air.

“Now I’m going to stick my foot in my mouth, probably,” Pollack said on Saturday’s College GameDay program. “(but) I want people on this committee, guys, that can watch tape ... Yes, that have played football, that are around football, that can tell you different teams, on tape, not on paper...”

Pollack, who starred at Georgia as a player, immediately had some on the show, and who were watching, call him out. “So no woman belongs on the committee, then?” interjected host Chris Fowler and Pollack didn’t back down. “You said that … I’ll say it, yeah. Yeah.”

Miss Rice, undeniably a great American icon and a wonderful statesman, is just perfect in her present role as a political science professor at Stanford but Pollack, who is equally adept on ESPN, obviously prefers the truth over political correctness. Later in the day he tweeted, “I want people on the committee that eat, sleep & breathe college football during the season. It has nothing to do with male or female.”

ESPN reported yesterday that Ms. Rice is indeed one of those who have been selected. The others include former Ole Miss and New Orleans Saints quarterback Archie Manning, former Big East Commissioner Mike Tranghese, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Gould (the former Air Force Academy superintendent), and former NCAA executive Tom Jernstedt, who worked with the basketball tournament selection committee.

Also chosen, according to ESPN sources, are former Nebraska athletic director and coach Tom Osborne, Tyrone Willingham, the former football coach at Stanford, Notre Dame and Washington, former Big East commissioner Mike Tranghese, athletic directors Barry Alvarez of Wisconsin, Jeff Long of Arkansas, Oliver Luck of West Virginia, and Dan Radakovich of Clemson. Steve Wieberg, a longtime former sportswriter at USA Today, will be a media representative.

Go back and study those names. There is an old saying that if you can’t spot the sucker at a poker table, then it is probably you. So while it has nothing to do with sex or race, any of us can identify the one person who has no business being included on such a committee. That isn’t mean-spirited or biased; it is the simple truth.

Last year Ms. Rice and businesswoman Darla Moore became the first two female members of Augusta National Golf Club. They both wore their green jackets, are active golfers, and greatly enjoy being included. But let’s recognize the Masters deal for what it is – big cats who like flaunting themselves in public and doing little else than rubbing elbows one weekend a year.

In my way of thinking, there is nothing wrong with having a female or even more women on the committee if they are qualified. Perhaps the most respected is Sally Jenkins, the longtime sports columnist for the Washington Post who just helped Pat Summitt write her best-seller, “Sum It Up.” Christine Brennan is an award-winning USA Today sports columnist and Bonnie Bernstein of “Campus Insiders” is good. So is Jackie MacMullan when she appears on “Around the Horn.” There are some other women who could add to the committee, too, but spare us the sideline cupcakes. Mercy.

The truth is that Condi Rice – no matter how much we admire her – has little to warrant being on a college football committee, other than she was born in Birmingham where the game is popular and defied great odds, as many of today’s college players have done, to get where she is today.

Selecting four teams for the 2014 playoffs is going to be a lot harder than we may imagine. Look at the Top 10 teams in America and seven are unbeaten. The other three – Georgia, Texas A&M and LSU – each have one loss because another Top 10 SEC team flexed its muscle. Could Georgia beat Florida State or can Alabama stop Oregon? Those questions have tough answers and college football deserves the best experts to decide.

In my way of thinking, all political correctness does is muddle the situation, just like it does in everything else that is true and good and pure.

royexum@aol.com


Roy Exum: Our Insult To Israel

I am deeply saddened that over two dozen members of Congress – all Democrats – will be boycotting a speech by Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, when he speaks in Washington tonight. I am also offended that the President of the United States will not receive Netanyahu prior to the speech – a customary gesture on such occasions – because he claims it is too close to ... (click for more)

Remembering Dr. Jack Willke - And Response

When I first became active as a Right-to-Life leader in 1975, Dr. Jack Willke (and his wife, Barbara) were the preeminent leaders at the National level.  Rarely did you see one without the other. They literally wrote the book used by Pro-Life activists everywhere, The Handbook on Abortion . I carried it everywhere and studied it over and over. Their books sold ... (click for more)

2 Hit While Walking On Birmingham Highway; 1 Dies At The Hospital

Two pedestrians were struck by a single vehicle on Highway 11 (Birmingham Highway) in Lookout Valley on Tuesday night. One of those who was struck died after being taken to a local hospital. Police said the other person who was hit was responsive. The incident happened shortly after 7 p.m. at 261 Birmingham Hwy. which is in the area of the Lookout Valley Cracker ... (click for more)

Henry Hopes To Bring E-Filing To Clerk's Office This Year; Saving Almost $222,000 On Personnel

Circuit Court Clerk Larry Henry said he hopes to bring E-Filing of documents and other court papers to the clerk’s office this year.   He said at first it appeared it might take much longer, but that progress is being made to the online program. Mr. Henry told members of the Pachyderm Club that attorneys, litigants and members of the public would be able to go online to ... (click for more)

Double Overtime Thriller: Central Boys Going To State

For all the folks who came to Chattanooga State Tuesday night for the Class AA sectional battle between Livingston Academy and Region 3-AA champ Central, they got their money's worth and more. And they even got some free basketball to boot. Needing a couple of overtimes, the Purple Pounders will be heading to Murfreesboro and MTSU's Murphy Center next week for the TSSAA State ... (click for more)

Blackman Blazes A Trail To State By Bashing Bradley, 55-35

(Story will be updated) MUFREESBORO, Tenn. – The Class AAA state champions are still alive and well. Blackman raced past outmanned Bradley Central, 55-35, Tuesday night in a Class AAA sectional victory that blazed a path right to the boys state tournament at nearby Middle Tennessee State University starting on March 11. The Blaze (24-5) will be making their fourth ... (click for more)