The National Football League  lifted its suspension on former Virginia Tech football star quarterback Michael Vick, clearing the way for a team to sign him to play in the upcoming season.

Assuming, of course, that any team is willing to sign the convicted felon who ran a dogfighting ring while playing for both Tech and the Atlanta Falcons NFL franchise. Somebody probably will but some teams, like The Washington Redskins, actually show some moral courage and say “no way.”

In most circumstances, I believe a person who served their time for a crime deserves a chance at redemption but Vick got off with an incredibly light sentence and has not shown any real remorse for his crimes.

Like his criminally-delinquent brother Marcus , Michael Vick is just another example of Tech football coach Frank Beamer’s willingness to recruit thugs and misfits in order to produce winning football teams for the school’s grandiose, but unnecessary, football program.

Testimony during his trial showed Vick ran in dogfighting circles while at Tech. An investigation into Vick’s involvement in dogfighting rings in Southwestern Virginia was quashed after Tech officials intervened. Blacksburg and Montgomery County police officers tell me their departments were too often forced to cover up Vick’s run-ins with the law because of pressure from Tech officials. The school also threw its weight around when other athletes got into trouble. Sources within the area’s law enforcement agencies tell me much of this would have come out in trial if Vick had not copped a plea which makes me wonder what role Tech played in Vick’s deal with the government.

Comments Norfolk-area resident Kevin Soule on Reuters Blog:

Apparently most people just don’t get it. Michael Vick is a thug, his whole life people have been sweeping his troubles under the rug. I live in Norfolk, VA and am well aware of the cover up of his problems starting when he was in junior high school, through Virginia Tech and now the National Football League.

Techsideline.Com columnist Will Stewart says Beamer gets too close to his players and their families and this hurts Tech:

He gets so close to his players and their families that he can’t hand out the harsh discipline required to reel the kids in. Beamer and his staff have noted for years that when they recruit these players, they promise their families that they’ll take care of them. So when the kids step out of line, often repeatedly, the coaching staff treats them like you would your own son, giving them second chances, and more.

This approach is a kind, caring approach. It works well on the recruiting trail, because it creates a family atmosphere at Virginia Tech, and recruits and their families respond positively to it. They trust Frank Beamer and his staff to care for their sons. But when athletes embarrass the university, it angers the fan base and reflects poorly on Virginia Tech — and lately, Frank Beamer himself.

Beamer should have lost his job over his cover-ups of the criminal acts of both Michael and Marcus Vick but Tech has become a school more interested in big-time college football glory than education. It’s a shame that an educational institution once known more for its world-class engineering school and agriculture programs is now the poster child for pampered athletes and deranged students that go on murder rampages or decapitate their ex- lovers.

Vick does not deserve to ever play again in the NFL and, if there was any real justice in this whole despicable mess, Beamer would be fired and banned from college football. But if that happened, he’d probably get hired as an NFL coach and sign Michael Vick as his quarterback.

(Updated Aug. 1, 1009, to include new material)

26 COMMENTS

  1. What exactly is that supposed to mean? Did he drink underage by chance like I’m sure you did in college? What exactly were these….”questions”….that should have immediately made Beamer realize that Michael Vick should be thrown off the football team like his brother…WAS!

    You ignorant twit.

  2. …at how many poison pens come out when football players are disparaged. No matter how much evidence was actually brought against those players. Apparently football celebrity, like Hollywood celebrity, can buy you all kinds of free passes.

  3. What a bunch of moral grandstanding (fine, it’s your right and apparently the purpose of your web page?) laced with ridiculous assertions (not so fine). For example, to state that Vick “got off with an incredibly light sentence” is a joke. Two years in jail (during what could have been prime football years) and the loss of $100+ Million seems to me quite a penalty indeed. And to drag Frank Beamer into this is a bit silly. I think it’s safe to say that college football coaches in general get to see the best versions of their players, since players are well aware that their football coach is the one person in their world who has the biggest influence on their college football careers. It has been said that Beamer gets too close to his players, and this may be true, but stop with the conspiracy stuff.

