This must be great journalism day. Here's Shaun Assael and Peter Keating profiling Marvin Harrison, who will show you how to do this son:
On the rare occasions when Harrison offers a private thought to the public, he quickly clams up. He once told a Philadelphia Inquirer reporter that he loved Anita Baker--then refused to divulge his favorite song. When asked to comment for this story, he declined, as did the rest of the Colts organization. ("We're going to honor Marvin's wishes," said a spokesman.) And when Harrison made his 1,102nd career catch, on Dec. 28, moving him into second place on the all-time list, the wideout simply trotted to the sideline, ball under his arm. During an ovation from 66,721 fans, he sat alone at one end of the bench. He accepted a hug from head coach Tony Dungy but said nothing--then or after the game...
After news broke of the shooting in Philly, it was easy to believe Harrison when he said he had nothing to do with it. It was hard to imagine No. 88 shooting at a man, even harder than it would have been to imagine him beating up an autograph hound or ball boy. While fans, reporters and New York's mayor pilloried Plaxico Burress for going into a nightclub with an unlicensed gun, Harrison continued to hide in plain sight, saying nothing, letting us view him as we wanted.
Turns out, Harrison also knows his way around guns. After a tipster called cops on April 30 to say "You should be looking at Marvin Harrison for that shooting on West Thompson Street," police matched five shell casings found at the scene with a model of gun registered to Harrison: a Belgian-made semiautomatic pistol that fires bullets that pierce 48 layers of Kevlar. This is military-grade bling, favored by connoisseurs because it is easily concealed.
When police paid a follow-up visit to Chuckie's, they found Harrison sitting in a beach chair near a cardboard cutout of himself in a Colts uniform. They asked if there were any guns on the premises, and to their surprise Harrison lifted the leg of his jeans to reveal a registered .22-caliber handgun strapped to his ankle. Soon after, a man whom Harrison called his stepfather handed over the Belgian pistol, fully loaded.
I have two thoughts after reading this piece--the first more defensible than the second.
1.) As we discussed in regard to Dungy, I think people confuse the morals of players on the field with how they conduct their lives, and vice-versa. Michael Irvin became the poster-boy for a certain type of athlete in the 90s--big talking, undeserving, glamour boys. Surely in his personal life, Mikel was straight ignorant. But on the feild, he outworked everyone. Circa 2001 (now now) it was the same with Ray Lewis. When all the murder trial stuff was swirling around him, a lot of folks let that bleed over into judging him on the feild. But, with a few exceptions, (Ronnie Lott, Walter Payton etc.) I don't know if I've ever seen a more intense, never say die player than Ray Lewis.
2.) This is so wrong. But I'm filled with a silly, childish admiration for Harrison. I'm just a sucker for cats who don't talk, who just go about their business--even criminals.
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