In an age when crime and corruption have infiltrated collegiate athletics on all levels, a new scandal has cast a shadow over one sport’s national championship tournament.
The nation’s top-ranked squash player voluntarily has withdrawn from next week’s national singles championship after his despicable sportsmanship tainted the team championship match Sunday.
Baset Chaudhry, a senior on the Trinity side that just captured its 12th straight title, went overboard in celebrating after he clinched the title with a victory over Yale’s Kenneth Chan.
After winning a tense and contentious match, Chaudhry leaned into Chan’s face and screamed as the freshman exited the court.
The executive directors of the College Squash Association had a conference call early in the week to attempt to determine a course of action, but Chaudhry decided to remedy the situation by withdrawing from the singles tournament.
Trinity has won 224 straight matches, but that success comes with a price. It has to be questioned whether the program is sacrificing character for success on the court.
■ MAN OF PRINCIPLE — Republican Sen. Jim Bunning of Kentucky was not happy with his Democratic counterparts Thursday.
He launched a one-man campaign and managed to block legislation aimed to extend unemployment benefits and health insurance to 1 million jobless Americans, but it came at a great personal cost.
According to the Louisville (Ky.) Courier-Journal, Bunning accused the Democrats of attempting to “ambush” him by repeatedly trying to move the bill. He also complained that the process was causing him to miss Kentucky’s basketball game against South Carolina.
It’s unclear whether Bunning was just trying to block unemployment benefits as a way to further stick it to former Wildcats coach Billy Gillispie.
■ DOUBLE STANDARD? — Tony Kornheiser was suspended this week from “Pardon the Interruption” for criticizing the wardrobe of ESPN anchor Hannah Storm.
Speculation swirled in the blogosphere as to whether the punishment would have been the same had Kornheiser insulted the attire of one of the male anchors.
The answer apparently is no.
According to Dave Miller of The National Football Post, critiquing the outfits of TV personalities is a habit of Kornheiser. Miller provided this example of a Dec. 17 rant from Kornheiser’s podcast on a white suit worn by ESPN NBA analyst Avery Johnson:
“This is why he’s not coaching in the league: because he has no fashion sense. … It is the middle of December. You cannot wear a white suit in Bristol, Conn.,” Kornheiser said. “You look like a fool. And any owner out there He looks ridiculous, and he’ll never get a job in the NBA like that.”
There is a bit of a caveat.
After his critique of Storm’s outfit, he referred to her as a “Holden Caulfield fantasy.” While the “Catcher in the Rye” reference possibly was lost on the average ESPN viewer, it could be interpreted as saying Storm looked like a prostitute.
We can be thankful it wasn’t Avery Johnson who was described in that manner.
COMPILED BY ADAM HILL
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL