Leonard Fournette, LSU teammate worth too much money to be slapboxing

A quick Twitter search of Leonard Fournette and Garrett Brumfield’s names Wednesday included plenty of enticing terms attached to a TMZ video of the LSU football players squaring off in a parking lot. Media outlets used everything from “street fight” to “haymakers” to “slapboxing” and “horseplay,” which is how a spokesperson for LSU described it (of course, he would.)

You can watch the video and decide for yourself what to think.

Both guys appear a little too composed for it to be an all-out brawl, reminiscent of the early days of the late, great Kimbo Slice’s career in South Florida, but regardless of whether it was a silly game of slapboxing or something more sinister, it was certainly stupid.

College football players are grown men, if not mentally, then definitely physically, and should be treated as such. Contrary to diehard fans who find their identity in their fandom and whose happiness is wrapped up in the decisions these fellas make on National Signing Day and how well they play on Saturdays in the fall, they don’t need older adults to hold their hands through life. They also don’t need us to stick up for them whenever they’re criticized. Remember Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy’s ridiculous “I’m-a-man” rant back in the day?

Fournette is a Heisman-hopeful running back and a lock to be a first-round pick in next year’s NFL Draft.  The 6-3, 305-pound Brumfield, who was rated the nation’s top guard by ESPN when he came out of high school in 2013, has similar aspirations. Slapboxing is a rite of passage in some circles, but both have to realize that engaging in such activity is far too risky given what is at stake.

LSU’s athletic department made a profit of nearly $17 million last season, according to Cheat Sheet.

This isn’t only about LSU’s bottom line, but how a freak injury could impact their future earning potential. Former Ohio State star Ezekiel Elliott, the first rurnning back taken in the 2016 NFL Draft, inked a four-year $24.9 million contract, including a $16.9 million signing bonus. That could be Fournette.  Granted, the New Orleans native seems to have Floyd Mayweather-level defense the way he evaded blows in the clip, but all it takes is for one mishap to do irreprable damage to an eye socket. What if someone’s foot would’ve gotten lodged under someone else’s, causing a sprained ankle or worse? Athletes have gotten injured doing all types of stuff.

LSU coaches would definitely want them to chill out and find a more constructive way to test each other’s manhood and mettle. Tigers coach Les Miles was on the hot seat last season. He doesn’t need either of these guys missing time due to some good-natured rough-housing gone wrong.

Leonard Fournette LSU

No one was hurt and at least one NFL exec said the ordeal won’t adversely impact Fournette’s draft status. They’ve probably already received whatever words of warning or slap on the wrist they might get from LSU coaches.  That’s about all that should’ve happened.

Let’s not blow this out of proportion, and let’s hope Fournette and Brumfield keep their futures in perspective. They’re worth too much money not to.

Source: MSN Sports

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