Ducks React to Colt Lyerla's Arrest
Let me start by saying I've always enjoyed talking with Colt Lyerla -- either in person off camera, in an interview or via Twitter. I've always thought, down deep, there's a sensitive and thoughtful kid inside that almost superhero body.
But there have always been problems -- not always of his making. He grew up under tough circumstances and probably had a lot tougher road than a good many of us. All that said, though, I think Colt's facing his biggest challenge at this point of his young life. He has to put those problems behind him and start anew.
Sitting in a jail cell in Eugene could be the low point of his life and the starting point of a fresh, new beginning, or it can be the first red flag that something even worse is ahead. And it's his choice. Not his mother's. Not his father's. Not his coaches'. Not the media. It's all on him.
From what I've heard, he's had a lot of people reach out to help him at various times. Coaches, from high school to college, have tried. So have teammates and classmates. But sometimes we're not ready to accept help or are too stubborn to admit we need it. Trust me, I know all about that.
And I think Colt Lyerla is at that point where he better get some help. And he better pull himself up off the floor and get himself right. He's been given athletic gifts rare enough to make him a wealthy man some day. He's been given some patient coaches and teammates willing to help and nurture him. And yet there he sits, in a jail cell with a drug rap hanging over his head. He isn't playing football and he's under pressure to prove himself not guilty of a charge that would affect his future earning power.
So where do you go from here, Colt Lyerla? Do you slide into the abyss or do you climb to new heights? There's help for you in a great many places -- including the court, which Thursday offered up a treatment program rather than a jail sentence -- but it all starts with you.
Will you do this? CAN you do this? Getting out of this charge is one thing but changing the course of your life is quite another. I fear if you don't learn from this episode, you will pay a much heavier price later.