Heisman Hopeful no more
Saturday morning I set out to walk down to the river to watch some of the runners in the EWEB race. On the way back I stopped by Starbucks for a tall soy cinnamon dolce latte. As I was about to leave I picked up the sports section from The Register-Guard. I stood in shock reading the article declaring to the world that Dennis Dixon was out...for good. He will be no part of the lineup in the next two games or even the bowl game thanks to a torn ACL. An ACL that was in fact torn on November 3, a detail he chose to keep private from the public and even his own teammates and announce as a sprain. He then tried to play on it, brace and all, last Thursday against Arizona. With one unfortunate pivot, he was unable to play for nearly the entire game at which point a mediocre at best, second string quarterback, Brady Leaf was brought in. An intercepted pass run for a touchdown by Arizona proved to be just the beginning of a sad loss we shouldn't have had to endure.
For just a few short minutes this devoted fan stood there in her own little fuzzy bubble unable to fathom the fact that Dennis Dixon, the #1 Heisman candidate, had finished his college career. Granted, if his knee heals perfectly after the surgery, he may have some hope for the NFL, but who really knows at this point. I just stood there trying not to cry. As an athlete and someone with a true passion for athletics, I know what this must feel like and mean to Dixon. My heart breaks for him and an entire team that had National Championship dreams.
My frustration with the article, the media and the sports world's attitude in general is that they treat the injury as though he's died. Yes, he's out for the season, but it doesn't mean he is not a good football player, person, athlete or student. The article mentioned as many others have, that he's no longer a Heisman candidate. If you ask me, he still deserves to be in the running. With just two season games and a bowl game left in his senior year, he's hardly unable to prove what a great football player he is. But with the fear our society has of anyone or anything that is damaged, injured or imperfect, he has no chance. Dennis Dixon is Heisman Hopeful no more.
Dixon, my heart aches for you. Thanks for a great four years. Your smile, tenacity, athleticism and leadership have inspired beyond just those on the astro turf. Go DUCKS!