A Second Chance
Posted By: Troy Westwood firstname.lastname@example.org • 9/17/2010 9:11:00 AM
At some point of time, most everyone deserves a second chance. I don’t believe everyone deserves a second chance, but most often a second chance seems the fair thing to do. Enter Eric Tillman. For those who do not know the story, Eric Tillman plead guilty to sexual misconduct for an act he committed while he was the General Manager of the Saskatchewan Roughriders against his 16 year old female babysitter. For his guilty plea his was granted an absolute discharge with no criminal record. Soon after he pleaded guilty the girl and her family granted him forgiveness.
A couple of days ago the Edmonton Eskimos, who as an organization are desperate for wins, decided to hire Tillman as their new General Manager. When I heard Eric Tillman had been hired it made me a little sad. I know he needs to make a living, and I know in time he likely should have a second chance, it just seems to me that not enough time has passed here.
An aspect of this story that really, really bothers me is that Tillman to this day, still contributes some portion of his actions to the fact that he was somehow influenced by painkillers he had taken. It makes me sick that Tillman makes such a claim. As a player in the CFL for 17 years there were several times I had to take a fair amount of painkillers for extended periods of time to help allow me to practice and play. Not once was I ever induced to do something out of character.
Eric Tillman needs to take full responsibility for what he did. His claim as to the affect the painkillers had on his actions is a bunch of BS, and he needs to stop using it as a crutch in helping defend his poor judgment.
Edmonton’s decision to hire Tillman highlights the golden rule in professional sport. Win. Winning is all that matters in professional sport, and when an organization is desperate to win, it might make decisions that it wouldn’t otherwise consider. I guarantee some fairly interesting conversations occurred behind closed doors in Edmonton debating the amount of time that had passed since Tillman’s guilty plea and the need for the team to turn things around.
In professional sport everything finishes second to winning, even social responsibility.
Troy Westwood – Little Hawk
Troy Westwood is known for many things and in no specific order, some of his accomplishments include a 17 year professional football career with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, in which he amassed an amazing total of 30 career team records and is the all-time leader in Blue Bomber scoring. Troy retired as the leader in playoff field goal percentage in CFL history.
He is currently working as a Case Manager at Family Connections, a family reunification program in Winnipeg along with his weekday morning role as Co-Host of the QX104’s Waking Crew.
Troy remains active in the community as a Board Member of Nova House, a women’s shelter and place of safety in Selkirk as well as serving on the Board of the Manitoba Children’s Museum.