Craig James Can't Escape Sports Scandals

He'd like to be remembered as part of the "Pony Express" at SMU, but that's not happening

Wednesday, Feb 8, 2012  |  Updated 12:04 PM CDT
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Craig James Can't Escape Sports Scandals

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College football analyst Craig James is running for U.S. Senate in Texas.

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In the sports world, Craig James was a star football player for Southern Methodist University and the New England Patriots. He later became a household name in Texas as a television analyst for ESPN.

Now that he's running for the Senate, James can't separate his Republican politics from football, which accounts for nearly all of his name recognition. But drawing attention to his athletic exploits also means revisiting a pair of well-known scandals going back to the 1980s.

So instead of fielding public-policy questions, he must constantly fend off comments about how he took improper payments at SMU and played a role in firing a popular Texas Tech coach.

James says he "ready to move on." But it won't be easy in a state where football inspires almost religious devotion.

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