Toting A Gun On School Property Is Grounds For Losing A Scholarship

By Gregory Moore
Updated: May 27, 2006

SAN ANTONIO — Derek Williams was a standout football player. Derek Williams was set to walk across the stage. Derek Williams had accepted a football scholarship at Midwestern State University. Derek Williams could be facing a third degree felony charge for being dumb enough to bring a firearm onto school property. Derek Williams should lose his scholarship for endangering innocent lives.

It may sound really harsh from an outsider on this subject but young Mr. Williams isn�t a child; he�s an 18-year-old adult. Coddling him because he made a foolhardy mistake isn�t going to correct the problem because there was intent to do somebody bodily harm. What has to happen is that the San Antonio community not be so quick to say, �Oh he�s a young man who made a mistake. He deserves a second chance�. That may be all well and good if he accidentally lost or misplaced a library or school boo but what he did was a third degree felony. As a matter of fact, the San Antonio Express-News said in a news story that Williams had a 9mm handgun in a trunk that he opened. That�s not a misplaced library book. That�s a weapon of destruction.

Undoubtedly many will rally around him and say that this young man is being prosecuted unfairly. Yet let me show you what Judson�s student handbook says about certain actions such as this. In the handbook it states that the district has the right to discipline a student when certain offenses against another student regardless of where the offense occurs and when the student commits a felony, as provided by the Texas Education Code, Chapter 37 (which can be found at http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/ed.toc.htm).

The seriousness of the crime that Mr. Williams committed is also part of a moral turpitude issue. What reason did he have being at Roosevelt High School that day? Why did he have a gun in his possession? What reasoning can he explain to his loved ones why he would do something that could jeopardize his future? These are a part of the character issues that are now very much a part of Williams� problems. These are the very issues that should be having his potential college football coach, Bill Maskill, wondering what kind of individual he is getting.

What society is so hell bent on doing is rewarding individuals for their misconduct by allowing them to have the privilege of receiving a college athletic scholarship or other award that is probably better for someone who is truly worthy of it. Before this tragic day, Derek Williams was a young man with a future. Derek Williams was a standout football player. Derek Williams was set to walk across the stage. Derek Williams had accepted a football scholarship at Midwestern State University. Derek Williams could be facing a third degree felony charge for being dumb enough to bring a firearm onto school property. Derek Williams should lose his scholarship for endangering innocent lives.

Derek Williams needs to face the situation at hand and own up to what he did. A scholarship is the least of his problems.

MERCY RULE DOESN�T NEED TO APPLY TO FOOTBALL Okay I�m all down for good sportsmanship but with the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference thinks that a mercy rule in football will actually curtail lopsided blowouts by some of its football teams. Now maybe this rule works when you are dealing with Pop Warner football or when you are dealing with instructional leagues but this is varsity football and that�s totally different. But to put in a rule that is supposed to halt a massacre at the varsity level will not do anything but further hurt the psyche of the players who are on the losing end of the score.

As easy as this may sound for CIAC to implement, the problem will still be present. What problem is that? That certain varsity high school teams in that state are not up to the same caliber of play as a team like New Haven or whatever other teams are powerhouses. Is it these schools faults that they have developed a winning formula for success in high school football? No and it shouldn�t be. That�s like basically telling USC that they need to play down to the level of a McNeese State when they play or that when Duke University plays a Florida Atlantic team, they need to spot them by twenty to give them a fair chance. It�s ludicrous to think that it would happen even up under a hypothetical situation.

Maybe what the CIAC needs to do is to talk to their coaches and implore them to �have mercy� on their opponents when there is such a big margin. Maybe the CIAC should also talk to these schools who are always on the back end of such blow outs and ask them if they want to be put in a different division. Evidently the biggest reason why such blowouts happen is because the school on the losing end doesn�t have the talent to �hang� with the winning squad. But that�s varsity sports and that�s life. Sometimes life isn�t fair and sometimes a bail out doesn�t help you but makes you weaker than what you already are.