December 17, 2002
Party on down to the station house

Argh. My Trinity Tigers clinch a spot in the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl and the next thing I know their star quarterback is arrested for public intoxication while out celebrating on the Riverwalk. Help, I'm trapped in an After School Movie!

Trinity has not decided what to do about Roy Hampton yet. He's 23, so it was legal for him to imbibe, and public intoxication is a misdemeanor. I admit my bias here, but I don't see that this should prevent him from playing on Saturday. If he were the captain of the debate team and were set to go to a national tournament, would you expect the school to suspend him from the team for this transgression? I wouldn't.

For what it's worth, the drug and alcohol policy leaves the issue of drinking by those of legal age up to the individual:

Students are personally responsible for conforming their behavior so that it complies with state and local laws and the University’s alcoholic beverages policy. Trinity University respects students’ privacy and autonomy, assumes that they will behave legally and responsibly, and will not closely monitor the activities of individual students or members of student organizations.

Alcohol consumption is mostly forbidden on campus (students over 21 can drink in some dorms). That rule was loosely enforced when I was there - if you weren't causing a disturbance, no one really cared. That was a million years ago, of course, so take it for what it's worth. Punishment for violating school alcohol rules vary:

Violations of the alcohol policy are punishable by sanctions ranging from probation to community service, fines, referral for drug use assessment, eviction from the residence halls, or expulsion from the University.

I say leave it up to the coach and the courts. I have all kinds of contempt for schools that coddle and shield star athletes from their lawlessness in the name of Winning The Big Game, but I don't see any need to intervene here. Let Roy Hampton have his day in a Bexar County court when his case comes up, and let him play on Saturday.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 17, 2002 to Other sports | TrackBack