What Happened to Baby Cameron?
by: E Walk
(© 2009 by the Author)

The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's consent. Comments are appreciated at...

Chapter 29  

The News Broadcast


All of us were in Hank’s and my bedroom and there were bodies all over the floor, so we could all see what Hank wanted us to watch.


The show started and the male announcer started, “Ladies and gentlemen. We welcome you to this special broadcast of the ESPN Sport’s Center.  We will be examining what happened in the game between Carolina and Tech on Friday night, that caused one of the players to be tackled as if it were a football game.  The information was brought to our attention by Mr. Hank Rodgers, who comes from the Denver area.”


“The hosts for the show are our regular Sports Center reporters Alex Dawkins and Glenda Horvath.  They will be introducing you to the other participants.  Alex, you’re on.”


“Thank you, Dieter.   As Dieter mentioned, Glenda and I will be moderating this broadcast tonight.  We’re coming to you live from Raleigh, North Carolina.  In addition to Mr. Rodgers, we have noted basketball analysts, Bobby Day and Dick Vitamin.  They will be giving us their analysis of what we’re about to see.  Glenda over to you.”


“Thank you Alex.  In addition to the guests that Alex mentioned, we have the two young men who were involved in the Friday night incident, Mr. Jacob Michaels and Mr. Bart Lester.  Sitting in the audience are the officiating crew and the coaching staffs of the two schools involved, as well as personnel from the Conference Commissioner’s Office to include the head of the officiating committee.”


Ms Horvath looked at Hank, “Mr. Rodgers, how is it that you're involved in this unfortunate incident?”


Hank nodded, “Thank you Ms Horvath.  Mr. Michaels called me yesterday morning and asked for my help.  He felt that Mr. Lester was being treated unjustly.  Not only was Mr. Lester’s scholarship going to be revoked, but the university was threatening to expel him from school.”


“Another thing that bothered me was that fact that the officials were trying to get Mr. Michaels to file formal charges against Mr. Lester.  That in itself was enough to raise a red flag in front on me.  Before we continue, I suggest we examine the tape of the game to show you why I’m even more sure than ever, that there was a conspiracy to discredit Mr. Lester and make sure that Tech lost the game.”


The tape of the game started and then Hank had tape of the first three fouls that Mr. Lester had supposedly committed, rerun.  Mr. Day interrupted, “This has to be the worst officiating that I have ever witnessed, and I have witnessed far too many poorly officiated games.  So far, they’ve called three fouls on Mr. Lester and they are all totally unjustified.”


Mr. Vitamin took over, “While Bobby and I don’t often agree, in this case, I agree with him completely.   I think the officiating up to this point in the game has been atrocious.  It appears to me as if the officiating crew was definitely trying to eliminate Mr. Lester from the game.  Mr. Reagan, what have you to say in defense of your officiating crew, based on what you’ve seen.”


A gentleman in a suit approached the microphone; Mr. Reagan who was head of the league officials responded “This is top rated officiating crew in the conference.  I can’t make a judgment on the basis of what I've seen so far.”


Hank interrupted, “Mr. Reagan, if this is the top rated officiating crew that you have in this conference, then I sure wouldn’t want any of your other crews officiating a game that I had people involved in.”


Hank turned to the two moderators, “Mr. Dawkins and Ms Horvath, I would like to bring out a witness who has requested anonymity for reasons that I will not discuss.  We’ll refer to him as Mr. X.”


Mr. Dawkins looked to the side and must have gotten a go ahead signal, “Please have Mr. X. join us.”


Hank left and returned with a person who was wearing a mask and witches costume.  Hank put a microphone on the person and started, “Mr. X., would you please tell the assembled people what you witnessed on Friday night.”


Something had been done to alter the voice so that it sounded very scratchy when the person spoke, “Yes sir, I was standing outside the arena waiting for my ride when a limousine pulled up.  When the three referees exited the arena, a man stepped out of the limo and handed each of the three referees an envelope.  I heard him say, “Job well done, that should eliminate Lester from any consideration as the ACC player of the year.  It’s even sweeter that we were able to take Michaels out of the running, as well.”


One of the referees jumped up, “This is a bunch of lies.  You have no proof of what this imposter is saying.”


“Excuse me, sir.  I’m a lawyer and I wouldn’t bring this information to the public’s attention without some proof.  Please show the pictures that Mr. X. took of the exchange.”


The two pictures were shown of the exchange of the envelope that showed the faces of the three referees and the face of the gentlemen who handed the envelopes to the three men. 


