Always thought April Fools’ Day was supposed to last just 24 hours.
It is somehow becoming a month-long event in 2012.
The sporting world is always a ripe place to find fools and I’m not even including the everyday lineup of the San Diego Padres on my list – or the franchise’s embarrassing ownership situation.
Three fools stand out thus far but I must issue this warning: The month is barely one-third over, which leaves plenty of time for Stan Van Gundy to further expose Dwight Howard as a fraud, or for Ryan Braun to again test positive for performance-enhancing drugs, or for an NFL draft hopeful to commit a crime on the eve of the festivities.
The leaders in the Clubhouse of Fools are a fired college football coach, an idiot who doubles as a baseball manager and a lifetime loser who I have always expected to land in jail someday.
Bobby Petrino crashed his motorcycle on April 1 and would have been better served to try the “April Fools” excuse than leaving out key details while lying to his boss. He was fired as Arkansas coach on April 10.
Ozzie Guillen would have been better off if he had tried to kidnap Starlin Castro from the Chicago Cubs than expressing his adoration of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. The manager of the Miami Marlins drew a five-game suspension and later made a feeble attempt at apologizing.
Long-disgraced quarterbrat Ryan Leaf got arrested on April 2 for the second time just days after getting out of jail on similar burglary and stolen prescription drug charges. He’s back to being the “Lonesome Loser” in a Montana jail.
Let’s start with Petrino, who went from being the most revered person in his state to biggest moron in the country in record time.
Petrino broke ribs and injured his neck in the motorcycle crash and that was the least painful part of the ordeal. The married father of four told athletic director Jeff Long – and the media and public – that he was the only person aboard the motorcycle.
Pretty stupid to lie to your boss but Petrino had a lot to hide. He had a 25-year-old blonde named Jessica Dorrell on the back of the cycle – the same woman he had just made sure landed a job in the football program out of 159 applicants and the same person he admitted to having an “inappropriate relationship” with a few days after the accident when her name was listed on the police report.
Long disclosed in the firing announcement press conference that Petrino had paid Dorrell $20,000. Wow. A 51-year-old married man doesn’t give a nonrelative half his age that kind of dough and uses his influence to line her up with a job just to be nice.
Dorrell will long be known as the Arkansas version of a call girl at that price. I’m sure the IRS will be swinging by to make sure the “income” was reported too.
By the way, Dorrell was engaged to a member of the Arkansas swimming program. Nice morals. So yes, she’s just as slimy and unfaithful as Petrino.
Oh yeah, nothing like birds of a feather flocking together – change flocking to a different term if you wish – on a motorcycle in Arkansas.
Guillen has long been a blowhard prone to saying stupid things but he stooped to new levels with his glowing praise of Castro, the brutal dictator who has wrecked the lives of millions of Cubans during his reign of power.
He was in his first week of managing the Marlins when he made his silly comments. Miami is loaded with citizens who had to flee Cuba on boats or rafts to avoid the possibility of seeing their own lives eliminated by the Castro regime.
Pretty much puts an end to the welcome to town grace period a manager typically enjoys when he blurts out “I love Fidel Castro.”
I see Charles Manson is up for parole. Is Guillen’s next refrain going to be “I love Charles Manson?”
The Marlins did make one mistake in their discipline of Guillen. They should have shipped him to Cuba first and told him he’d have to find his way back to Miami on a lifeboat to retain his job. And let him know to watch for sharks in the ocean.
Leaf long ago cemented his place as the biggest bust in NFL history and apparently is trying to top his previous established level of stupidity in his personal life.
I covered the San Diego Chargers when they drafted Leaf second overall in the 1998 NFL draft and he remains the biggest jerk I’ve ever had to deal with. Leaf was an habitual liar who was always looking to place the blame elsewhere. He wasn’t respected by his teammates and once drew a four-game suspension for cussing out general manager Bobby Beathard.
Leaf was selected immediately after Peyton Manning, which only added to his reputation as a bust when he threw a total of 13 touchdown passes in three seasons with the Chargers before they booted him out of town.
One of the more surreal moments of Leaf’s stay with the Chargers came during training camp at UC San Diego when a heckler loudly questioned Leaf’s commitment and serenaded him with verses of the song “Lonesome Loser” by the Little River Band.
The fan called Leaf “the worst draft choice in NFL history,” and Leaf headed toward the grandstand to confront him. The two were within just a few feet of one another when security guards and an assistant coach held Leaf back before the altercation could turn physical.
Lonesome Loser fit just fine back then and qualifies again now with Leaf in a jail cell. He obviously has addiction issues with the fact that he would allegedly break into a house and steal more prescription medicine just 48 hours after getting out of jail on similar charges.
But the bigger issue with Leaf is that he has always had major character issues. Occasionally, someone would mention that Leaf had time to mature back in the late 1990s and I would always laugh.
People with immaturity issues do change and grow up – people with character flaws don’t and continue to avoid responsibility for their actions.
Hey, Leaf sounds a bit like Petrino – both have proven to be habitual liars – and he used to say stupid things like Guillen, though “I can buy your dad” during a drunken rage in Pullman, Wash., isn’t on the same level of praising a brutal dictator.
Quite a trio of April Fools for sure. Makes me worry about what’s in store for the remaining 19 days of the month.