Aaron Hernandez fate should be lesson to athletes of Michigan State, beyond


It has been a good and bad day for the world of sports as one of the biggest boneheads out there, Aaron Hernandez, has been prosecuted and the verdict states that he will serve life in prison without parole. You may be asking yourself what this has to do with Michigan State. Easy answer: it has to do with all athletes everywhere, Michigan State included.

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  • The Spartans are one of the top programs in the nation, bringing in the top talent in both football and basketball each and every year. Sometimes, you get athletes who take their position on the team for granted and land in some legal troubles — such as Delton Williams and Macgarrett Kings Jr. this offseason.

    However, this Aaron Hernandez verdict should be a lesson to those kids. No, these student-athletes aren’t murderers, but they are not quite aware of the fact that they are blessed with a great opportunity because of their talent. Something that should never be overlooked.

    Every year you see athletes throw everything away for dumb reasons. You see guys like Josh Gordon or Justin Blackmon with serious NFL talent just toss it in the trash because they think that there will always be a second chance. Guys like Johnny Manziel who have given into the hype and act like they’re above the law and above their respective teams.

    Kings and Williams have both gotten the wake-up calls they needed as they had both been left off the spring depth chart and given a taste of what life without football feels like.

    You see guys like Le’Veon Bell take a promising rookie year and put it in jeopardy over some marijuana and joyriding.

    Charles Rogers was, at one time, the most promising young receiver to come out of Michigan State in quite some time. What did he do? He threw it away because he took his great opportunity for granted. Where is he now? Well, more often than not, in legal trouble.

    These student-athletes need to look at the bad to realize the good. They need to understand that they have been handed a golden opportunity of free education and a chance to prove they belong at the next level, potentially landing a career in the professional ranks making millions of dollars.

    Oct 26, 2013; Champaign, IL, USA; Michigan State Spartans running back Delton Williams (22) runs the ball during the second half against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium. Michigan State won 42-3. Mandatory Credit: Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

    Hernandez took that for granted, putting himself in the position to be placed in prison for the remainder of his life because he thought it would be a good idea to teach someone a “lesson.” A once-promising career has turned into the “big house” for life.

    While no one in this program has to worry about being in prison for life, they need to keep an eye on what really matters: the team.

    Michigan State has built a family atmosphere. Players are always calling it that, picking up for each other’s slack while having each other’s back at the same time.

    Let Hernandez be a lesson to all athletes out there, not just at MSU. If you’re handed a golden opportunity, don’t blow it over a dumb mistake. Don’t throw everything away just to be “cool” or to be “one of the guys.”

    It’s always sad to see top talent disappear because of legal troubles. Too much these days, guys forget what they have and risk it for stupidity.

    Learn from someone else’s mistakes. Everything can be taken away in an instant. Luckily for MSU, Mark Dantonio and Tom Izzo, among other sports staffers, have built a winning atmosphere with quality athletes.

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