Pike's Side of Incident

Five-star quarterback Zeke Pike was ejected from Sunday's BadgerSport 7v7 and immediately, the Internet passed judgement, but was it warranted?

So Zeke Pike is a thug right? He threw a ball at an official and was ejected from this weekend's Badger Sport 7 on 7.

Almost immediately, blogs, message boards and Twitter feeds picked up on the incident, and Pike was labeled a "thug," and a player who has an attitude problem by people who were not even there to witness it.

I'm not here to defend what Pike did. I saw it first hand, and felt it warranted at least a penalty, if not the resulting ejection. However, I'm also here to put some perspective on what happened.

For those who were not there, let me also bring this to the forefront. A three-star prospect with many college interests cussed out his coach and stormed off the field using every four-letter word in the book. That wasn't publicized, and I'm not going to out that kid, but to me, what he did was worse. As usual, there was a lot of trash talk, a few punches thrown, things getting heated. None of that is right or sportsmanlike, but if we're going to jump on Zeke, then let's be fair across the board.

Pike gave Scout a statement on the incident yesterday:

"I want to first say nothing I did, in any way, was right of me. My actions weren't acceptable. What happened from my point of view: I knew it was a third down and our last chance to get a first down. I heard the ref counting down and I was hurrying to get the team set before a delay of game was called. Just short of getting the play off, the ref blew the play dead. In my perspective, I wasn't angry, but disappointed to lose our offensive possession. I threw the ball towards the ref who blew his whistle in no way to harm him, just thinking he'd spot the ball and waved his hands, so I threw it. At that point, the other ref assumed I threw it with intentions to hit him and threw me out of the game. What I did was wrong and wasn't acceptable, however, it was blown way out of proportion and the ref, after he ejected me apologized and said 'I shouldn't have tossed you. I overreacted as well,' so we both apologized. At that point, I felt it was better to let it go and support my team and that's what I did."

Again, I'm not saying Pike was right, and neither is he. The point I'm making is that athletes on every level misbehave. Professionals we idolize misbehave, so let's not jump on a 17-year old kid for a momentary lapse in judgment.

"I apologize to the fans who have heard this and I let down. My actions weren't acceptable, and I take responsibility. However, I can say that the Goon Squad will be back for revenge in Bama!"

This is one of those moments that Pike should learn from, and it sounds like he has. In the long run, it will hopefully make him better, both as a person and leader on the field.


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