There are sports guarantees, and then there are bets. Courtney Paris is dangerously bridging the two.
Paris, who stars for the Oklahoma Sooners women's basketball team, made a bold proclamation the last week. She said that if her Sooner team didn't win the NCAA tournament -- not just challenge for it, or make the Final Four, but actually win the whole thing -- she would repay OU her scholarship in full. Her words, not ours:
"We're gonna win a national championship. If we don't, which is not even an option, just to put something on the line - and it might take me the rest of my life - I will pay back my scholarship because I didn't do what I said I was going to do."
Whoa whoa whoa, Courtney. Paying for college is no joke. Sure, it sounds easy when you're in school -- oh, I'll just take out another loan and pay it back when I'm making $30,000 a year because I'll be SO RICH THEN -- but when you get that first bill, it stings. Think about this.
There are some reasons why the bet is ill-advised. For one, Oklahoma is no lock to win the national title. You don't have to know anything about women's hoops to know that UConn and Tennessee are annually dominant powers, and that challenging them usually doesn't go so well. This year, Geno Auriemma's UConn squad is, as Chris Chase at The Dagger reminds, one of his best ever. Gulp.
The other reason is that Courtney shouldn't feel bad about not earning her scholarship. Without getting too technical, that's not how scholarships work. They're just an agreement that you'll attend and live up to certain required standards; for student athletes, winning a championship is not one of those. Plus, Oklahoma has probably made a decent chunk of change from Courtney's work. No payback necessary.
We're sure Sooner women's hoops fans appreciate the gesture. It is pretty cool. But let's not get crazy here, Courtney. The WNBA's not paying those bills.
Eamonn Brennan is a writer, editor and blogger that thinks the Veteran Committee would give 65% approval to filet mignon. You can also read him at Yahoo! Sports, FanHouse, MOUTHPIECE Sports Blog, and Inside The Hall, or at his personal site, eamonnbrennan.com. Follow him on Twitter.