Stay Classy, Oregon

Nobody is confirming or denying it at this point, but doesn’t the silence surrounding Jeremiah Masoli and accusations of theft sound damning?

Masoli’s name has been connected with a theft on the University of Oregon campus. It’s been on TV and some newspapers, although The Associated Press hasn’t picked up the story. That’s because Eugene police and university officials haven’t confirmed the names of the suspects.

But with Masoli’s name out there, don’t you think Masoli and/or his coaches would have denied it by now? Which reminds me of this story that ran in the Register-Guard late in the season.

Masoli had been in trouble in high school. He entered a guilty plea for a series of robberies, was expelled from school, and spent time in a juvenile detention center.

I’m all for second chances, but the story included a disturbing quote from Mike Bellotti: “We have a lot of kids (with a similar history), based on who they hung out with in high school, the kind of crowd they ran with or the environment they were in. And luckily for him in some regards, he removed himself — or his family removed him — from that environment, and it paid dividends.”

I don’t know whether Bellotti meant it this way, but it seems rather flippant to shrug it off as, “We have a lot of kids (with a similar history) . . .” Stay classy, Oregon.

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