Question: Should Michael Vick and Pete Rose be reinstated into professional sports? Should Michael Vick be reinstated to play in the NFL even though he is a convicted criminal? What about Pete Rose, although his conviction was for income tax evasion? Should he be allowed to be reinstated after 20 years of MLB suspension for gambling?
One of the most controversial topics to arise in the NFL in the past couple years is not whether or not the sudden death overtime — first team to score wins — is inherently unfair and outright asinine, is that of Michael Vick, who was convicted of charges generated from trafficking in an interstate dog fighting ring in December 2007. Released last week, the questions on most football fans’ minds has been whether or not Michael Vick would be reinstated in the NFL and, if so, when?
Whether he should be or not has become moot. He has…
The Orlando Sentinel reported Monday that NFL Commissioner Pete Goodell gave Michael Vick a conditional reinstatement to the league. The reinstatement allows Michael Vick to play the last two preseason games. He will then undergo a six game suspension. Afterward, he will be eligible to play — fully reinstated — in Week 7 of the regular season.
Of course, that is if any NFL team will sign him to their roster. Michael Vick was cut by the Atlanta Falcons, the team for which he was starting quarterback when he was convicted of the dog fighting-related charges, in June and is eligible to be signed by any other team in the NFL.
If no team in the NFL signs him, Michael Vick will most likely play for the Orlando franchise in the upstart UFL. In the regional allocation of players based on NFL teams, he was automatically assigned to Orlando.
Commissioner Michael Huyghue said in a statement: “We applaud Commissioner Goodell’s well reasoned decision to conditionally reinstate Michael Vick. The Commissioner’s decision is consistent with the UFL and its fans view that Vick deserves a second chance at redemption and in resuming his professional football career.”
Which only proves that there is diplomacy even in professional football…
… something that is sorely lacking when it comes to talk of Pete Rose, former Cincinnati Reds player and coach. Many believe that Pete Rose should never be reinstated. He was suspended from Major League Baseball after he was found gambling on the sport while playing and coaching (although he maintains that he never once bet against his team).
According to the New York Daily News, after home run legend Hank Aaron’s speech in Cooperstown, New York, this past weekend, where he mentioned Pete Rose and that he should be included in the Baseball Hall of Fame, rumors have followed that Commissioner Bud Selig may indeed be considering such a move.
If Selig were to grant Pete Rose a reinstatement into the League once more, he would then be eligible for being voted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, which many believe he deserves to be in. But to get in, he would have to be voted in by the 65 members that make up the Veterans Committee. Some believe that there are enough who resent that Pete Rose gambled on the game to keep him out.
“Charlie Hustle,” as Rose was nicknamed, all-time Major League leader in hits (4,256), games played (3,562), at bats (14,053), and outs (10,328). He won three World Series rings, three batting titles, one MVP award, two Gold Gloves, the Rookie of the Year Award, and made 17 All-Star appearances at an unequaled five different positions (2B, LF, RF, 3B, and 1B). There is little doubt that his personal statistics prove that he should be in the Hall of Fame.
But his reinstatement is uncertain. Perhaps if Pete Goodell were to give Bud Selig a call…
New York Daily News