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The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

The student news site of Guilford College

The Guilfordian

NFL sportscaster is arrested: will it call for a change in NFL DUI policies?

The man who asked, “Do you believe in miracles?” will answer to the judge. Al Michaels, famous sportscaster, was arrested on April 19 for driving under the influence.

After making an illegal U-turn, Michaels, 68, slurred his speech when pulled over by police.

TMZ reported that Michaels cooperated and tested just above the alcohol limit, blowing a .08 and .09 BAC into two breathalyzers.

Michaels called the play-by-play of the “Miracle on Ice” at the 1980 Olympics, the earthquake delay of game three in the 1989 World Series, and commentated with John Madden for Monday Night Football.

He currently anchors primetime NFL games.

“I love watching Sunday Night Football,” said first-year Ben Randazzo. “Michaels’ voice is synonymous with football. I really hope he keeps his job because he makes listening to Chris Collingsworth bearable.”

Michaels’ arrest led to a bigger issue concerning the NFL, as his incident will only add fuel to the fire. Players, coaches and now announcers have been irresponsible.

“I think it sucks that NFL players get arrested for drinking and driving,” said first-year Liliana Bernhardt. “These guys are role models for kids, and it’s not like they don’t have the resources to get somebody else to drive them.”

The Player Protect program provides a 24-hour driving service to professional athletes. Any player can contact this taxi-like service for a ride home in a limo or luxury SUV.

“There is no excuse for professional athletes to get DUIs,” said first-year Jeremiah Long. “These guys get paid millions of dollars and still mess up. They could end up hurting or even killing someone, like Donte Stallworth.”

Stallworth killed a 59-year-old construction crane operator while driving drunk in Miami.

Josh Brent, nose tackle for the Dallas Cowboys, killed teammate Jerry Brown Jr., a 25-year-old member of the Cowboys practice squad, last December. As Brent rocketed down the highway at speeds exceeding 110 mph, he struck a curb and flipped the vehicle.

Did Michaels not learn anything?

“DUI in the NFL is not a new occurrence,” said senior Howard Hurt. “But, I hope the death of an NFL player will help change league policies.”

Although many are quick to criticize these NFL players, some believe that famous athletes are no worse than other people.

“I don’t think they do any more than athletes of other sports or other people in general,” said senior Alex Berzon. “You just hear about them more because they happen to be known athletes.”

But, many think the NFL should crack down on players.

“It’s a bad impression (of) what the NFL is about for the young adults watching them,” said sophomore Satiir Stevenson. “It does not change my opinion of them. Everyone makes mistakes.”

The NFL has pushed to improve player safety and limit head-to-head contact. Changing the rules of the game stirs controversy, but increasing the penalty for DUIs should not.

“The only way to get it through these player’s heads is by increasing the suspensions,” said sophomore Cameron McDowell.

Michaels will appear in court on June 26. Even though Michaels is not a player, he is a symbol for the league.  It is not yet determined whether NBC will penalize this football icon.

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