MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Sports

August 3, 2008

COLUMN: Sooner lessons and other random thoughts...

When he signed his letter of intent in February, Muskogee’s Jameel Owens said he was promised No. 4, his number as a Rougher and also the number vacated by OU-ex Malcolm Kelly.

Alas, the team’s roster shows him sharing Kelly’s old number with redshirt freshman Corey Wilson (Carrollton, Texas). Stacy McGee’s number is 92. It was 50 when the other 2008 Rougher to ink with OU and Owens finished up at MHS.

We’re hoping to hear from these guys, along with Muskogee redshirt freshman Jontae Bumpus at OU’s Media Day on Wednesday. Sooners coach Bob Stoops normally has a policy against freshman talking to the media before they play in a game. We’ll see if an exception is made.

Meanwhile, here’s hoping these guys stay grounded in light of the events surrounding Josh Jarboe, dismissed by Stoops on Friday after the player appeared in a 74-second, profanity-laced video in which he rapped about guns and shooting people. The video is circulating on the Internet and appears to have been filmed in a university athletic dormitory, according to Associated Press reports.

The talk shows have been filled with debate about this dismissal. Does it step on Jarboe’s freedom of speech right, as one argument goes? In a way, yes.

But Jarboe put his right to utter video phrases like “I’ll shoot your a-- up like a damn pool table” right behind the 8-ball with his weapons charge earlier in the year, and Stoops decided there would be no re-rack.

“We outlined for Josh the expectations we had for him when he arrived and, unfortunately, those expectations have not been met. Josh needs to learn from this experience. We hope he can move forward in a positive manner,” Stoops said.

End of subject, and good for Stoops. Setting expectations are justified when you’re investing thousands for a kid’s athletic and academic future. Jarboe scratched on two experiences in a year’s time — not a good start for someone with so much promise.

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