Proceed With Caution!!!!

By Tony Price, BASN Staff Reporter
Updated: August 17, 2009

Matthew 7:1 “Judge not, that you may not be judged”

BOSTON (BASN) — Well it seems that the Rick Pitino saga has taken some interesting twists, as we now know of a self confessed sexual tryst six years ago between he and Mrs. Karen Sypher at a restaurant on a table no less. Slick Rick has even admitted to paying $3,000 in hush money for an alleged abortion or insurance. Mrs. Sypher also accuses Pitino of orchestrating her marriage to Tim Sypher the equipment manager as part of his plan to keep her silenced, disturbing to say the least. As this case continues to play out I couldn’t help but draw a comparison with the Steve McNair case and the similarities of both. I also find the media’s reporting of both cases a stark contrast. In McNair’s case he comes off as a good guy, but a person with a dark side a miscreant. He is portrayed as someone just short of a pervert for gallivanting around with some young thing he met at Dave & Buster’s and it cost him his life, while there is a sort of romance mystery novel destined for the Life time network being played out in the Pitino case. I’m sure I was not the only person duped into initially thinking that Mrs. Sypher was some kind of deranged lunatic who singled out Pitino because of his fame and wealth, but as more of the facts are presented, you get a different perspective of Slick Rick’s role in the matter. University President James Ramsey has already made a statement on where the college stands “Its time to move on, Coach is our guy” colleges and universities are quick to react with stiff penalties when an athlete gets in trouble.Funny how the roles change when their “Golden Boy” the person who helps generate millions of dollars for the institution is in trouble.

Here are a few additional comparisons for you to consider:

1. Both had extramarital affairs that played out in the court of public opinion

2. Both garnered fame and fortune through sports

3. All families involved have been damaged and left to pick up the pieces

4. Lives have been lost or in Pitino’s case allegedly lost (abortion)

5. Both were revered as leaders in their respective fields/positions and had thousands of people who looked up to them.

6. Both gave back to the community and were active in charitable causes.

Both McNair and Pitino lived in a world that 95% of men admire or envy, they made millions for their proficiency in athletics, one as a gifted athlete, while the other for his brilliance as a motivator.

They also lived in a world that is far from the norm for the lay person, especially when it came to female adulation. For the average guy, we have to work hard to impress the ladies and have them notice us and the success rate is in the range of 10-30%, while men of fame, power, wealth and prestige, often have their pick from a bevy of available beauties.

In their world the success rate even if for one night is higher. I’m not justifying the decision these men made, but I do thinks it’s important to consider the varied angles. As a country we are no longer shocked when we learn of affairs of some of the most powerful men in the country.

In fact it occurs with such common occurrence the public expects it to some degree and many men often fantasize about what it would be like to have the tables turned on women and be on the receiving end of their attention or affection and being in the position to say yea or nea as that delicate flower approaches you for a telephone number and date.

The questions still remains with all of the cases that are being played out before the public why do men continue to have these affairs, hoping that no one will ever find out? Is it a moral or character issue? Do they think they are untouchable? Is the temptation greater than mans will power that they are willing to risk everything?

And what about the woman’s role in the matter, often times we like to think of her as some lowly, desperate tramp a home wrecker, however in many cases she is quite the opposite, she is bright, articulate, educated and very calculating.

Why aren’t they held accountable?

They are aware that most of these men are married, do we justify their actions or their temporary lapse in judgment based on the intoxicating aroma of prestige and wealth of the men they are involved with.

The answers may not be as easy as you think or better yet, maybe we just have to view each case separately, as no one can say with 100% certainty why these types of scenarios continue to happen.

I have never walked in the shoes of these powerful and rich men hence I can’t imagine the pressure they face or the discipline they have to exercise on a daily basis to avoid the snares that are set before their feet.

Nor will I judge them for their indiscretions, which amongst us has that right; each of us has a vice or kryptonite we hope no one will ever discover from addiction to low self esteem.

However I do know the importance of understanding that every action has a consequence good or bad and you have to live with that.

I discuss this in depth in chapter nine of the book “An Unsung Coach” Change the game, don’t let it change you. It’s important for any of us to remember why we got involved in the professions of our choice, generally it was to make a difference while at the same time earn money to support our family.

It is important for you to remember the core values of who you are and do your best to see through the illusions of the trappings of success, no one is perfect, but continue to hold yourself accountable or find someone you trust to hold you accountable this may lessen the risk of questionable behavior.