    I’m not sure what you do for a living (it can’t be this web page), but you actually seem to be reporting new information in the latter part of this post when you speak about what local law enforcement has been telling you with regard to cover-ups of Vick’s run-ins. It’s too bad that you provide no names and that there seems to be precious little comparable reporting elsewhere about all the cover-ups. One of the folks who posted a comment suggests that he had heard bad things when MV was in school. What were they?

    What Vick did was terrible and he paid a very high price. I don’t have any idea what his level of remorse is, but for you to comment about whether he’s remorseful seems like quite a reach. You throw a lot of stones. I hope your own house is in order.

    • I realize that this is an old post; but I find myself revisiting this due to his recent win of an NFL award honoring courage, unbelievable as that is to me. I couldn’t understand how that could be.
      Then I read your comment that “two years in jail and the loss of $100+ million” was a stiff penalty. It seems you (and the Eagles) think that his fame and financial loss somehow makes his (less than) two years served more meaningful than for someone earning $50K. By that thinking, Warren Buffet could’ve done the same thing, served two DAYS and you’d proclaim him to have paid his debt to society.
      The law should be applied equeally; Vick got of easy and is now lauded for merely facing the consequences of his cowardly deeds.
      Suckers.

  4. Frank Beamer was well aware of Michael Vick’s activities. He admitted covering up for Marcus Vick so he could play in a bowl game. The coverup with police has been reported before, not only by Mr. Thompson but by others.

    I’m not surprised that the Tech faithful continue to wear blinders when it comes to Mr. Beamer and his actions. I’m a Tech alumni and I’m ashamed of the actions of both Michael Vick and Frank Beamer.

  5. But it’s you “A. Frampton”. Did you learn that language at VT? Is that where you learned how to communicate?
    I’m afraid it is you and your inarticulate and insulting posting here that does more to prove that VT is nothing more than the “Cow College”, I have always heard it was. Shame on you.

  6. I noticed you had nothing to say about the asshole writers insinuations about the 32 murdered at VT…your alma mater.

    What activities of Michael Vick was Frank Beamer “well aware” of exactly, and what evidence do you have of that? You are throwing nothing but slander.

    Let’s lay it out there…what EXACTLY are you accusing Beamer of and who is involved. DO NOT bring up Marcus Vick, he was suspended for an entire season, given another chance which he blew, and summarily kicked off the team. So what exactly is your problem with Beamer, and do not be vague. Names, dates, quotes.

    You will have none of course, you pathetic excuse for a VT alum.

  7. The mass murders did happen at Tech. So did the decapitation of a student. These are facts Mr. Frampton and the article reported the incidents and noted that they, along with the misdeeds of Michael Vick, are all that some people know about the school.

    As I read the article, the writer did not "insinuate" anything. He said our school has become a "poster child" for pampered athletes and violent crimes. Sadly, I have to agree.

    Frank Beamer talked often about how close he was to the Vick family. Vick’s father told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Vick staged dog fighting events in the family garage as a teenager and said he told Beamer about the problem. After the dog fighting story broke, the Virginia media reported that Beamer and Tech officials often intervened with local police authorities when a football player was arrested. One story that I recall reading reported Beamer and the Tech athletic director visited the Blacksburg police chief during the investigation of Vick’s dog fighting activities while attending Tech and that the investigation was suspended following that meeting. The chief "retired" shortly after wards.

    Beamer admitted covering up an arrest of younger brother Marcus Vick so he could play in a bowl game, the same bowl game where Vick stomped on the hand of an opposing player and embarrassed Tech on national TV. This show a pattern by a football coach who will do anything to protect his players.

    I suggest you conduct a Google search on both Vick and Beamer. You might find it enlightening.

