The Rifle Colorado high school football program has been suspended for one year for cheating. Congratulations to those involved for setting a sterling example for the developing youth of the town. Those involved should have been more careful, after all it’s only cheating when you get caught. Yes, winning is everything, no wait, it’s the only thing. Nice guys finish last, and stuff like that. Although the whole thing has the stench of a month old roadkill on the Rio Blanco hill in August, the coaching staff and those involved managed to come out smelling like old roses with only the one year suspension and the onus of collusion to linger. Most of what was done appears to have been taken from the playbook of such football greats as Bill Belichick, whose winning record, (they did outplay the Seahawks), some would say is due largely to intrigue, spying and skirting the letter of the law. Videographers were involved in the escapades and winning records were the result.
Perhaps we should spell a few things out for our impressionable youth, particularly those in Rifle who may have been led astray by their mentors. In sports, as in life, no one can see what goes on at the bottom of the pile, thumb breaking, ear twisting and eye gouging can all be accidental in the proper context. Lying is an acceptable tactic if it gets you where you want to go, like politics or upper management. A shortcut is still a shortcut if you have to break the speed limit to make it one. No doesn’t always mean no, sometimes it even means yes. Nothing really belongs to anyone. Whoever has the better lawyer is in the right. It’s not what you know, it’s who. Better to grease the wheels than listen to the squeak. No one remembers second place. If you are honest, study hard and listen to what your father says you may be able to get a job in the mine.