Dolphins' Joe Philbin talks about Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin.
Don Shula is definitely old-school.
Now 83, Shula is a Hall of Fame coach who has been witness to the blood and the glory of the NFL for decades. He’s also been witness to the hazing that’s been at the forefront of the news in light of the Richie Incognito-Jonathan Martin controversy.
“Hazing has been going on forever,” Shula said during a visit to Central Florida earlier this week, when he was promoting the opening of “Shula Burger” in Kissimmee. “And it’s just unfortunate what this has led to. And I think the important thing is for the Dolphins to put this behind them and let them move on.”
Good luck with that.
In the latest twist, Incognito has filed a grievance against the Dolphins, challenging his "indefinite suspension."
As this controversy plays out, Shula recalled his days in the league as a coach and player, which includes a stint as an assistant coach with the Detroit Lions that began in 1960.
“One of the first things I had to do was get up on a chair during dinner and sing my high-school fight song,” Shula said. “Once I did it they never asked me to do again.
But doesn’t Incognito’s hazing go beyond the usual stuff?, I asked.
“I don’t know,” Shula said. “ I can’t answer that. I think it’s stuff that’s been going on and just got out of hand a little bit.”
More than a little bit.
Expect for the NFL to establish a hazing police in the near future. Incognito most definitely seems to have crossed the line, and was enabled by a team that gave him a position of power. It turned the Dolphins locker room into a racist Animal House.
Sadly this is no longer Don Shula’s NFL.