A little more than two years ago, both OU and OSU desperately sought the signature of Dorial Green-Beckham. The 6-foot-6 wide receiver from Springfield, Mo., was one of the nation’s top football recruits. OU was replacing Ryan Broyles; OSU was replacing Justin Blackmon. The most productive receivers in each school’s history.
Green-Beckham considered both Bedlam rivals, but he signed with homestate Missouri, another sign of the rising tide of Mizzou football.
Sometimes the best recruiting news is when the answer is no.
Green-Beckham was good and getting better in two Missouri seasons, but Friday, Green-Beckham was dismissed from the MU team. He had been suspended earlier in the week after after an 18-year-old Mizzou student told police Green-Beckham broke into her apartment at 2:30 a.m. Sunday while trying to see his girlfriend, a friend of the victim. The victim said she was pushed down at least four stairs. Later, the woman told police she didn’t want to press charges and showed police 16 text messages from Green-Beckham’s girlfriend, asking her not to press charges.
“This decision was made with the best interests of all involved in mind,” Missouri coach Gary Pinkel said in a statement. “Dorial’s priority going forward needs to be focusing on getting the help he needs. As we have all along, we will continue to do everything we can to assist Dorial and his family. We care deeply about Dorial and his well-being, but hopefully he can benefit from a fresh start.”
This was a very solid sign from Pinkel and Missouri. I have no idea if dismissal was Pinkel’s idea. At some point, university administration gets involved. At some places, the university president steps in and tells a coach, “Hey, I’ve got this.” Pushing a coed down stairs would seem to rise to such intervention.
As a freshman in 2012, Green-Beckham had 28 catches for 395 yards and five touchdowns. Last season, Green-Beckham had 59 catches for 883 yards and 12 TDs, including four catches for 53 yards in the Cotton Bowl victory over OSU.
As Missouri’s football fortunes rise in the SEC, pressure will mount to field an elite team. It’s not easy to dismiss great talent. But it’s the right thing to do when circumstances demand it. And these circumstances seem to demand it. Good to see Missouri keep its priorities straight.