Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Riley Cooper is taking heat for uttering a racial epithet offensive to blacks. To compound Cooper’s unwanted media exposure, the brother of teammate Michael Vick has placed a $1,000 “bounty” on his “hide,” as reported by the both Yahoo! Sports.
After admittedly after hoisting more than a few, Cooper was caught on amateur camera phone video recently at a concert where he angrily declared, “I will jump that fence and fight every n****r in here, bro.”
Reportedly, Cooper had just had a verbal confrontation with a black security guard. “I was drinking, but that is no excuse for what I said and what I did,” Cooper said. He also apologized to his teammates, the Eagles organization, fans, and the public in general.
Eagles teammates Michael Vick and Jason Avant, both black, have publicly forgiven and defended Cooper. Vick said:
[A]s a teammate I forgave him. I know what type of person he is. That’s what makes it hard to understand but easy to forgive him.
For his part, Avant tweeted:
I will say, when I’m around every day, he’s not that way. …I still sat next to him today to let him know I’m there for him.
Appearing to be a dead issue, Vick’s brother, Marcus, apparently unemployed and habitually involved with law enforcement, tweeted a $1,000 bounty for any player on an opposing team willing to take a cheap shot at Cooper:
Hey I”m putting a bounty on Riley’s head. 1k to the first Free Safety or Strong safety that light his ass up! Wake him up please….
No stranger to troubles with the law, the younger Vick was once a promising professional football prospect but instead found his rising star quickly fizzle due to numerous poor personal decisions in his private life.
A short list of examples include:
- While attending Virginia Tech, the star quarterback of the football team was charged with nine traffic offenses, as well as convictions for possession of marijuana and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
- On January 6, 2006, Virginia Tech announced his permanent dismissal from its football program “due to a cumulative effect of legal infractions and unsportsmanlike play.” In response to being thrown off the team, Vick has been quoted as saying, “It’s not a big deal. I’ll just move on to the next level, baby.”
- Vick was eventually signed by the Miami Dolphins to a free agent contract for league minimum pay as a “wide receiver/quarterback/return specialist.”
- Vicks professional career consisted of one quarter’s worth of play against the New York Jets, in which he recorded zero receptions.
- On June 13, 2008, a bicycle officer in Norfolk approached a couple arguing in a car. When asked for identification, Vick allegedly took off, driving the car at high speed. When another officer spotted the car and stopped it, Vick failed a sobriety test. He was charged with DUI, misdemeanor eluding police, driving on the wrong side of a street, reckless driving, driving on a suspended license, and was taken into custody.
- In August 2009, a judge ordered him to jail for probation violations including failure to complete an alcohol education program, testing positive for marijuana, missed appointments, and failure to pay court costs and fines. Vick was freed on a $25,000 bond and appealed the decision.
- In January 2013, a judge sentenced Marcus Vick to five days in jail for failing to produce adequate documentation about his financial status by a court-ordered deadline.