File picture of a man smoking marijuana at a pro-marijuana rally at the University of Colorado in Boulder

Emmert ‘would be surprised if’ NCAA changed weed stance


For those thinking that FBS football programs in Colorado and Washington were the biggest winners Election Day, that may have been nothing more than a pipe dream, so to speak.

Citizens in the states of Colorado and Washington Tuesday approved proposals that decriminalized the use of marijuana (up to 28.5 grams), even for non-medicinal (recreational) purposes.  Shortly after it was announced the twin initiatives had passed, the line of thinking went that, with weed legal in those two states, it would help programs like Colorado, Colorado State, Washington and Washington State on the recruiting trail.

The head of the NCAA, though, doesn’t see that happening.

Marijuana has been on the NCAA’s list of banned substances, and president Mark Emmert said it would come as a surprise if the Association changed its stance in the wake of the drug being legalized in the two states.

“There hasn’t been any discussion to that effect, and I would be surprised if there was an interest in doing that,” Emmert said according to the Associated Press. “Our policies are our policies now, and I would be surprised if they change.”

An NCAA official further refined the group’s stance, reminding people that, yes, marijuana is still a banned substance.

“The NCAA banned drug and testing policies are not tied to whether a substance is legal for general population use,” NCAA spokesman Erik Christianson wrote in a statement to the AP, “but rather whether the substance is considered a threat to student-athlete health and safety or the integrity of the game.”

Former Texas A&M WR Thomas Johnson arrested on murder charge

Thomas Johnson
Associated Press

A very disturbing story has emerged out of Dallas, where former Texas A&M wide receiver Thomas Johnson sits in a Dallas County jail cell after allegedly admitting to hacking an unsuspecting jogger to death with a machete.

Just before 8 a.m. Monday, authorities say Johnson went to White Rock Creek Trail, a popular jogging trail in northeast Dallas, and randomly slashed a jogger to death. “It appears Mr. Johnson picked this victim at random. Absolutely random,” Deputy Chief Rob Sherwin told the Dallas Morning News. “He just attacked him. … It’s just very unusual. It’s quite shocking.”

Johnson then walked away from the scene in search of a cell phone. An onlooker had already dialed 911, and when police arrived Johnson allegedly told them there was a man “laying down with a sword in his head and not moving.”

“I just committed capital murder,” Johnson said and then repeated, according to his arrest affidavit. The only motive police reported was that Johnson was angry at his situation in life at the time of the slaying.

The victim, an unidentified male between the age of 25 and 35, passed away at a nearby hospital.

Johnson, meanwhile, remains in a Dallas County jail in lieu of $500,000 bail.

Johnson was a highly-regarded member of Kevin Sumlin‘s first recruiting class at Texas A&M. As a true freshman in 2012, the Dallas native caught 30 passes for 339 yards and one touchdown through the Aggies’ upset of then-No. 1 Alabama and then simply… disappeared. He went missing for three days in November 2012 before turning up back home in Dallas. His mother told the San Antonio Express-News last April Johnson would like to return to college football, but a return to the game never materialized.

No punishment from SEC for Bielema’s sideline interaction with Alabama player

Bret Bielema

Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema will not be disciplined by the SEC office for his brief interaction with Alabama offensive lineman Cam Robinson last weekend. A video showing Bielema exaggerating his interaction with Robinson at the end of a play was reviewed by SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, and the commissioner has discussed the situation with the Razorbacks coach.

“I visited with Bret over the phone on Monday and we discussed the play that has now become widely reviewed through a brief video clip,” Sankey said in a released statement. “Football is played in an intense competitive environment and I reminded him of the need for head coaches to resolve with their own players issues that may arise, which was his intent. The unsportsmanlike penalty assessed on the play was not directly associated with Bret’s efforts to intervene at the end of the play and we are moving forward in a positive manner.”

That appears to be the end of the discussion regarding Bielema’s act. I personally think there should have been some more done here by the league’s commissioner, but we will see if Bielema avoids putting himself in a similar position moving forward.