Monday, August 1, 2011

Jason Garrett Insists Dallas Cowboy Rookies Have To Earn Their Star - Seriously, Coach?

It looks like Dallas Cowboy Head Coach Jason Garrett has already started in on the hazing of rookies in running his first NFL training camp.  In a move that probably means little to anyone but his boss, Jerry Jones, Garrett has announced that all the rookies in camp will have to earn the right to wear the Star logo on their helmet.
"The star is very important to us," Garrett said after Monday's walkthrough practice. "The star is an international symbol. It's the Dallas Cowboys. And the players hear me say that a lot. The star means something.
"This team has been around 51 years, and it's a great tradition. You have to earn the right to wear that star, and we're very clear with the players about that. Just because you sign with the Dallas Cowboys doesn't mean you earned that thing yet."
That's a nice sentiment, Coach, but what you are going to do when those rookies have to put on the official uniform for their first pre-season game on August 11? Everyone who plays just suddenly earns it? 

Isn't the whole point of earning the Star simply means making the team? Aren't they both one and the same?

For that matter, how about free agents who have just been brought onto the team? They haven't worn the Star before.  

A huge piece of irony here is that one of those rookies is fourth-string quarterback Zack Eskridge.  Zack's grandfather is Jack Eskridge, former first Cowboys equipment manager and the guy who designed the current incarnation of the Dallas Star Logo.

Yes, the Star means a lot to Cowboy fans, but this is a little piece of nonsense hazing in a professional sports league where a guy who earns his star one week is traded the next. Besides, rookies are already being made to fetch breakfast and carry veterans helmets/pads off the practice field. Why is the coach hazing them as well?

So when they've done enough to Garrett's liking and they've earned their star, is there going to be some sort of big initiation ceremony? I imagine it to be something like this, with each rookie playing the part of Nemo being woken out of their training camp bed for a midnight ceremony.

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