Jadeveon Clowney, arguably the best player in college football, chose to back out of Saturday’s game against Kentucky, claiming that he had a rib injury. In the wake of that decision many outsiders have questioned the legitimacy of the injury. Barring a catastrophic injury, Clowney is expected to be the first pick in next year’s NFL draft. Simply put, Jadeveon Clowney has millions of reasons for remaining healthy. The young man stands to make a lot of money if he is picked number one in the Spring.
Only Jadeveo Clowney knows if he is truly hurt or not. Many have found it suspicious that Clowney himself and not a trainer or doctor informed Coach Spurrier that he could not play. Not to mention that the disclosure came so close to kick-off.
In a post game interview Coach Spurrier gave the impression that he was not in support of Clowney’s decision, but he has since changed his tune. In fact, earlier today he praised Clowney to the point of crediting him with the invention of sliced bread. It sounded like the typical waffling that comes after controversial remarks are made.
I don’t know if he is hurt or not, but as a fan of his ferocious defense play I now have some concerns. If he is concerned that an injury will hurt his draft stock then simply say so and leave the team. I get that and who wouldn’t be concerned? Millions of dollars are on the line and I can respect such a concern. But have the wherewithal to say so if that is what you are worried about. What happens when an undesirable NFL team selects him in the draft? Will the mysterious injury reappear preventing him from suiting up for the Jags? Any time a football player uses the leverage of taking himself out of the game I become suspicious.
Jadeveon Clowney will long be remembered for one of the greatest, if not the greatest play, in college football history. But now I’m afraid he may also be remembered as the player who quit on his current team for a bigger payday in the future. He is a tremendous player and I hope to see him in opposing backfields next Saturday.