Volume XLIX Issue I
BY SHREG GIANO: SPORTS EDITOR
Piscataway—Rutgers never has been and never will be a stranger to controversies and scandals. In the last year, the demise of Ray Rice’s spot as the Rutgers golden boy and the vulgar signs fans displayed at the Penn State football game brought heaps of negative press to the greater New Brunswick area.
While those issues brought their fair share of negative media attention, the bad press will pale in comparison to what Rutgers will soon face.
According to many reliable sources, the balls of the Rutgers Wrestling team failed inspection after their match with Ohio State on Sunday. Labeled “#InflateGate” by clever pundits, the balls of each wrestler were found to be inflated well above the NCAA mandate of “Decently-Strapped Black Man” levels of inflation.
The Medium caught up with star Redshirt freshman Anthony Ashnault, hoping to hear his side of the story. His answer was brief and frank, saying adamantly that “To my knowledge, nobody illegally inflated my balls. While I’ll admit that I like wrestling with my balls as large and inflated as possible, I would never defy the integrity of the sport by cheating and asking my trainer to over-inflate my balls.”
Wrestling legends have chimed in on the issue. The majority of them do not believe Ashnault, saying that “no trainer or ball boy would mess with a star wrestler’s balls without explicit direction to do so by the wrestler himself.”
On Tuesday, head coach Scott Goodale gave a fiery, defiant press conference in defense of his wrestlers, highlighting his team’s continued compliance with the NCAA’s investigation and also the painstaking effort they put in to follow all the rules.
“We brought our guys’ balls to the referee for a pre-match inspection a couple of hours before the first bout. They found our balls to be inflated to their liking, and said nothing about any problems with over inflation. Only once the Ohio State wrestlers complained that the balls of our guys were bigger and, frankly, nicer than usual did the NCAA and the media begin their witch hunt against Rutgers Wrestling. Maybe you guys should have the ball boy and equipment manager up here, because I have absolutely nothing to do with any of this.”
When reporters got confused as to why a wrestling team, which participates in a sport with no type of game ball, would need a ball boy, Goodale replied “Come on, you guys know! He’s got an ultra important job; He’s guy who takes care of everyone’s balls! Every decent team has one.”
Given that the NCAA treats cheaters very harshly, expect Rutgers to receive unrivaled sanctions in response to this scandal. In fact, the sanctions will be so serious that, perhaps, Tom Brady might just hesitate the next time he thinks about tinkering with the inflation of his balls. That is, if the NFL ever decides to discourage cheaters by actually punishing them when they are caught red-handed.