It’s Saturday, September 26, 2020, 8:22 pm EST and I just watched the Texas Tech University/University of Texas football game on TV, Channel 10, Fox Sports, played at Lubbock, Texas.

Texas Tech has not been a super-star winner at anything I know of in sports. Last year they had a great basketball team almost winning a national championship. But in football they have never been a national winner, despite having promise, year after year. As I recall Tech beat Texas last year, for the first time in history, and I thought it was going to happen again today, but it didn’t in one of the most improbable games I ever saw, or played in.

I was according to the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal the youngest and smallest Class A high school starting quarterback in the US in 1954, the second highest scorer in Class A high school football on the South Plains of Texas in 1958, all district four years in high school basketball, among other things, at Frenship High School at Wolfforth, Texas, ten miles southwest of Texas Tech.

Tech was behind at halftime after being ahead at the start of the game, so I assumed as usual they would fade away in the second half. After a nap I woke up surprised to learn they were ahead. They led by one touchdown late in the fourth quarter.

And then, amazingly, one of Tech’s running backs got loose on a long run putting them ahead two touchdowns, as if the Texas defense let him loose, after being surrounded by Texas tacklers, increasing Tech’s lead to either 15 or 16 points.

And then the Texas Tech coach, or someone on Tech’s coaching staff, with two minutes and forty eight seconds remaining, as I recall, decided to kick a strange kickoff, a high lofting kick that landed on about the forty yard line of Texas, where Texas took possession. It’s possible the Tech kicker somehow flubbed this kickoff, but I cannot see how. Seems to me it had to have been done on purpose. I also used to kick kick-offs in high school. Why in hades Tech didn’t kick the ball into the Texas end zone, which would have wound up on the twenty-five yard line with Texas in possession amazes me. Trying to burn a few seconds off the clock I suppose.

Well, anyway, to make this sorry story short, with about two and one-half minutes remaining in the game and 15 or 16 points behind Texas scored two touchdowns and tied the game at 56-56, having to score in the process at least one two-point extra point to tie the game, and recover an on-side kick-off, which they accomplished with an on-side kick-off after the ball passed through the hands of a Texas Tech receiver who could have recovered it. And then they proceeded to win the game in overtime. It was as if the Texas offense in the last two and one-half or so minutes magically got about three times better than they had been and the Tech defense got about fifty percent worse than they had been.

It’s commonly known that national political races in the US between dim Dems and repugnant Repugs are now manipulated and rigged as much as corporate money can buy, but before now I never thought college or any kind of amateur sports might be rigged. But now, thanks to this University of Texas/Texas Tech University football game of 2020, and the 2020 USian presidential race, I am beginning to wonder.

Surely the powers that be in collegiate and TV finance are not now so desperate for revenue that they are manipulating college football games to make them more exciting and exhilarating.

I am not accusing anyone of rigging the Texas Tech/Texas game but the weirdities and improbabilities of this game did make me wonder. Maybe the Covid plague and social distancing visible in the stands had something to do with it.

I have a grandfather who managed the chemistry lab at Texas Tech and a father who studied agronomy there, and I have three degrees from Tech. I was a member of a social fraternity at Texas Tech, Phi Gamma Delta. I sat in the stands for Texas Tech football games when I was in high school seriously impressed by the grandeur of the players, coaches, bands, and fans.

For all I know Texas Tech has never beaten Texas in football. I have watched one or two Texas Tech football games each year on TV for the last fifty years. Because of writing this comment, it came to me that Tech beat Texas last year. Is that right? I believe it is.

In another exciting, exhilarating, improbable football game this Saturday I watched the Ragin’ Cajuns of Louisiana University-Lafayette on ESPN beat the Georgia Southern Eagles of Statesboro, Georgia. I taught management in the business school at Louisiana Lafayette in 1969-70 after finishing my doctorate at Texas Tech, moving on to Georgia Southern in the summer of 1970, where I taught management thirty-five years, retiring in 2005. Georgia Southern won four national championships in football during my tenure as a GS professor.

My wife and I are now living our last days aboard Spaceship Earth within the confines of the beautiful Georgia Southern University Golf Course six miles south of Statesboro. My cheering, yelling, and cussin’ in our great room watching the Texas Tech and GA SO Univ games did no good this football Saturday, a surreal afternoon of frustrated desires.