  8. It’s always amazing how one opinion can get people stirred up. I mean, a man writes an article just stating his opinion, and people can’t wait to pop off in responding. People are upset with whatever they can and want to be these days. Now since i’ve started, here is my take. First off, I live in Christiansburg, have lived here all my life, and I love it. Having preference on small town life, the growth that this town has seen in the last 10 years or so used to kind of upset me. I look around now and realize that the explosion in growth was actually managed somewhat well. I like the fact that I can live somewhat isolated, not having my neighbor right on top of me; and yet still be able to drive 10 minutes and find some conveniences. I’m sure that many people feel the same way I do, whether they have grown up here or moved here for that reason. Even during this recession, our locality on the whole, including radford and blacksburg have not been adversely affected. The truth can be funny, brutal, among other things. So, having said that, the truth of this matter is that this locality is doing well because we have two great universities on each side of us, being Radford and Virginia Tech University. Virginia Tech would not be as big as it is today without the advances in the football program. Furthermore, it goes without saying that Mike Vick is the biggest reason for the football program being where it is today. Frank Beamer is walking a tight rope, trying to please a bunch of tight ass alumni who only want to win, and trying to please the public, who demand that everyone in the public spotlight be held to a higher standard, while we the people live as sinners all day, we ask for God’s forgiveness and think that we are so much better for it. None of the people criticizing Mike Vick grew up in his shoes, in his home, had millions of dollars and temptation thrown at them. Don’t think for a second that I side with or condone what Mike Vick did, but can I honestly say that I wouldn’t do the things he did if I had the world in my palm either. Worry about your own lives, and let everyone else live theirs. That’s my opinion, and opinions are like assholes….everybody has one and they stink. Peace

  9. Unfortunately it is not only at the college level but starts with parents and the almighty dollar. With the lure of playing in the pro’s and making big money parents push the coaches at every level. Parents in peewee’s start out hounding coaches and that escalates at jr. high and high school. Coaches are under unbelievable pressure to WIN. Winning isn’t everything it is the ONLY thing. High school students can’t go to college with out a C average so there it starts. Students are treated differently starting very early if they show any promise on the field of battle. When they do get to college they have made it and all that matters is the WIN because of the almighty dollar. Football brings millions into the school. Unfortunately we have lost the fact that Universities are institutions of higher learning. If that is the case than coaches should be responsible for educating their athletes on how to behave on and off the field of play and that is where I believe that in our little corner of the college football world is where Frank Beamer has done a disservice to the students entrusted to his care. He has go to areas of the state to pick out the best players for his team. When they sign with the team at that point the coaches should be responsible for actions on and off the field.
    Vicks actions have indeed brought shame and disgrace on Virginia Tech, the administration and the coaching staff. Vick has served what our society deemed appropriate for his actions and should be able to reenter society and do as the law allows.

  10. Here, you are graciously offered an opportunity to express an opinion… and you do. You follow it by proclaiming, in language that appears, after reading Mr. Frampton’s posts, typical of VT fans somewhat less than masterful command of the English language, that all opinions stink.

    When you state, “we the people live as sinners all day, we ask for God’s forgiveness and think that we are so much better for it”… be kind enough to speak “only” for yourself. Your assumption that the rest of humanity shares your supernatural delusions is both insulting and indicative of your Christiansburg sophistication. [read: lack there of]

  11. Coaches who win big in college football have a hard time adjusting to the pro game. Steve Spurrier will tell you his two years with the Redskins were the worst of his career.

    Meanwhile, Michael Vick plans to appear next weekend at an event in his honor in Newport News. Not surprisingly this has stirred up those who post comments to the Virginian-Pilot website.

  12. Danny, I think it was this bit of over-the-top rhetoric:
    “Vick does not deserve to ever play again in the NFL”. That isn’t “disparaging” that is “denying the man a right to make a living.”

    It captures the emotional irrationality of the debate.

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