Like many ex-NFL players, Terrell Owens is in the financial lifeboat. He's already been tossed overboard by teams, and now he's floating along in the sea of life, completely directionless.
ESPN reported yesterday that Owens is facing potential jail time in regards to being behind in child support payments. This is just another item on the "filing for bankruptcy" checklist that Owens is quickly completing.
February 2012: GQ magazine does a profile of Owens and his recent hardships. "I'm in Hell" is the tag.
May 2012: Owens goes on Dr. Phil and faces 3 of his baby mamas. He admits to squandering "his NFL fortune — anywhere from $80 to $100 million."
Unfortunately, it's not just Owens. The NFL, in my opinion, has a responsibility to the players to educate them as far as their finances are concerned. Just as the Roger Goodell sees his responsibility to do something about violent collisions, ie, concussions, he should also be concerned with the number of players that end of in financial straits once their playing days are over.
I would go as far as to see most of the kids coming into the NFL are coming from middle class or poor backgrounds. They've never had a lot of money, and are suddenly given a few million, in some cases, just for signing a piece of paper and handing over bank routing and account numbers. A good agent will make sure they receive some financial counseling and have a good financial adviser. But they don't live with them, and can't follow them around 24 hours a day.
And then there are the kids coming into the NFL. I would love to see the NFL, NBA, MLB, and colleges get together and prepare financial preparedness courses for kids still in college that have aspirations to play professional sports. Actually, everyone should, even those taking tourism and hospitality classes.
Terrell Owens is just one of many. Until Roger Goodell sees this as an issue though, the NFL will have mud on its face.