You have permission to edit this article.
Edit

Tyreek Hill: Cheer him or jeer him?

  • Updated
  • Comments
Tyreek Hill

Tyreek Hill's 278 all-purpose yards in week one ranked third in the nation.

Every Oklahoma State football fan remembers the play.

Dec. 6, 2014, No. 24 receives a punt on the 8-yard-line. Down seven with under a minute left, he runs past every player in those crimson uniforms and scores a touchdown to force overtime.

That was the last time OSU won Bedlam.

Now, Tyreek Hill wears No. 10 for the Kansas City Chiefs, and he still runs as if our laws of science don’t govern him.

Sunday, he and the Chiefs will be at the center of America’s biggest stage — the Super Bowl.

In last year’s Super Bowl, Hill caught the 44-yard bomb from Patrick Mahomes that propelled the Chiefs’ 10-point comeback and immortalized him as a Super Bowl champion.

But were OSU fans passionately cheering him on as they once did in Boone Pickens Stadium? Will they do the same as he defends the Chiefs’ throne against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers?

The answer varies as Hill is regarded as one of the most polarizing athletes in OSU football history.

Six days after Hill made the highlight of his collegiate career and gave OSU fans the highlight of their rooting lives, the Stillwater Police knocked on his door.

He was arrested on complaints of assault of his 20-year-old pregnant girlfriend. The police report said they got into a verbal argument that became physical.

“Hill threw her around like a ragdoll,” the report said. “He had punched her in the face, busted her lip, punched her in her stomach and choked her.”

OSU dismissed him from the team.

Hill pleaded guilty to domestic assault and battery by strangulation. He was sentenced to three years of probation, a sentence the victim said she was comfortable with.

The incident has made it impossible for some OSU fans to support him.

“I did root for him when he was at OSU,” Evan Kuterbach said on Twitter. “Once the information came out and he was kicked off the team, I never rooted for or claimed him again. I don’t think he should be associated with the OSU brand at all.”

A majority of respondents to an O’Colly post said they do root for him. Their explanations were brief.

“I will forever root for him. Once a Cowboy, always a Cowboy,” Duncan Ille said.

Here are a few more responses, some more explosive than others:

“Absolutely I’m rooting for him!”

“Yes. He did play at OSU and without him Gundy would be caressing that one Bedlam win.”

“Nope. Domestic abusers aren’t Cowboys in my book. Bye boy.”

“HELL NO! OSU rightfully kicked him off the team for domestic abuse against his pregnant girlfriend. Why would OSU want to claim him now just because he’s famous?”

Tyreek Hill’s past of domestic violence will always run with him.

To many OSU fans, there is no number of Super Bowl victories or All-Pro selections that will make up for that, and rightfully so.

But to others, they’ll most remember the high, wobbly kick caught at the 8.

“There goes the cheetah!” All the way to the Super Bowl.

sports.ed@ocolly.com