Monday, May 3, 2010

George Huguely arrested for murder; fellow Wahoo is the victim

I had a post going that was recapping the weekend. It doesn't matter any more.

UVA lacrosse player dead, another in custody.

It's the kind of thing that sends an electric shock through your heart, and not in a good way. Yeardley Love was a senior on the women's lacrosse team; George Huguely plays on the second midfield unit for the men's team. The latter was reportedly the former's boyfriend, and now, her alleged murderer.

Unbelievable. What happens to the rest of the season for both teams is totally unknown, and right now, unimportant. More important now is the Love family, to which all sympathies are extended, and the facts of the case. But - and not to turn this into the Duke case - when an arrest is made that quickly, "alleged" becomes, unfortunately, more of a constitutional formality than anything.

Update: the press conference about the case, predictably, sounds as if it was almost totally devoid of useful information. That's because when you put out useful information to the press, defense attorneys have a field day. We'll probably just have to put up with a few days of worrying and wondering and two-paragraph news stories putting UVA lacrosse in the front pages of news publications that would never mention lacrosse unless a police blotter was involved.

Update 2: It's still not the important thing, but I think it's the one thing that's never going to leave the back of everyone's mind: Will the season be canceled? At this point, I believe, yes, it's inevitable. It may even be that the school and/or team has already made that call. I don't know. What I do know is that the parallels to the Duke case are totally unavoidable at this point:

- A member of the team has been charged with a major and sensationalistic felony.
- The news organizations - and at this point, you're not just talking about the CDP, you're talking about ESPN and CNN - want to have the attention involved with reporting it, but aren't going to give it more time than it takes to say "A member of the UVA lacrosse team is charged with murder," much like they wanted to make sure the word "rape" was mentioned in every Duke story.

Emotions are too high for the principally affected in this case to break it down any further than that. I don't care how many differences you want to point out, the larger story doesn't have time to calmly and coolly analyze the situation from an objective angle. The only difference that matters here is that everyone on both teams knew the victim - that only makes it worse. And in this case, the victim isn't lying. I'll be operating under the assumption that there won't be any more lacrosse played at UVA this season, and I selfishly hope I'm very, very wrong. It's not up to me to decide, and let's be clear - it shouldn't be entirely up to the admin either. And I think what you'll see is the men follow the women's lead.


Anonymous said...

Don't know whether Huguely is guilty or not. But let me quote a poster from another forum:

My $0.02. People kill each other every day for all sorts of reasons, and usually the victim and perp know each other. It has been so since the dawn of mankind and will be so for ever more.

The fact they were lacrosse players had nothing to do with it.

Tolstoy said...

How many violent crime news stories do you read regarding athletes from other varsity sports??? Lacrosse a coincidence??? I think not.

Brendan said...

Come on, Tolstoy. If you haven't seen any stories of violent crime involving basketball players, football players, hockey players, etc. then you haven't paid any attention. There's a violent segment of the society and by purely statistics alone you'd expect some of those people to play sports of some kind. The Duke case was four years ago; a simple Google search would give you all kinds of examples from other sports since then, which nobody allows to cast aspersions on the sports themselves or the athletes playing them.

Anonymous said...

Tolstoy, by that logic, in a couple of years, about half the PGA should be divorced.