Former Miami Hurricanes cornerback Antonio Crawford is reportedly transferring to West Virginia and it conjured up the philosophical thought experiment regarding a tree falling in the forest and whether it makes a sound if no one is around to hear it.
If a former Canes athlete who smack-talked the program decides to transfer after an average-at-best run during in his two years in Coral Gables, does anyone really care?
Crawford played in 38 games for Miami, but only amassed 58 tackles, eight pass break-ups and one interception over two seasons. He’ll now spend the 2015 sidelined due to transfer rules and will be eligible for 2016.
For guys who are clamoring for playing time and yearn to be starters, does transferring even make sense when the first action is to sit out an entire season per NCAA rules?
All this Crawford chatter began kicking up late February; the former Canes corner coming off as another present-day, entitled athlete complaining about not getting enough love and what not.
The junior-to-be immediately did what many of his counterparts are prone to do in today’s culture; using a social media platform for some passive-aggressive rants. Crawford delivered some gems, such as, “When was the last time u did something for the last time?”, accompanied with an image of him on the field in his Canes practice garb.
Fans immediately took the bait, began questioning the cornerback and he let it be known, in one form or another, that he’d soon be on the move. Crawford then delivered the now infamous, head-scratching gem, “I’m like a piece of gold that gets treated like a piece of silver, therefore I’m out!”
Crawford again took to social media this past Sunday, letting anyone who cares know that he’s headed to Morgantown.
“Just wanna thank the lord for blessing me with this amazing opportunity. New school, new number same dream. Proud to say I’ll be a Mountaineer for the next 2 years. WVU is my new home!”, Crawford posted on Instagram, with an image of him in WVU blue, sporting a No. 4.
Crawford’s reasons for departing may be completely valid and in his best interest. Maybe the coaching staff did undervalue him. Maybe he’s not a fan of the scheme and he feels that he’ll get a chance to shine elsewhere.
All of that is good and well, but the entitlement, overall pompous attitude and process are still off-base and are indicative of a character flaw and a heavy dose of immaturity.
Fact remains, if Crawford had his head on right, his work ethic in place and was making more plays, he’d have started more than 2 games in 38 tries at Miami.
The cornerback position has been far from an abundance of talent over the past few years—relying on underclassmen, as well as a JUCO transfer in Ladarius Gunter—a kid out of Fort Scott Community College in Kansas, who earned playing time over more highly-touted recruits, proving that hard work does pay off.
This has hardly been the Ed Reed, Sean Taylor or Antrel Rolle era of defensive back at The U. Hell, it’s not even the DeMarcus Van Dyke, Brandon Harris and Brandon Merriweather era.
The position has been wide open for anyone who wanted to put in the work and lock down a starting gig and if Crawford couldn’t consistently beat out the Canes’ recent crop of starters, that doesn’t bode well for his overall future.
Instead of putting in work, paying dues and proving doubters wrong, it’s become acceptable to bail out at the first signs of adversity.
Not getting the love you deserve? Go get it elsewhere. Do what you have to do. Take care of yourself first. Money. Power. Respect. Blah, blah, blah.
Godforbid some long-term thinking is employed and some life lessons taught and learned along the way.
Crawford may land on his feet just fine, but even if so he still loses in the process—choosing short-term thinking and the easy way out, opposed to sizing up a life setback and learning how to properly negotiate the rugged terrain; skills that will pay dividends down the road later in life.