The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus


Just let this hawk squawk

I can admit when I was wrong. And after Sunday’s NFC championship game I incorrectly and unfairly passed judgment on Seattle defensive back Richard Sherman.

Sherman made the game-deciding play, tipping a would-be game-winning touchdown away from 49ers wide receiver Michael Crabtree and into his teammate’s hands for a game-ending interception.

Sherman is one of the most electrifying defensive players in the game and led the NFL in interceptions this season with eight. After being involved in the biggest play of the day, of course Fox wanted him in front of a camera.

What happened next has become a lightning rod for discussion over the past couple of days. Sherman has been called a thug, as well as some more obscene titles.

After his cathartic interview with side line reporter Erin Andrews, my impression of Sherman was that he was a moron, not a thug. I thought he was furthering the stereotype of football players being brutes or more savage individuals.

The interview resembled a professional wrestling promo that one would see on WWE or WCW. I also saw a similarity in the tone he spoke with to that of a recent Dennis Rodman press conference from North Korea. In that press conference, Rodman was very animated, yelling and waving a fat cigar around. Rodman’s speech turned into a wrestling promo when he yelled, “but guess what though?!” Sherman’s interview began to resemble a promo when he said, “Don’t you ever talk about me!”

Andrews then asked Sherman, “Who was talking about you?” We then found out that the Seattle corner had exchanged words with Crabtree.

Prior to the interview and at the end of the game, Sherman walked over to Crabtree and offered his hand in a sign of alleged sportsmanship, and Crabtree put his hand in Sherman’s face.

The colorful interview with Sherman is a prime example why in most cases, there is a 15 minute “cool off” period before interviews with players take place. Especially in this big of a game that came right down to the end, emotions will be high.

Immediately after the interview I already had passed judgment on Sherman, without really knowing who he was. Then he shocked me with a piece he wrote in Sport’s Illustrated’s Monday Morning Quarterback with Peter King. In the article, Sherman explains the exchange with Crabtree and explains his actions on camera. It didn’t seem like he was defending his actions more so as he was helping us understand.

What I didn’t know Sunday night, was that Sherman graduated high school with a 4.1 GPA. He then went to Stanford University where he continued to be a stud on the field and in the classroom and graduated with a degree in communications. It is apparent in reading his post that he is very educated and not the brutish “thug” social media made him out to be.

In his outpouring of emotions, Sherman never looked away from the camera and he never uttered a single obscenity. He may have looked like a crazy idiot, but chances are he is smarter than most of the people calling him names.

As if he needed to do more to convince me, he then appeared on ESPN First Take and did battle with Stephen A. Smith and Skip Bayless. During this interview Sherman told Bayless, “In my 24 years of life, I’m better at life than you.” How did Bayless respond? He said, “OK, that’s fair.”

Sherman may be cocky, but his accomplishments permit him to believe he is the best; he talks the talk, but he also walks the walk. You can love him or hate him because of his personality, but you cannot deny that he is one of the premier defensive players in the NFL.

Sherman isn’t a moron. He isn’t a thug. He isn’t a jerk, either. He is a passionate, talented and educated football player and most of us owe him an apology.

Teniente is a junior majoring in journalism and English.

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