We Get Letters

Heres some responses to recent reader questions:

1. Several readers asked about the sarcastic tone of comments Ive made about quarterback Matt Leinart. Most of my remarks revolve around his constant TV and celebrity appearances.

Its ironic because Leinarts steadfastly claimed for two years he does not care about celebrity or hanging out with actors or more interestingly to him, actresses. Yet, he became the first college football player to be represented by Hollywood mega-talent agency CAA and always finds time doing ads for Desperate Housewives or appear in fashion shows.
Several of his teammates found it ironic that he seemed more interested in hanging around celebrities Wilmer Valderamma and Nick Lachey than any of them last season.
Hes already displayed the petulant behavior of an actor by firing his agent (Leigh Steinberg) before even been drafted. His desire to be the No. 2 pick in the draft caused his pseudo-agent, Chuck Price, to tell the Nashville Tennessean that if the Titans stayed at No. 3, “they might not have a chance to get Matt. The one thing those teams will realize by seeing Matt and getting to know Matt is that he is a franchise quarterback.
Maybe. But why not keep your mouth shut instead of trying to drag the Titans into the draft muck? Tennessee offensive coordinator Norm Chows always been faithful and supportive of Leinart and the Titans even flew their own receivers to Los Angeles for his workout. If you want the Jets to trade up to No. 2, then tell the Jets without trying to be coy with the Titans. Or staging a phony trip to New Orleans, which signed quarterback Drew Brees and doesnt need him.
Before anyone says Im out to get Leinart, let me just say offer a quick story about Leinarts freshman year. In April, 2002, I reported that Leinart was detained by campus security on Fraternity Row because of several altercations that broke out one evening involving football players and other students.
“Nobody wanted to arrest anybody and it was mutual combat, but it was a violation of the rules of our community,” said former Robert Taylor, the former deputy chief of USC’s department of public safety.
Student affairs did investigate the incident however, which also involved wide receivers Devin Pitts and Steve Stevenson.
If I had it out for Leinart, I probably could have mentioned that incident many, many times in stories. Imagine how interested all those national media outlets, like ESPN, People magazine or even the National Enquirer would have been to learn about that incident involving the most famous player in the country? Or at least would want to ask Leinart about it?
But I did not exploit the issue because I wanted to be fair and only and wrote about it once. I only wish Leinart displayed some of the same fairness in dealing with writers, especially when begrudgingly agreed to give us five minutes to speak to him each week.

2. One reader asked why No. 3 quarterback Mike McDonalds stats appeared better than freshman Mark Sanchez in some scrimmages. McDonald was going against makeshift defenses (walk-ons, reserves) while Sanchez went against the first team.

3. Basketball forward Jeremy Barr is transferring because of playing time. He does not know where he will transfer yet.

4. Another reader asked about whether the Trojans took recruit Broderick Green from Arkansas too early. Pete Carroll loves big, physical backs like Green and the Trojans will sign several running backs this year, so its considered a low-risk offer.

5. Back to Leinart, no I dont know when he is scheduled to appear on Punkd.

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