Thursday, July 29, 2010
But here's the thing with Masoli: there are always extenuating circumstances. Less than 48 hours after Oregon coach Chip Kelly kicked him off the team, Masoli is sitting in the living room of his parents' cramped row house in Daly City, Calif., a working-class suburb of San Francisco, trying to explain those circumstances. His hair, once a flowing mane, is trimmed short, befitting a young man eager to rebuild his image. The dual-threat quarterback who specialized in mystifying ball fakes is wrestling nervously with a throw pillow as he asks those who have judged him to look beyond his police record and consider his personal account of the events that led to his downfall -- an account that brings to light a number of previously unknown details, many of them backed up by police and court records, eyewitness accounts, and other sources.
Masoli admits that he lied about whether he was at the Sigma Alpha Epsilon house on Jan. 24, 2010. He lied to Kelly, to police, to his parents. He lied, he says, for reasons he hopes others will understand. He also admits to poor judgment. He is where he is today, "because I let all this happen. I put myself in some bad situations. That was the whole mistake." But he insists that he did not steal. His misdeeds took place in that wide area between black and white, between absolute guilt and innocence. He is asking you to see the gray.