James Ferentz: A Harsh Penalty That Had to Be Doled Out

University of Iowa freshman center James Ferentz was cited at 1:26 a.m. Friday for Possession of Alcohol Under the Legal Age as part of a traffic stop in University Heights.

That isn’t drunk driving, it isn’t having an open container, it isn’t public intoxication. But it is what it is, as everyone says these days. It’s alcohol under the legal age, it was at 1:26 a.m., and it was in University Heights. That’s a place where you get pulled over for using too much of their oxygen.

I kid University Heights. I love University Heights.

This is nothing to joke about, of course. The law is the law, and bless University Heights’ heart for enforcing it.

Kirk Ferentz, James’ father and the Iowa head football coach, surely didn’t smile from his wake-up call Friday morning up to the time he rested his head on a pillow in a Cedar Rapids hotel room Friday night.

Not only is any Hawkeye player set up for stern punishment with each legal fumble because of the team’s rash of arrests for incidents extremely serious and less so, but it’s his son. Of all the players in the Iowa program, James Ferentz is the one who should have been most cautious at all times in all situations. College kids will be college kids, absolutely. I’m not going to be the one to throw stones in that regard. It’s a been-there, done-that, happy-to-have-survived thing.

But you’re on full scholarship in full view with your father under such a bright and often harsh spotlight, so your end of the bargain had better be to act as a model citizen and serious student for five years. Otherwise, you should have found a program where you could have blended into the furniture a lot easier.

So, Father/Coach Ferentz had no choice but to offer this Friday:

“I was extremely disappointed to learn of James’ very poor decision making on several levels. This offense will be treated seriously and his punishment will include immediate and total suspension from all team activities. In addition, he will be required to attend counseling sessions and fulfill substantial community service obligations over the next six weekends. I realize this is a severe penalty but it’s just given our current circumstances. The fact that James is also my son only complicates an already tough situation.”

James Ferentz had a choice. Because of the one James made, Kirk had no choice in doing what he did. Both will suffer for it, a lot. If you’re a parent, you surely sympathize. If you’re a student, take heed.


7 responses to “James Ferentz: A Harsh Penalty That Had to Be Doled Out

  1. Hey Mike!

    That last paragraph, no, the last line. Brilliant!
    If only…

  2. I can not imagine the churning that went on in Kirk’s stomach when he heard of this and the pain in his heart when he had to deal out the puishment. A child has enormous powers to hurt their parents, even if that wasn’t their intent. On the other hand I don’t want to hear that James is only a college student, doing what college students do. He deserves what his father dished out.

  3. You have it right. College kids make bad choices every day regardless of who their parents are. And this parent was backed into a corner and made the only choice available to him.

  4. This is hilarious!!!! I’m cracking the freak up. This is ridiculous. A player gets arrested last month for public intoxication and gets talked about so bad, but the COACH’S SON get caught with a DUI and everyone wants to feel his pain and pat the boy on his head and say he’s being a college student. When a black player get‘s caught intoxicated, he should know better, but a white student/coach’s son, we should pity him or be more understanding. BULL CRAP! He should be kicked off the team. He should know better.

  5. Most Wanted-
    You think he should be kicked off the team because he received a PAULA? Or is it because he is Ferentz’s son? Seems to me that you are doling out punishments in the same manner you chastized in your post. There is no way he should be kicked off the team for having a can of beer in the car he was riding in…that’s absurd.

  6. Pingback: Don’t You Know Who My Father Is? « Channel 25

  7. Pingback: James Ferentz among three Hawkeyes arrested « On Iowa

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