Thursday, August 12, 2010
In excellent, excellent news today, it was announced that Trevor Mbakwe would enter a pre-trial intervention program, finally ending our long national nightmare of this obvious frame job.
What that means is that Mbakwe agrees to do a small amount of community service, pay a small fine, and the charges are dropped. No record, no trial, no nothing. Perform these simple tasks, and he gets to go on with his life. Seems like a no-brainer, but some of the reaction I read today tended towards the negative. Questions arose such as "Why would he agree to this if he was actually innocent?" or "Isn't this an admission of some guilt?"
To these people I ask, "Are you a complete god damned moron?" How anybody can see this as an admission of guilt is beyond me. Other than the fact that, you know, it's explicitly stated it's not an admission of guilt, haven't you paid attention throughout this ordeal? It's gone on and on and on, despite Mbakwe's continued claims that he is innocent, and has dragged on long enough that he missed an entire year of his basketball career, and he hasn't even gotten to trial.
With an option in front of him where he merely has to pay a small fine and do some community service, ends up with a clean record, and gets to move on with his life, not to mention play basketball, I'm guessing he jumped at the chance to sign up for this. I would have to. Hell, anybody of sound mind would have. It's pretty simple: a slight inconvenience and you can move on with your life or a massive inconvenience and you can maybe move on with your life, but it would be at a later date, or you might not get to move on and things will just get worse for you.
Sorry, but anybody not meeting this news with a smile should probably shift their interests towards something more clean like college swimming or maybe volleyball.
Of course, two questions remained: Would the U let him back on the team and would he still want to be here?
Question #1 was answered right around 5pm tonight, when it was announced that Mbakwe was reinstated and eligible to play for the Gophers this season. So now, barring Tubby doing something weird, Mbakwe will be welcomed back with open arms and be eligible to begin practicing soon (I thought I heard the 20th) and will be able to travel with the team on their Canada trip. The bigger question is if he wants to still be here, or does he want to play for Memphis. It seems the feeling is he wants to be a Gopher, both locally and from his lawyer down in Florida, but it's in his hands. He would likely have to sit out yet another year to play for Memphis, so odds are he's coming to the Barn.
And that is news that could not have me more excited. I have heard so much about him and how good he has looked in practices and summer league that at this point I am expecting nothing less than Patrick Ewing-type domination (the good version from Georgetown, not the sissy jump shooter from the Knicks). Even if it turns out his offensive game is little more than dunking back offensive rebounds he should be big and strong enough to get plenty of opportunities to do just that, and his size and strength will allow Ralph to spend more time doing what he does best, mincing about outside the paint.
Now I love Ralph and think he's a good bet for Big Ten Player of the Year in two years, but I wouldn't list a strength of his as "banging in the paint." That's what Iverson was for, but Mbakwe should be bigger, stronger, blacker, and tougher than Colt. Really, I'm sure I'm setting myself up for disappointment, but this is basically what I expect out of Trevor this year:
Can we please call him Reign Man II?
And in closing, I'd like to leave you with a little bit of a transcript from Mbakwe's hearing that I obtained from a confidential informant:
Mbakwe: I got mind control over Deebo. He be like, "shut the fuck up" so I be quiet. But when he leave, I be talkin' again. What chain?