It happens every fall. Usually quite a few times. Some football player, whose team is either struggling or has something to prove, gets in front of the media and guarantees a victory.
While there is usually more to lose than gain, from making these statements, they continue to be made. If said player’s team wins, then great. If they lose, they are usually clowned for a little while. And that’s all we usually hear about it.
Oklahoma’s Courtney Paris — the 1st female 4-time AP All-American in Women’s Basketball — went on the record and said she would pay back her entire scholarship to OU (about $64,000) if she and her teammates did not deliver a National Championship. This was not a young woman who just felt like flapping her gums for media attention. She wanted that title, and wanted to show everyone how serious she was about it.
The Sooners bowed out in the National Semifinal game, to Lousiville, so they did not get the chance to play for the Championship. Minutes after her defeat, Miss Paris, affirmed her intention to pay back her schollie to the school.
“I do make good on the guarantee. Not today, though. Obviously, I don’t have $64,000 waiting, but I do make good on it.”
Courtney is going to be a star in the NBA, and possibily overseas (if she so chooses), so she would be able to reimburse the school. However, it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. Oklahoma AD Joe Castiglione has gone on record to essentially say that it was more meaningful that she stayed 4 years and contributed greatly to the team and program. In other words, while the school appreciates her gesture, “your money’s no good here, Courtney!”
Male athletes make these claims all the time and don’t put anything behind them. I’d like to see them be held more accountable, but they won’t because the mainstream media doesn’t care. This makes me respect Courtney all that much more. She didn’t need to go that far, but she did. And WNBA money is not NBA money, so it’s not like it’d be pocket change for her to pay back.
Leave it to a woman to take the phrase “put up or shut up” to the next level. Well done, C. Paris.
P.S. It’s refreshing to me to see a normal spelling of the name “Courtney”.