By Ashley Dunkak
The saga of former Detroit Lions wide receiver Titus Young came back into the national spotlight Tuesday when Robert Klemko of Sports Illustrated’s online venture MMQB published a lengthy piece detailing Young’s decline.
Young, whom the Lions cut in February, was arrested three times in the span of a week in May – first for a DUI, second for trying to steal his car that was impounded after the arrest and third for breaking into a home in San Clemente, Calif.
One of the more interesting voices in the article was that of Young’s high school coaches, E.C. Robinson and Lee Lowe.
Both talked about what a physical player Young was in high school, playing wide receiver but also safety, always looking to take the kind of shots that used to comprise ESPN’s big-hit segment entitled “Jacked Up” on Monday Night Football.
Robinson’s teams hit hard, sometimes with their heads. After a summer of sneaking into football camps with coach Lowe, Young wanted to make a statement in 2006, his senior year. He’d built buzz among recruiters as a fearless safety and a speed receiver. Young was particularly amped for the season opener against rival San Pedro. “I remember the game like it was yesterday,” Lowe says. “[Titus] said, I don’t need no picks, I got to let ’em know. He was sitting them on their ass, but it was all helmet to helmet. He was hitting guys so hard, like a scholarship was on the line. He was like a torpedo. Knockout shots.”
Says Robinson: “Titus loved to hit with his head.”
The article mentioned Young’s complaints that he should be the No. 1 receiver instead of superstar Calvin Johnson, his fight with safety Louis Delmas in practice and his general discontent and problems with the Lions.
At one point, Robinson called Young’s player agent, Kevin Poston, who said he had tried to get Young psychiatric help in Detroit but that Young had simply left the facility.
Boise State, where Young played his college ball, does not release injury information, but Young’s high school coaches recall the receiver admitted to dizziness on multiple occasions there, and they suspect those could be a factor in Young’s actions.
Young is supposed to report to the Newport Beach courthouse Aug. 27. He did not report Aug. 6 because he was undergoing treatment, his attorney told MMQB. If he does not show up Aug. 27, he will be subject to arrest.