Mr. Vitamin fell back in his chair, “Oh my Gawd, that's the Commissioner of the ACC, Mr. Esterbrook.  Why would he be involved in the game to this extent?”


Hank answered, “Mr. Vitamin, there’s more.  But first I want to advise the present that I will be seeing most of the people in the audience, in court, as soon as I can file the briefs.”


 “Mr. X. perhaps you can shed some more light on what happened on Friday night.”


The person took his costume off and a good looking black man nodded, “Coach Harvey was all over Bart, after he fouled out, calling him every name in the book.  Now that I know what transpired, I think he was deliberately trying to goad Bart into doing something rash.  I tried to get him to back off, and he told me to mind my f______ business and fired my ass.”


Hank looked at the man, “Mr. Goodwin, what did you mean by that last statement?”


“Mr. Rodgers, Coach Winters is the son-in-law of Commissioner Esterbrook.  It was obviously more important that the Commissioner’s wonderful grandson be recognized, than for Tech to make it to the Big Dance.  The grandson goes to State, but how he has been able to stay in school is beyond me.  The other problem is that one of the assistant coaches for Carolina is the Commissioner’s son.  He’s been waiting in the wings to take over from Coach Brown when he retires.”


Hank looked at Mr. Goodwin, “Thank you, Ted.”


Mr. Day looked at the host and hostess, “You didn’t warn us that this was going to happen.”


Ms Horvath answered, “We didn’t know.  I have some questions for the two young men who were involved in the incident.  Mr. Michaels, what are you going to do after you graduate?  Do you plan to pursue a career in professional basketball?”


Jacob smiled, “First, ma’am.  I already have my BA degree.  I graduated in December, even though I’m in my senior year.  I’m taking graduate courses this semester.  After this fiasco, I doubt very much if I would be even be considered for the NBA.  If the NBA is as corrupt as intercollegiate athletics has become, then there is no way that I want to be a part of it.”


Both Mr. Day and Mr. Vitamin sucked air on that comment.


Mr. Dawkins turned to Bart, “Mr. Lester, what are you going to do if you do indeed lose your scholarship which it appears you will, and rightly so?  You should not have allowed yourself into being goaded into attacking someone.”


Mr. Goodwin jumped on Mr. Dawkins‘ comment, “Your job is to objectively report the news and not interject your personal thoughts.”


Mr. Dawkins nodded, “I stand corrected.”


Bart answered, “If I’m not expelled, Mr. Rodgers has offered me a scholarship, so I can finish my undergraduate career at Tech.  If I am expelled, he has offered to pay for me to finish my degree at any college that he finds acceptable.”


Mr. Day looked at Hank, “Mr. Rodgers, why would you offer to do that?”


Hank grinned, “Because the young man has a 3.9 grade point average.  I figure that anyone with the fortitude to maintain an average like that, and play basketball, is worth keeping around.  Jake, what was your GPA when you graduated?”


Jacob laughed, “Heck, Bart has me beat.  I only had a 3.75.”


Ms Horvath asked, “Mr. Michaels, you seem to know Mr. Rodgers quite well.”


Jake nodded, “Mr. Rodgers and my father are good friends and have been for a number of years.  We’ve been to Mr. Rodgers’ houses a number of times.  That’s why I called him and asked him to come and help Bart.”


Mr. Dawkins looked at Hank, “Sir, do you have any other comments you would like to make before we close?”


“Thank you, Mr. Dawkins. I want to thank ESPN for airing this program tonight.  We have just opened the tip of iceberg as to what is happening in intercollegiate athletics today.  It's time that the governments get involved and force the colleges to focus on academics instead of athletics.  I think it is time for colleges to stop paying money to athletes who they know are not able to meet the minimum standards to graduate.”


“I also realize that the biggest dilemma that the colleges and universities have to face is the overzealous alumni who want to see their alma mater’s name up on the marquee.”


Ms Horvath spoke up, “Mr. Rodgers, I have two questions.  First, how do you know so much about refereeing, and second, where do you practice law?”


Hank grinned, “In answer to your first question, after I received my law degree, I went to officiating school and worked as an official not only in basketball but football and baseball.  I worked primarily at the high school level, but did some work at the college level as well.  When I was diagnosed with cancer, I gave it up.” 


“In answer to your second question, I don’t have a law practice.  I write computer games when I have time.  I’m certified to practice law in all fifty states, so I can take care of any legal problems that might arise for my gaming company.  My game writing time has been restricted by my six year old son and his friends.”