Richard John Stapleton, PhD, CTA, is a certified transactional analyst, octogenarian emeritus professor of management, educator, writer, editor and publisher  


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One speaks in glowing and glorious terms in praise of liberty, the Rule of Law and in the most expansive way of enjoying freedom and rights and civil liberties for the fulfillment to live life itself. 

Journalists speak and write of liberty, the Rule of Law and in the most expressive ways – of life itself. 

We live in unprecedented times where the internet permits each of us access to the world. Quite literally anyone with internet access has a voice which if used, and all the more,  if used effectively, can speak to and impact the world. Julian Assange is the subject of this speech for he did express himself through the instrument of his wikileaks journalistic publications. And so be it, for that is what one holds dear as a right and expects to be afforded by reliance on the concept of freedom of expression. Publication of the truth should be a virtuous deed – should be. 

So, what did happen to Julian Assange? 

He was virtuous and he was innovative in the way he went about expressing and exposing various truths to the world. He spoke truth to power and all the way to the most powerful. America is but one country amongst many in the world – but, America also happens to be the most powerful country in the world. Britain at one point in time, in the not so distant past, laid claim to possessing the world’s largest ever Empire and is now superseded by America. How do these two countries then enter Assange’s story?  

Julian Assange exposed wrongdoings of both individuals and nation states and some of those exposures involved the wrongdoings of the United States of America, by factual and  accurate exposures such as arrest and imprisonments without a right to trial; tortures conducted  in the Guantanamo prison; drone strikes on civilians in Waziristan, Pakistan;  effecting of  extraordinary rendition ; war crimes committed in Afghanistan and Iraq of US troops knowingly and willfully slaughtering civilians; reneging on Article 9 of  the UN Convention Against Torture:- 

“states parties shall afford one another the greatest measure 

of assistance in connection with criminal proceedings brought in 

respect of any of the offences referred to in article 4, including the 

supply of all evidence at their disposal necessary for the proceedings.” 

– and more. All true – but America did not like that exposure of the truth. So, why not apply the Rule of Law to determine where Assange’s wrong resided, if indeed he was wrong, and then punish him according to law. Well, in point of law and stated simply, they can’t with any conscionable consistency do so. No less an authority than the US Supreme Court has so concurred. It is not mere guess work, but actual legal fact, that the New York Times and Washington Post newspapers had engaged in essentially illicit activities to obtain the Pentagon Papers and having so done published the said classified documents to educate and inform the American public about wrongdoings effected in their names during the period of the Vietnam War. Was that wrong? No! That is what journalists do as an essential and necessary and important part to their profession as journalists. They inform and provide the public with the truth. Did the laws of America permit that exposure? Indeed,  by reference to the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America that right is enshrined. Thus, the New York Times case was decided  in favour of freedom of speech.  

Therefore, in publishing harsh truths and having revealed facts about ‘American civilization’ as so practised – did Julian Assange break American law? Not if one considers clear precedent as regards what the highest court in the US has already confirmed to be the case that not only do journalists have the protection of the US Constitution – but the public has a right to know the truth. Therefore, what is the extradition application from the UK to the US of Assange for trial in essence all about? 

It is about the US hegemonic monster baring  raw fangs of power and also about telling a vassal state, the UK, that there is to be full conformity  with the monster’s wishes – however, illogical, unreasonable, inconsistent with precedent or simply grossly and manifestly unjust and contrived the extradition application is. Yet, the country which gave birth to the Magna Carta has willingly become a supplicant to the demands, wishes and desires of the US. So much so that Assange, finds himself being placed in a prison, Belmarsh, (previously termed the “British version of Guantanamo Bay” ) which exists to imprison category A male prisoners who are the UK’s worst and most serious terrorist offenders. Beyond that, the British justice system has so compromised and literally rubbished its own justice system to satisfy and ensure via a ‘show trial’ that every wish of the US is being steadfastly and subserviently complied with – that the Assange case debases much that is otherwise good and desirable under British justice properly applied. Should I be doubted then consider the following, and pay special attention to the reports on the 6th and 7th days of the proceedings in the Old Bailey:- 


COURTENAY BARNETT is a graduate of London University. His areas of study were economics, political science and international law. He has been a practising lawyer for over thirty years, and has argued public interest and human rights cases. He has published several articles in the Effective Learning Report. He lives and works in the Caribbean