What should BYU football do about Charles West?

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.

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  • Realistic Optimist

    Times are changing. We can either keep up with the change and adjust to the change or we can hold on to our old ways that do not work in this new college football environment, (Glory years of the 80’s to BCS) (BCS changed to P5 Conferences with Power 4 play off system) (SEC Demands).

    If we hold on to the old ways, that no longer work for us in this new environment, we will free fall into insignificance as far as college football is concerned.

    First, we must let the court do that which it will do. Next, we should handle the matter in the same way that the NCCA would handle the matter and if we want to be considered a P5 team, we should handle the matter like other P5 teams would handle it.

    We must be more P5 type of a team than a mid major type of a team if we want to be respected and accepted as a P5 type Independent team like N.D.

    That’s my opinion, and I know what the majority of you will lecture me about regarding BYU being a Church owned school with higher standards.

    When doing so, please be very, very, very careful not to insult Boston College, Baylor, TCU, SMU and ND. We have enough people calling us arrogant without insulting other religious institutions.

  • Dereck Smith

    I’d be shocked if West plays for BYU. People bring up KVN, but this isn’t even close to the same thing. If possession of marijuana was the only charge, then the Van Noy comparison might be valid.
    According to the reports, West ordered a prostitute who specialized in “foot fetish and Dominatrix” “services” and cut her up with a knife. If there is even a shred of truth here, this kid has habits/issues that would require a serious and difficult lifestyle change to even be considered for admittance to BYU. I just don’t think the kid has sufficient motivation to make that change.
    It would be much easier for him to make the much small change that would keep him from running afoul with the law in the future and just play for another school.

    • Realistic Optimist


      I liked your post and for the most part, I do agree with you.

      I would like to see a meeting of the minds of the major religious schools in our Nation that have Division 1 football, Boston College, Baylor, SMU, TCU, BYU and ND, and create a standard honor code for the religious schools that would come close to the NCCA standards, yet a bit more selective, and demanding that a higher code than the other schools must be followed to represent not only the University, the football team, but also the Church.

      I don’t think that we should be sitting ourselves up as the most strict school in the nation, but instead, have the said Division 1 religious schools of the nation, together, have a common goal and try to take action against violations, as a united body and not just an individual body.

      I think that what I am suggesting, is that we not shoot ourselves in the foot, recruiting wise, by having it be know that we are the most difficult school in the nation to survive in, if you are not LDS.

      How would you feel about that Dereck and other readers?