James Leroy Wilson's one-man magazine.

Friday, December 16, 2016

#Wakeyleaks: Doing the right thing is prudent

Imagine you're a football coach at the major college level or higher. Someone gives you the playbook of your upcoming opponent. As anyone who follows football knows, having access to the opponent's playbook would give you a strategic advantage in the game.

You ask, "Where did you get it?"

The answer, "Doesn't matter, does it. Don't you want it?"

Why wouldn't you want it?

I know why I wouldn't want it and wouldn't use it. My first thought would be, "Gamblers are trying to fix the game. I don't know who these gamblers are or who they work for. This smells like trouble."

I'd immediately report the incident to my superior, name names as I know them, and hand over the playbook. Then I'd let my superiors handle it from there on, and cooperate with any official investigation.

Something similar has indeed happened. A broadcaster with insider access to Wake Forest football offered confidential play information to at least a couple opposing schools, for as if yet undetermined motives. One assistant coach (at Louisville) received the information but wasn't forthcoming about it and has been suspended.

Is it honorable, a sign of integrity, to refuse to use the playbook and reveal the information? Probably, but that to me isn't the reason come forward. The real reason is self-interest. Access to the opponent's playbook smells like trouble, just like buying Air Jordans out of the trunk of a car for $20 smells like trouble. Even if you don't know precisely how the Air Jordans would be available at such a huge discount, the wise thing to do is to not buy the shoes, and get away from that car as quickly as you can.

Don't get entangled with what looks like trouble. Protect yourself the best you can.

Even if you don't have a sense of honor or ethics, prudence can drive one to do the right thing.


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