Last week, we reported that ex-Nittany Lion Larry Johnson, Jr. was in a peck of trouble with the NFL Kansas City Chiefs for dissing his coach, insulting fans, and gay-bashing via Twitter. Johnson was told to stay away from team activities while his penance was being decided. Many speculated that this would be the end of Larry’s troublesome ride in Kansas City.
However, by week’s end, LJ’s agent had hammered out a deal with the Chiefs that would net Johnson what amounted to a paltry one-week suspension, after which he would remain with the team. On Monday, the settlement was announced. After losing a week’s pay, amounting to $315,000, and sitting out the November 8 game in Jacksonville, Larry will be back on active status.
This has pissed off many fans in Kansas City.
You see, LJ is only 75 yards from being the all-time leading rusher for the Chiefs, and a significant number of fans do not think that the pouting prima donna should hold such a lofty distinction in the Kansas City record book. In fact, they would prefer to expunge all memories of our Nittany embarrassment and let Priest Holmes hang onto the record until someone worthy (i.e., less of a damn troublemaker) comes along.
The petition states the following:
“While we are thankful for his service, we feel that Larry has been a black eye on the organization and has no business being mentioned among the team’s all-time greats.
“We are asking you, as fans of this team, this organization, and of the pride that this city has in the Chiefs, please deactivate Larry Johnson. Please do not let his name sit atop the all-time rushing leaders in Kansas City Chiefs history. He has never represented anything close to the values that we have for our Chiefs and it would be another dagger to the fans that continue to support this proud franchise.
“We are asking this as a favor to those of us who have supported this team long, long, long before you were brought in. We will support you through thick and thin — you will find out that we are a loyal, loyal bunch.
“However, allowing Larry Johnson to attain a record is something that can never be erased.”
As of this afternoon, over 1,400 signatures had been collected.
While LJ’s records at Penn State are certainly a point of pride for Nittany Nation, LJ himself is anything but. Most of us wonder how the son and the father can be such polar opposites in temperament and likability. We are Penn State proud to have a guy like LJ, Sr. associated with the program; we are irascibly sheepish about the mere mention of LJ, Jr.
One thing is for for damn sure. Larry Johnson could have been great for Penn State and for the NFL. The two-time Pro Bowler could have dispelled the widely held belief that Penn State running backs turn out to be NFL busts. Instead of negating that belief with his on-field performance, LJ’s nefarious off-field exploits serve to worsen the situation for future draftable Nittany Lions.
How many of us Nittany Lions fans join the people of Kansas City in the wish that LJ would just go away?