A sad day for Seattle:
a newspaper sells its soulRich Linde, 29 January 2008
bless Curtis Williams and his family; may C-Dub’s soul rest in peace.
This website will always be dedicated to the memory of Curtis Williams,
Currently, the Seattle
Times is running a four-part series of articles questioning the
integrity of coaches and administrators associated with Washington's
2000 Rose Bowl team. Using documents not available at that time,
according to the Times, the Times' investigative journalists depict "a
disturbing level of criminal conduct and hooliganism by the players on
went too far. It is as if the Times sold its soul for increased readership
-- at the expense of former Husky player
Curtis Williams, who eventually passed away (May 2002) from the effects
of a spinal cord injury suffered on the football field in October 2000.
The story indicates a
pattern of spousal abuse over a five-year period, which previously was
not widely known, and kept from public knowledge over the last eight
Curtis was a lousy
student, the story says. He'd spent time in jail and was a wanted felon,
It is as if the
newspaper, in dire need of bolstering its flagging circulation, trashed,
in one fell swoop, what had been a fond, lasting memory of a Husky hero.
As a result, hearts are broken, and fans are disquieted -- lumps in their throats, with tears welling
in their eyes as fond memories of Curtis Williams are shredded
irresponsibly during the reading of the story.
It is as if each
intemperate word were a cowardly Lilliputian, sniping at our defenseless
Didn't Curtis suffer
enough, confined to a bed in his brother's house, reliving the events in
his young life, day by day? Why have his family relive those memories
that haunted him on his last days on earth.
At this time, there has
been no response
from Husky assistant coach J. D. Williams, Curtis' older brother, and
last and most importantly, Curtis is not here to defend himself, in what
must be taken as a cowardly act by the Times.
By that I mean, if
C-Dub were still alive, paralyzed from the neck down and on a
ventilator, would the Times have written today's article?
Of course not, the
public backlash would have been enormous.
Times' story concludes, "Michelle (his wife) also attended the
along with Kymberly (his daughter). To this day, Michelle wishes Curtis
were alive and part of his daughter's life — to teach her how to drive,
to be there when she graduates."
I wonder how Michelle
feels about this hatchet job done on Curtis? It's also a sad day for
Kimberly, not just for the Seattle Times. I wonder how this story will
affect the rest of Kimberly's life.
In the photo above,
Rick Neuheisel presents Curtis William's folded up jersey to his parents
at the graveside service following C-Dub's funeral. Ironically,
Jerramy Stevens (left) and Anthony Kelley (center), featured in chapters
one and four of the Times' stories, respectively, stand in the
In my opinion, there
are a number of factors that motivate the Seattle Times’ stories. The
summarizes the conclusions reached in our previous article on this subject:
-- Sensationalism – the
need to sell papers and accumulate page reads on the Internet.
-- Crossroads – A new AD
is needed; the coach is in hot water; the UW needs funding for
renovating Husky Stadium; Rick Neuheisel is back. The current void,
which these stories fill, provides their timing, and now a question
needs to be asked as UW searches for a new AD. Is the university willing
to sell its soul and return to the winning-at-all costs attitude that
led to a Rose Bowl championship team in 2000, this by firing Tyrone
Willingham if he produces another losing season at UW and, as a
consequence, replacing him with another coach, most likely Jim Mora if
he’s available? Or should another AD, like Todd Turner, be hired, the
hiring of whom will stay Willingham’s integrity-minded course?
-- Bashing football -- On
a higher level, the elitists at the Times, in pursuit of a Pulitzer
Prize in investigative journalism, have written a series of stories
aimed at bashing college football, using the UW and its 2000 football
team as a model. It’s necessary to understand the political climate in
Seattle, which is anti-big business. The Times’ stories join the likes
of “The Hundred Yard Lie,” “The Junction Boys,” and “Playmakers,” et al.
-- Bashing Rick Neuheisel
-- The Seattle media treated Rick unfairly during his tenure as coach at
the University of Washington, mainly because the media despises big-time
college football. The lead hit man in the Seattle media still blames
Rick and Barbara for the escalating salaries in college football. To the
elitists at the Times, Neuheisel is a symbol of what is wrong with
college football. These stories propagate that myth.
In my opinion, all of
the above feed the motivation for the Times’ series and are not meant to
be taken individually.