Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Feeling Bluer

So now it's official, Vander Blue has decommitted. He feels like he made his decision too early, and wants to take a step back and reevaluate things. Fair enough, even if it stings us right now. As I said last week, he's a teenager making a big decision, he should take his time and get it right.

The two things that came out of the last day or so that bug me:

-Rob Schultz's story really seems to have stung Vander and his family. Schultz was doing his job, but when your primary source is anonymous, you leave yourself open for criticism.

-More than Schultz's story, certain Internet comments have really bothered Blue. This is the first time I've read about Internet commentary influencing a high school recruit UW has been in contention for -- correct me if I'm wrong. Which is surprising, given the volume of recruiting-related Internet chatter nowadays.

What bothers me are a. The fact that true Badger fans would make the types of comments about a recruit, especially focused on academics and work ethic, that were made on the Journal Sentinel's blog and following the Cap Times' stories, and b. The likelihood that at least some of the "Badger fans" making these derogatory comments were actually not Badger fans at all but in fact fans of rival schools who stand to gain from Vander reopening his recruitment. Anonymity is a bitch.

We're not out of the running yet, and the optimist in me holds out legitimate hope that Vander chooses to stay home to play college ball. The realist in me thinks that Bo and his staff will move on and grab someone for that scholarship as soon as possible. Still, a comment Vander made in Mark Miller's story about Devin playing up-tempo is encouraging.

Here's one other thing, especially given Vander's astute comment in Miller's story: Wes Matthews should shut his freaking mouth.


Edward said...

Three things: First, frankly, the talk about him being stung and offended sounds like an excuse. He just wanted to decommit, but sought out an excuse to do so. Just decommit, it is totally your right. Feekl free to check out other schools. Blaming writers and internet commentators is just a way of deflecting away from the fact that he changed his mind. Second, I know he is only 16 and I haven't said anything begative about him or cared, but the whole story makes him sound like a loser. If he is that sensitibve now, how will he feel when he has tyo ride the bench for a year or two. Let him go to Marquette.
Third, wow I didn't give a crap about Wesley Mathews before, but now I hate his guts. Really, all I saw from him at Marquette was bricking 3 pointers, now he is running his mouth about UW.

Scott Tappa said...

Maybe I'm just more sensitive than you, Edward, but when I was 16 if one of my friends said something negative about me it hurt like a bitch. So if it was hundreds of people who were going to be watching my every move for the next five years who were saying these things, it would have hurt that much more.

And maybe here's where you could say "if you're going to play big-time college basketball you need to be tougher than Scott Tappa was," and you'd be right, but I lean toward sympathy.

Wes rode James' and McNeal's coattails for three years, had one good year, and now he's an expert.

Timster said...

I'm Scott on this one. Hurt feelings aside, is there any reason for Badger fans to conduct themselves with a little class toward teenaged kids? Especially a local kid?

I can be as obnoxious as anyone in the anonymity of the message board - no question - but I really felt that the nastiness toward this kid was stomach-turning. Even if everything the "anonymous source" told Schultz were true - and it looks like it wasn't - why pile on with the negativity? Because he decommitted. Period. That's just embarrassing.

Tom said...

Hopefully he'll reconsider. Most kids would do anything for a chance to suit up with J.P. Gavinski.