By Matt McCoy
Well here it is. The in-store video from the Publix grocery store where Heisman winner Jameis Winston of Florida State swiped $32 worth of crab legs.
In the police statement, Winston told officers he "forgot to pay," but the video shows otherwise. Winston appears to know exactly what he was doing from the moment he walked in the store.
At one point, he is about to walk out--shellfish in hand-- but shifts directions and makes another loop around the store. According to police report, that maneuver was to avoid walking in front of the security officer.
Is the $32 theft of crab legs a big deal? Of course not...but the video makes it clear that not only did Winston steal, he also lied. This wasn't a "mistake" or "youthful ignorance" or "forgetting to pay" as Winston called it. This was a guy who was intent on stealing.
Despite many well publicized problems, on balance college athletics are great. An overwhelming majority of today's student-athletes are not like Winston. They're good kids and good students who represent their teams and their institutions the right way. There are more kids like Aaron Craft or Adreian Payne than there are like Winston.
Unfortunately, however Winston is the becoming the poster boy for the world's anti-athlete jock haters. You may know some of them...the people who stereotype athletes as "dumb jocks" who are entitled and arrogant. That's the picture Winston is painting of himself. He seems to be a kid who believes that because he's a star, he is above conforming with society.
To be fair, I'm not around the kid. Maybe Winston is just a rough piece of clay that simply needs more molding. The good news is, there's plenty of time for that--he's only 20. Here's hoping Winston will learn, change for the better and become a terrific role model...but right now, I have my doubts.