“If justice triumphs, I hope the Yale administration is pilloried in the press and their immense endowment takes a sizable hit. It would only be fair since they burned Jack Montague’s basketball dreams at the stake!”
Salem, Mass., is 150 miles from the Yale campus. Just 325 years ago, Giles Corey was the only male who was executed in the infamous Salem witch trial.
The righteous town fathers didn’t hang him as they did the hapless women falsely accused by hysterical girls. Instead, he was “pressed” to death – forced to lie under large wooden boards while rocks and boulders were piled on to squeeze the life out of him.
Not much has changed.
Expelled Yale basketball captain Jack Montague is a modern day Giles Corey. He’s the victim of a Title IX witch-hunt, where his dreams, reputation and future employment are being ‘pressed’ out of him with the same cowardly, irrational piety shown by those Puritan zealots of an earlier New England.
This young man should have been with his teammates Thursday in Providence, R.I. He should have been playing in front of millions of March Madness viewers, inspiring thousands of small-town boys who dare to imagine that sacrifice, sweat and relentless, lonely hours in a gym might position them for a brief taste of athletic glory.
I guarantee that no player in the history of Yale basketball was more dedicated to self-improvement, more single-minded in his love of the game, or more committed to his teammates. I know. I coached the boy for four years in high school.
Long before Montague was Yale’s captain, he was Brentwood High’s captain.
I believe that due process will eventually clear Jack’s name, that he will be granted his hard-earned diploma, and that he will move on to share his considerable gifts with the world. But I’m not sure how he will ever be compensated for the emptiness and infinite heartache of being torn from his teammates during their once-in-a-lifetime quest.
If justice triumphs, I hope the Yale administration is pilloried in the press and their immense endowment takes a sizable hit. It would only be fair since they burned Jack Montague’s basketball dreams at the stake!
Former Brentwood High School basketball coach