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'Deflate-gate:' why do we cheat?

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) throws during the first half of the NFL football AFC Championship game against the Indianapolis Colts Sunday, January 18, 2015 (Credit: AP/Charles Krupa)I've been watching NFL games for five decades, but I've never heard of this. While no one is yet sure of exactly how it happened, recent reports have made it clear that 11 of the 12 footballs used by the New England Patriots in this past Sunday's AFC Championship Game were significantly underinflated (2 PSI when regulations require that all game balls be between 12.5-13.5 PSI). The difference was first noticed in the second quarter after Colts linebacker D'Qwell Jackson intercepted a pass from Tom Brady. The team then notified officials and the footballs were checked at halftime where the error was found.

The improperly inflated footballs had little impact on the final outcome of the game as New England, up 17-7 at the half, would go on to score 3 more touchdowns in the third quarter with, what one would presume, were properly inflated footballs in route to winning 45-7. I have no idea what the league will choose to do going forward. But I am intrigued by the larger question: why do we cheat? From taxes to athletics, cheating is part of the human story. As long as there have been rules, there have been people willing to break them.

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Stuart Scott: Cancer didn’t beat him, life didn’t pass him

Stuart Scott accepts the Jimmy V Award for Perserverance. (Credit: ESPN via Youtube) Early Sunday morning, the world lost someone who was "cooler than the other side of the pillow." Beloved Sportscenter anchor and adored father of two, Stuart Scott died at the age of 49. After battling cancer three times over seven years, Sunday morning’s news generated an outpouring of responses from all over the world.

Colleague and Hall of Fame broadcaster Chris Berman described Scott as being "full of life, which benefited everyone he ever came into contact with." Singer/rapper Nicki Minaj reflected on Stuart as a legend that changed the game. President Obama said he would miss him, believing that he not only entertained audiences, but inspired them with love and courage. The wide array of responses from a variety of spheres of culture is indicative of the cultural icon that we know as Stuart Scott.

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Cut by the team, a blessing in disguise

Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Devon Still (75) watches the Bengals perform against the New England Patriots in Foxborough, Massachusetts October 5, 2014 (Credit: AP/Stephan Savoia)At 6'5 and weighing 310 pounds, Devon Still was bound to stand out. During his time at Penn State University, Still played defensive tackle and was 2011 Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year. Upon graduating early, Still was selected in the second round of the 2012 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. However, those achievements are not the reason Still is drawing attention these days.

This past June, Devon Still's 4-year-old daughter, Leah, was diagnosed with stage 4 pediatric cancer. With this off-the-field heartache, Still's on-the-field play suffered. Deciding to be by his daughter's side instead of at the team's mini-camp, Still was cut from the Bengals' roster.

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