Not long after signing his letter of intent to play football at BYU, news broke that Charles West had been arrested and charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon and Marijuana Possession. According to sources, BYU coaches were aware of the accusations against West and they decided to recruit him anyway. Which begs the question: what should BYU football do about Charles West?
There are many factors that need to be sorted out before that question can be fully answered. First and foremost, it is important to know if West will be found guilty and receive jail time. With no sense of irony, it is easy to say that West can’t help the Cougars if he is behind bars. Likewise, if he is found innocent, it will be easy to say no harm, no foul and all will be forgiven.
It gets interesting, however, if he is found guilty and put on probation rather than serving a jail sentence. What should the Cougars do with him then? It’s dicey because on the one hand, BYU touts itself as a program doing things the right way and only playing kids of impeccable character. Part of the BYU brand is the squeaky clean choir boy mystique and West would not fit into that role.
On the other hand, neither did Kyle Van Noy whose legal troubles before enrolling at the Y are well-documented. The coaches took a gamble on the penitent KVN and it paid massive dividends for the program, as he became arguably the best defensive player in school history. Can Bronco help another kid straighten his life out? Only time will tell.