Carson Palmer Ripping Ohio State Was Cool, Apologizing Was Weak
Given that I’m a Bruin and dislike darn near everything SC (with the exception of a few reasonable Trojan friends and other things), it’s pretty hard to say that I have a favorite Trojan. So I guess if I had a Trojan who I disliked the least, it would probably be Carson Palmer. It’s pretty tough when you have a guy beat on your school like a drum (while you’re a student no less) and pretty much hate him, and then see your favorite NFL team take him with the first pick in the draft and make him the face of their franchise. So no, I don’t like Carson, but I dislike him the least. Keep in mind that in addition to performing like one of the top five QBs in the NFL the last three years, Carson has also done pretty much everything right (with the exception of a few ill-advised hot dog ads) and stuck to saying all the right things from day one. Rather than complain about going to the Bengals, he embraced the opportunity and vowed to turn them around. Rather than rip on Chad for being Ocho Cinco or his teammates for getting arrested, Carson’s pretty much avoided the fray. In addition to maintaining a good image, Carson has a lot of school and Pac-10 pride, both of which I appreciate. So it was pretty cool when Carson Palmer ripped on Ohio State when he joined PMS on KLAC recently:
I cannot stand the Buckeyes and having to live in Ohio and hear those people talk about their team, it drives me absolutely nuts. We got Keith Rivers out there and we got Frostee Rucker, we finally got a couple other ‘SC guys. It’s amazing to hear what those guys think about that university and what they think about that football program and Tressel and all the crap I got to put up with being back there.
“I just can’t wait for two years from now when ‘SC comes to the ‘Shoe and I get to, hopefully have a home game that weekend and I can go out there and watch us pound on them on their own turf and kind of put all the talk to rest, because I’m really getting sick of it. I just can’t wait for this game to get here so they can come to the Coliseum and experience L.A. and get an old fashioned, Pac 10 butt-whooping and go back to the Big Ten.”
Now that I can stand for! Carson’s very much a fan like us who listens to sports radio and watches local sports on TV and gets fired up about his team. Does it get much better than that? And this is the same Carson who ripped Nebraska on The Jim Rome Show before USC ran through them last year. Like I said, always appreciate a guy with a lot of school and Pac-10 pride. Unfortunately just as Carson was racking up all the cool points, he had to go out and issue a statement.
“I’m a Trojan all the way, and I was talking to a Trojan audience in California. I guess I got a little fired up, as all good fans will do. But I really do respect the Buckeyes, and I know their fans are passionate, too.
“I hope they all understand I’m just looking forward to a big game for my school against a very tough opponent, and that it’s all in the good fun of a rivalry. You don’t have a real rivalry unless both sides are great teams.”
Like I said, the apology was a little weak, but given that he’s the franchise icon for the Bengals, it was kind of necessary to issue the statement. At least he didn’t back down from his original remarks too much and instead just clarified them.