December 23, 2012; Tampa, FL, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes head football coach Urban Meyer watches the game between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and St. Louis Rams during the second quarter at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Football Roundtable: Is Urban Meyer to blame for Aaron Hernandez?


The staff of Writing Illini takes a more conference outlook as they examine the Aaron Hernandez case. Some have suggested that Urban Meyer might be to blame for what Hernandez has become. The guys look at this and say if Meyer is to blame at all.

Oct 27, 2012; University Park, PA, USA; Ohio State Buckeyes head coach Urban Meyer jogs off the field prior to the game against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Beaver Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Austin: Let’s be honest, I’m not a big fan of Urban Meyer. He is a snake of a coach, and the way he recruits and has press conferences makes me sick. That said, blaming him for Aaron Hernandez is along the same lines as blaming “Blue Cotton Candy Bubblicious” (the gum he was allegedly chewing that night) for what may or may not have happened. Why is it that as a society we are so quick to try to find someone to blame in the wake of a tragedy, that we forget to blame the person in question, the one who may have actually committed the crime? We look at video games, movies, television, and music as scapegoats in a tragedy instead of saying “Hey, that person did something that was stupid, wrong, and evil”. Sometimes, we need to realize that some people may just be bad people who make bad choices. Blaming a guy who coached him in college is so asinine that it does not make sense.

Ryan: Why stop with Urban Meyer? Why not ask if Bill Belichick is to blame for Aaron Hernandez? Surely, the vetting process is much more diligent for the NFL than it is for NCAA Football. One would be led to believe that the Patriots would have discovered much of this behavior before they ever drafted, and then subsequently offered Hernandez a lucrative contract.

I can say with 100% certainty that overlooking severe character flaws because an individual has exceptional talent on the football field isn’t morally right. However, coaches aren’t social workers, law enforcement officials, or priests. They are paid to win football games. Carrying Aaron Hernandez as a member of their respective rosters is how both Meyer and Belichick determined they could each win more games, and neither of them deserves the blame for Hernandez’s ultra-poor decision making abilities as a human being.

The point in all of this is that the only person to blame in this situation is Hernandez himself. He chose to live his life in this manner, and will ultimately deserve the punishment he receives if he is indeed proven guilty.

Ricky: When it comes to the Aaron Hernandez’s trail/murder, I cannot agree more with ESPN’s Colin Cowherd. In a tweet last weekend, Cowherd said, “If my son ever plays college sports & gets in trouble w law–I have failed. My son will have failed. Here’s who I won’t blame–the coach.”

We look at college coaches to be the ones to make sure players make the right choices in life, but that is not what they are paid for. Coaches are not paid to place morals and values into players, that’s what parents are for. Yes, I know Aaron’s father died when he was 16 years old and that could be a reason why Hernandez is the guy that he is today. However, in the end, Urban Meyer’s job at Florida was to win games. Not to teach Aaron Hernandez how to make the right choices in life.

What do you think, Illini Nation? Should Urban Meyer hold some blame when it comes to Aaron Hernandez?

The Writing Illini staff includes lead editor Ricky Widmer along with staff writers, Austin Jabs and Ryan Kraemer.

Follow Ricky on Twitter @RickyWidmer.

Follow Austin on Twitter @AustinJabs85.

Follow Ryan on Twitter @RPKraemer.

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Tags: Aaron Hernandez Football Illinois Fighting Illini Ohio State Buckeyes Urban Meyer