By: Maria Perez
Division I college sports are more than just an extra curricular activity, they’re more like a way of life. The pressure to win The Heisman Trophy, the NCAA Title or winning the Rose Bowl, WHILE getting a higher education, is not an easy task for student athletes, or even the coaches, to manage. There have been times students, coaches or even the whole program have covered up issues with lies to maintain their reputation. Is pressure an excuse to lie? Of course not, but the competitive nature has brought out the worst in many.
Here are five of the most outrageous lies in college sports:
5. Josh Shaw, University of Southern California
The fifth year Senior and Captain of USC went from hero to zero this week after revealing he had lied about how he hurt both of his ankles. His original story involved him jumping off a balcony to save his nephew from drowning in the pool like he was Spiderman or something. The real story? He fell off a balcony … doing who knows what… probably college things.
4. Ivan Renko, Indiana University
Do you remember the 6’8” 230 pound Yugoslav who played basketball for the Hoosiers? You don’t? Oh that’s right, because he never existed… The ever classic Bob Knight pulled one over on everyone in 1993 by announcing on his television show that he had recruited a player from Yugoslavia. His purpose was to show the world how ridiculous recruiting experts are, which worked. Some “experts” were analyzing Renko’s skills and saying they had even seen him play. +1 for Bobby.
3. Kevin Hart, University of California?
Being a Division I athlete speaks for itself when it comes to image and this High School senior wanted nothing more. His obsession with being a recruited football player got to the point that he fabricated an entire story that five different schools were interested in offering him a scholarship. For the cherry on top, Hart held an assembly event with local Television stations and his school’s student body to watch him pick between the Cal Bears and Oregon Ducks cap. Neither school was actually interested in him and was forced to come clean. You can’t help but feel for the guy but he probably should have focused that passion towards an acting career instead.
2. Rashad McCants, University of North Carolina
Being a student athlete means you’re a student first and an athlete second but sometimes that isn’t the case. Many athletes struggle to keep the grade point average required to be eligible to play and Rashad McCants fell into that statistic. In this case, the school did’t just help him by providing tutors but rather the tutors did his work. You may have thought he was just really interested in African American studies with the 18 classes he took, but in reality they were just fake classes to put on paper. Schools have been known to do just about anything to keep their best players on their roster even if means taking the word student out of student athlete.
1. Manti Te’o, University of Notre Dame
One of the biggest fabricated stories in college sports is Manti Te’o’s deceased girlfriend. While at Notre Dame, Manti had met his girlfriend online, who later died of Leukemia. Everyone felt sorry for his loss until it was revealed that she never existed. Manti, a Heisman Trophy candidate, apparently found out about the hoax days prior to the decision of the winner. Unfortunately for him, he was runner up for the award losing to Johnny Manziel, needless to say it wasn’t a good week for his dignity.