So this whole Demetrius Jones transferring to Northern Illinois thing has been well documented, as has his anger towards the way he was treated by Charlie Weis. Well now the manatee-like Irish coach may have gotten his revenge for the way Jones handled his transfer.
Notre Dame’s athletics director Kevin White announced that they will not release Jones from his scholarship. What does that mean? It means that since Jones is already enrolled at Northern Illinois, he will be forced to pay his way for this school year if he wants to be eligible next season. If Notre Dame released him, his education would be paid for by NIU as a scholarship athlete, now Jones will have to pay roughly (according to the school’s Web site) $14,530 for tuition and room and board. White gave the reason for this decision, “We don’t believe Demetrius’ departure was handled properly.” Well I’m sold, screw the kid. Weis misled him, then said Jones was never intended to be the starter anyway, basically alienating him, but yeah he totally should have felt comfortable going to Weis and telling him he was leaving. Yeah, screw him.
White claimed that it was an institutional decision that had nothing to do with Weis and the coaches. Right, I’m sure Charlie had nothing to do with it. And even if he didn’t wouldn’t it have been smarter to tell White to release Jones just so the Irish would be seen as taking the high road? But no, it would be far too classy a move to just let the kid go. Instead we’re going to ruin his life for a year to prove a point to everyone. This is obviously a combination of getting back at Jones for his statements about the current situation at Notre Dame and a way of sending a message to the current players that if they want to leave, they better be prepared to go through hell.
What happened to the days when Notre Dame seemed to be above all the petty politics that often surface in college football? In the face of all the recent criticism of how Weis is running his program wouldn’t it be a good idea to just let this one go and look like the good guys? If you truly think what Jones did was reprehensible, then why do something equally as classless back to him? Take the high road, say good riddance and move on. I respect the history at a place like Notre Dame, even if I don’t like the attitude of certain fans/players/coaches currently associated with the program. This kind of thing just cheapens that tradition for me. Act like the classy institution you claim to be and let the kid go.