On Thursday evening, Washington State gave linebacker Logan Tago its Community Involvement Award for the 2017 fall semester. They even sent out a press release about it.
Under normal circumstances, this would be:
1) A nice thing for Tago.
2) Not at all remarkable on our site.
Except these aren’t normal circumstances.
This story, as Deadspin pointed out, actually begins in Sept. 2016, when Tago was arrested after being accused of stealing a six-pack of beer from a man on a Pullman, Wash., street and striking the man in the head, leaving the man concussed.
Tago pleaded guilty to third-degree assault in order to avoid a felony robbery charge. Tago’s plea called for him to spend 30 days in jail… and perform 240 hours of community service.
He was suspended from the team at the time, but returned in 2017. He appeared in all 13 games this fall, recording one start, while collecting 24 tackles and three TFLs.
This isn’t to say that the arrest couldn’t have served as a wake-up call for Tago, that he isn’t a changed man, or that those 240 hours didn’t produce any good for the community. All of those things can be true. But it’s odd that Washington State didn’t acknowledge that Tago’s volunteer hours weren’t exactly voluntary.