Home' The River Weekly News : RWN 091115 Contents THE RIVER - SEPTEMBER 11, 2015
Goodell, NFL Smacked Down By
The Courts For The Fifth Straight Time
by Ed Frank
Serena Williams vie for a record-breaking tennis grand
slam; Tim Tebow’s failure to land a comeback job with
the Philadelphia Eagles; Tom Brady’s legal victory over
the National Football League in the so-called “deflate gate.”
These were three top sports stories of the week, but let’s
examine in some detail the complicated legalize of the Brady
affair that once again brought embarrassment to the NFL just as
the 2015 season was about to begin.
A federal judge wiped out the four-game suspension of Brady
in a stinging, 40-page rebuke of the NFL and Commissioner
Roger Goodell. It was Goodell who acted as both prosecutor and
arbitrator against Brady for his alleged role in the football-deflating scheme.
Brady had insisted he played no role in any decision to deflate footballs below
the allowable limit in last season’s AFC championship game between Brady’s New
England Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts.
We all know how difficult it often is to decipher the legalize of a court opinion. And
U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman’s ruling certainly lived up to that dilemma.
But wading through his opinion, he said Goodell’s handling of the case was “funda-
mentally unfair” and counter to collective bargaining provisions.
Although the judge didn’t actually rule whether Brady participated in the “deflate
gate” scandal, instead he threw out the quarterback’s suspension because the proce-
dure that resulted in the penalty was unfair and illegal.
The National Football League is the only professional sport where the commis-
sioner, after dealing out a suspension, also acts as the arbitrator to hear the appeal of
the penalties he has imposed.
In professional baseball, for example, an independent arbitrator is retained to act
upon an appeal.
The NFL said it will appeal the Brady case to a higher court. It’s likely, however,
that Judge Berman’s ruling will stand, resulting in a fundamental change in the way the
league punishes players.
You would think that Goodell and his cohorts would have learned a lesson as the
Brady case is the fifth recent appeal they have lost in court. They are:
Bountygate: Four players’ suspensions were voided after the court found it was a
coach that instituted the cash-for-hits “bounty.”
Ray Rice: First suspended for two games for an assault on his fiancée, the com-
missioner later increased Rice’s penalty to an indefinite suspension. A federal judge
ruled that Goodell’s failure to understand the severity of the assault was not a valid rea-
son to increase the penalty.
Adrian Peterson: He was suspended indefinitely for disciplining his son by hitting
him with a tree branch. The court ruled that Goodell could not invoke a penalty rule in
August for an incident that occurred the previous May.
Greg Hardy: Suspended for 10 games for an attack on his ex-girlfriend. A judge
reduced the suspension to four games when the woman could not be located to testify.
Hardy may appeal the four-game suspension in light of the Brady case.
Undoubtedly, we have not heard the last of this embarrassing situation for the NFL.
One thing that is certain, however, the mess almost certainly will not affect the
interest and attendance for the 2015 season.
Miracle Set Attendance Record
The Fort Myers Miracle baseball team, although failing to reach the post-season
playoffs, set a new attendance record for the 2015 season that ended last weekend.
The Miracle drew 133,817 fans, surpassing the previous record of 124,749 in
2008. It was the third highest attendance in the 12-team Florida State League.
Fort Myers finished the season with an overall record of 76-63, the best in the FSL
Two Miracle members received post-season honors. Catcher-utility player Alex
Swim was named to the league’s post-season All-Star Team. He was the Miracle’s top
hitter with a .311 batting average in 85 games.
Manager Jeff Smith was selected as a coach for the All-Star Team.
New Mobile App
Sanibel Captiva Community Bank
has introduced a mobile banking
app for the convenience of its
The app lets customers use mobile
devices to check account balances and
transactions, make deposits, transfer
funds between accounts, locate ATMs
and bank locations, and make pay-
ments through Bill Pay or Popmoney,
which lets customers send, request and
receive money with just about anyone
“The ability to bank on the go
makes life easier for our busy custom-
ers,” said President and CEO Craig
Albert. “Our banking app is fast, secure
and easy to use, and because we are
locally owned and operated, we can
adjust deposit limits and make other
changes for our customers.”
The app is available for Apple and
Android devices at no charge.
To learn more, visit www.sancap-
Mobile banking app introduced by Sanibel
Captiva Community Bank
Registration Now Open For
Rookery Bay Adventure Race
The Friends of Rookery Bay Adventure Race, scheduled for Saturday, November
21 at 8 .m., includes a 3K kayak route along Henderson Creek and a 4K trail
run at the Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center, located at 300 Tower
Road in Naples. New this year is a 5K trail run-only category. Proceeds benefit the
Friends of Rookery Bay.
All participants will receive a T-shirt (sizes guaranteed if registered before October
31), post-race refreshments, Rookery Bay Reserve water bottle, free admission to the
Environmental Learning Center and entry for door prizes. Awards will be presented to
the top finishers in each category: men, women, relays, tandem teams and surf-skis.
The race is presented by Up A Creek Kayak Tours and benefits Friends of Rookery
Bay, with support from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. For more
information, visit www.rookerybay.org.
Water Ball Classic
Dry Zone, a local fire and water
cleanup and restoration busi-
ness, will host the 3rd annual
Water Ball Classic Charity Golf Event
on Friday, October 2 at West Bay Club
in Estero. The golf tournament will
benefit the Harry Chapin Food Bank of
The entry for each player is $100,
which includes cart and green fees, two
beverages on the course, and a score-
board party following the tournament.
Registration will begin at 8 a.m., with a
shotgun start at 9 a.m.
All proceeds will benefit the Harry
Chapin Food Bank. Non-perishable food
items will also be collected prior to the
The golf tournament is sponsored by
Elias Brothers Group-Contracting Division
and Sherwin Williams. Other sponsor-
ships opportunities are available.
“We’re proud to be part of this com-
munity, and this is just a small way to give
back after so much has been given to
us,” said Shannon O’Neill of Dry Zone.
“The Harry Chapin Food Bank is a great
cause, and we’re thrilled to have a chance
to support it.”
The Harry Chapin Food Bank solicits,
collects and stores quality food for distri-
bution to families in need through a net-
work of 150 nonprofit agencies in Lee,
Collier, Hendry, Charlotte and Glades
counties that provide food to more than
30,000 people monthly. Over 1 million
pounds of food are distributed by the
Harry Chapin Food Bank monthly. For
each $1 donated, the food bank can dis-
tribute $6 worth of food and groceries.
Registration and payment may be
made by sending checks, payable to Dry
Zone Inc., 3960 Radio Road, Suite 202,
Naples, FL 34104.
For more information about the event,
contact Shannon O’Neill at 643-1990.
Share your community news with us.
Call 415-7732, Fax: 415-7702
or email email@example.com
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