Some of us knew when Adam "Pacman" Jones wore the gold and blue at West Virginia University that he would be famous some day. That has become an understatement, though infamous is becoming a more appropriate term.
While I do not have the list of arrests and incidents in front of me right now, the number of times Jones has been arrested by, or been a subject of interest to, police is somewhere between 10 and 12.
Jones' seeming addiction to late night ventures to strip joints would seem to be the root of his troubles. Jones' latest saga began in Las Vegas during the NBA All Star game when he and some of his buddies went to a Vegas strip joint in the wee hours. Jones is said to have taken a bag with $80k cash in it to the club.
What happened inside the club may become more clear, but for now all we know is that there were altercations inside and outside of the club. Gunshots were fired and one bar employee was left paralyzed. Last week Jones was charged with two felony counts of coercion. Jones is said to have bitten a bouncer and made threats to kill some employees of the club. The shooter is believed to be one of Jones' posse.
The Vegas incident prompted NFL commissioner Roger Goodell to take harsh action against Jones, issuing a season long suspension, based on previous transgressions plus the strip club allegations. Interestingly, the night before Jones was to meet with Goodell in New York, Jones was in a New York strip club. Now, there were no incidents that night and going to the clubs is legal, but on the eve of a meeting with the commissioner, staying out of sight might be a consideration.
The suspension can be reviewed after 10 games, and if Jones has stayed out of trouble and changed direction, he could possibly be reinstated. At the time that also included being absolved of any wrong doing in the Vegas incident which now appears headed to court.
Even worse though is that two days before Jones was charged with the felonies last week, he was wanted by Atlanta police for questioning in yet another strip club shooting. No one was hurt in the 4 a.m. melee, but Jones had been with the suspected shooter earlier in the evening. Jones was reportedly not present when the shots were fired.
After the suspension Jones said he wanted to return to WVU and finish his degree while he served his suspension. There were rumblings that he would be using the football facilities and work out with the current WVU football players. Those intentions received some level of support from coach Rich Rodriguez.
That is understandable. Jones wants to get his life going in the right direction and get his lucrative football career back on track. A former coach should want to help a person in that situation.
But what about now?
Jones has shown no interest in heading in the right direction since he made those statements. He has become the lead story on too many news shows, sports and otherwise, for all the wrong reasons. What does Rodriguez do now if Jones is still serious about returning to school?
It would be difficult to turn your back on a player, but it would give opposing recruiters plenty of ammunition to wrestle potential WVU prospects away. Perhaps Jones' more complicated legal issues have his return to school on hold.