College. When you hear that word, what do you think? Are any of your thoughts about partying, being young and living it up? Some of those thoughts should be. College isn’t a time where you go from being a high school student to a completely matured adult.
Every college student makes mistakes. We all make mistakes. Not all of us are star college athletes though. Why should these student-athletes be held to a higher standard? In the end, they are college students with more fame than they know what to do with. These kids came to play sports at a higher level, not be role models across the country. It’s saddening that they get ripped apart for common things that us normal people get caught doing too.
Take Jameis Winston for example. Winston has been under constant surveillance since his freshman year at Florida State University. The star of a team that went on to win the National Championship, Winston himself won the Heisman. Winston obviously has the talent to be a top-five pick whenever he declares for the NFL draft. However, he has found himself in hot water often. After an off-season that included a shady rape allegation (with no proof I may add), shoplifting and scrutiny for his post-game grammar, Winston’s draft stock has been in a free-fall. Now with his recent suspension for “vulgar language,” some critics are deeming him “undraftable.”
Remind you of another college QB who won the Heisman as a freshman? One who was always in the news for his off-field antics? The one and only, Johnny Manziel. Also viewed “undraftable” by some teams, Manziel fell all the way to the 22nd pick. Now while some of his slide down the draft board was due to size and durability concerns, some teams did pass up on him because of his partying habits.
It’s time to change our look on college kids. They’re still young and maturing. We can’t expect them all to be complete goody-two-shoes. Let these college students have their fun off the field. The only place we should judge them is on the field.