Ms Horvath nodded, “So, you’re married?”


“Ms Horvath, I was married, and I received custody of my son.”


Mr. Dawkins asked, “Mr. Day, do you have any comments before we close?”


Mr. Day hesitated, “This is why I’m an analyst.  The politics in the collegiate sports are out of control.  I realize that money is the driving force, but it’s a sad day when a coach and his assistants make more than the President of a University and the instructional faculty.  It’s time for the universities and colleges to draw in the reigns.”


Mr. Vitamin nodded his head, “I agree with Mr. Day and Mr. Rodgers.  It’s time for the public to stop supporting the outrageous salaries that athletes and coaches are making today.  If we stop going to see the games, then the owners and colleges will have to stop caving in to player and alumni demands.”


Dieter came on, “Ladies and gentlemen, that concludes the time for this special edition of Sports Center.  We apologize that many of you viewers have had to wait to make your comments.  We have added two numbers which are listed at the bottom of the screen where you can call to voice your opinions of this show.  Thank you for watching and have a good night.”


I looked at the guys who were watching, I looked at Chad, “You guys need to be going, if you’re going to be home on time.”


Damon responded, “I called Dad Wayne and he knows what we were doing and said it was okay if we were a little late.  We’ll help you carry your sleeping beauties to bed before we leave.” 


All of the young guys except Cam were asleep, and he came and sat down on my lap.  “Dad, I didn’t understand everything that they were talking about tonight.  Are Jacob and that other basketball player going to be okay?”


I hugged Cam, “Son, I’m sure that your Daddy will make sure that they’re okay.  I suggest you get ready for bed.  It’s a good thing you went swimming today, otherwise you would smell tomorrow.  Don’t forget we have a doctor’s appointment in the morning.”


I walked with Cam to his bedroom, Chad looked at me, “Mr. Michaels, we got everyone to go to the bathroom except Andy and we couldn’t get him awake enough to go.”


Cam looked at me, “Dad, carry Andy to the bathroom and I'll get him to go.  You’re going to have to hold his penis.”


I carried Andy to the bathroom and Cam was standing at the commode, “Dad pull his briefs down and when I start to pee hold his penis over the commode and he’ll go to the bathroom, too.”


I did as I was directed and sure enough, it worked.  I walked the three visitors to the door and told Chad and Colby that I would have to talk to them another time.


I made sure the house was secure, after I saw Chad’s car pull away. 


I took a quick shower since I hadn’t been swimming and was lying on the bed thinking about what had happened on the show.  I kept wondering what might happen as a result of the show.  I turned on the television and it was still turned to ESPN.


The person was saying, “This is the late Sports News.  The response to the special show that we aired earlier tonight on what happened at Chapel Hill on Friday night has been so great that we will be showing it again at midnight tonight and at one o’clock tomorrow afternoon.  Callers have overwhelmingly been reiterating that it is time to pull in the reigns on the money being spent on sports when so many people are without jobs.”

“This is an editorial comment that has been approved by the hierarchy of the network.  It will be interesting to see what the do nothing Congress will make of this mess.  I can see it now, the two parties will be split down party lines and nothing will get done again.”


I turned the television off and was getting to turn the light off when the phone rang.  “This is Steve Michaels.”


“Steve, I’m sorry to call so late.  I took Jake, Gisele and Bart to dinner.  Did you get a chance to watch the show?”


“We had a gallery of ten of us watching the show.  Cam was the only one of the young guys who made it through the show.  He’s concerned about what’s going to happen to Jacob and Bart.”


“Jacob will be fine, and hopefully Bart will be, too, now that the truth is out.  If the ACC is this corrupt, who's to say what the other conferences are hiding.   It would be interesting if the government were to form an oversight committee for college athletics.  Steve, I’m exhausted.  I need to get some sleep. I’m flying back to New Orleans in the morning.  Talk to you tomorrow night.” 


To be continued...


 Editor's Notes:  Well, it looks as if Hank did come to the rescue.  It also seems that he is going back to help Grandpa T get things together. 


I still kinda feel sorry for Alan, and hope he can get his head straightened around.  He does seem pretty self centered and not particularly interested in anyone but himself.  Sadly, it seems to me that there are a lot of people like that. They are not fundamentally bad people. They just have all their priorities all screwed up. 


I will be very happy when the next chapter comes along.


Darryl AKA The Radio Rancher



Posted: 03/19/10