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Bits & Pieces

Bits & Pieces: Conference jumping is latest effect of big money on college athletics

Also, Howard alum Parrish makes his hometown proud

By Stan Ber, howardcountysports@patuxent.com

December 5, 2012

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I wonder if Maryland's latest athletic recruits knew that their new school would be changing conferences? I cannot understand all this jumping. The University of Maryland will now go to the Big Ten which will probably become the Big 20 by next month, while the Big East and the Atlantic Coast Conference will be left to die. Maryland, in my opinion, will not be successful in the Big Ten except in terms of monetary gain. And the $50 million that the school has to cough up to leave the ACC might have been enough to sustain the programs that they cut earlier this year.

It has become more obvious that money makes the world of college sports go round. Show me the money and I will jump to wherever those funds take me. What a shame. The athletes aren't even part of the equation anymore.

Parrish does Columbia proud

Nothing pleases me more than watching a former Howard County great go on to give back to Maryland high school athletics. Anyone who has met DaLawn Parrish is immediately taken in by his smile and his intelligence.

After an incredible football career at Howard High, where he was named Player of the Year in 1994, DaLawn went on to star at Wake Forest. He later joined the coaching staff at Wilde Lake before ending up at Wise High School in Upper Marlboro. Initially, Wise, which opened in 2006 was not a football powerhouse. But last Friday night, head coach Parrish and his Pumas defeated Quince Orchard, 12-7, for the Class 4A state championship.

Even more impressive, Parrish remembered his hometown on the night he led Wise to its first ever football state title.

"Columbia changed my life. When we moved out there in tenth grade, it was an awesome experience. The people there care about me and I care about them," Parrish told sports reporter Andrew Conrad. "I'm happy for coach Van Deusen ... he's obviously continued the dominance that Wilde Lake started in Howard County and it's a beautiful thing to see that because there are a lot of great people here that care about kids and community is big."

As the Crowie flies

I attend many of the triathlons run by TriColumbia and I continue to be amazed at that sport's growing popularity. I know that the Ironman in Hawaii is the pinnacle of the sport and I have watched segments on television of the tortuous route that champions endure.

Australian Craig "Crowie" Alexander, a five-time Ironman and the oldest triathlete to win the Hawaiian Ironman, will be here at Princeton Sports on Saturday, Dec. 8, from 5 to 9 p.m. to promote his new book.

Here's an opportunity to meet a legend and chat with a man who knows how dedication and work ethic pays off in sports and in life.

Jets miss out on Maybin

I have not seen any indication that former Mt. Hebron football star Aaron Maybin has been picked up by any team since the New York Jets cut him on Nov. 13 for not putting up numbers. But doesn't that describe the entire Jets team? Maybin, just 24 years old, was drafted in the first round by the Buffalo Bills in 2009 and was released by the Jets with just one tackle, no sacks and nine quarterback hits.

I saw Aaron play for the Bills and I felt that he had an NFL future. With the right team and the right coach, there could still be a future for him in the NFL. I still believe that if he gets on the right team, we will see the former Mt. Hebron and Penn State star emerge.