"Hand", "Sticky Situation", "Gets Off Easy", and "Hookers". Make Your Own Headline
Those of you keeping score at home, that's one semester suspension from school and athletics for having a spliff in your car and 180 minutes of benchwarming for cruising for hookers. You figure that one out.
Anyway, I did my heavy-handed serious piece on the whole situation over at the Fanhouse, so you can go over the gory details and the potential fallout from this decision over there. Here at the HRB, it's all about fun and games and fart jokes, so I'll lay off anything too preachy at this venue. The bottom line, though, is that there are four possible explanations for what happened:
1.) The University magically decided to take a different approach to athlete suspensions and show more care and common sense than in the previous cases, which were brutal by even the strictest standards. They also decided to do this without telling anybody and the day before a football player got busted. Prognosis: Uh, not likely.
2.) Since soliciting a prostitute is not strictly addressed in the parameters of du Lac (the holy parchment for disciplinary action), whereas there is clear verbage on more commonplace malfeasances like smoking a doobie, Hand skated by on a technicality. Let's call it the Farmer Hoggett Exemption: if there's nothing in the holy parchment that specifically forbids it, then it's OK. Prognosis: Uh, also unlikely. I got busted for holding and booking bets on unsanctioned giraffe races on North Quad my sophomore year, and I'm pretty sure there's nothing in du Lac expressly prohibiting that.
3.) The old "selling your soul for football glory" thing...
4.) There's more to this case than we know about, and a thorough review of the case and its circumstances showed that Hand's specific situation was much different than what the headlines will tell you. There is enough exonerating evidence to show no criminal misconduct (i.e., Darrell just told the hooker a dirty knock-knock joke instead of requesting sex for money). Cooler heads prevail and a slap on the wrist is issued.
Please, little baby Jesus, let it be number four. I've always felt that this needed to be done anyway, especially since ResLife (as you students and alumni can undoubtedly confirm) has always had a "shoot first, ask questions later" policy in terms of doling out discipline. If it took the time to hear out the merits of the case and take it for its individual circumstances, well, that would just be a big leap forward for the way student affairs are handled at the dome and a very good sign. At this point, we'll just have to wait and see what more information is released. If we don't hear anything by the time Hand is running around decleating offensive linemen, then popular opinion (and mine as well) will start swaying toward any combination of the other three alternatives.
Ugh. Enough of that. Time for fun and games. My ultra-scientific blogpoll ballot will be released later tonight. In the meantime, be a good Christian and put down the hashpipe and get yourself a streetwalker.