The Cowboys played their last game more than a month ago. The Super Bowl has been decided, and the whimper with which the Cowboys’ exited the season is only an echo now, barely audible. The shame, we thought, was at an end, at least for now. The circus was packed up and the clowns had gone home. So we thought.
The drama and confusion that characterized the 2008 season, however, has followed the Cowboys like a grim and persistent specter well into this off-season, with no sign of stopping or slowing down.
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First, VH1 gave the green light to a reality show starring Terrell Owens. Owens, coming off his worst season in recent memory will be followed, along with his best friends and publicists MoNique Jackson and Kita Williams, as he attempts to get his personal/romantic life back on track. At first, I drew a comparison between Owens, Flavor Flav and Bret Michaels. Now I realize that this is unfair. The more apt comparison, given the premise of the show, would be to Scott Baio, Arthur Fonzarelli’s cousin and star of Scott Baio is 45...and Single. (Does it strike anyone else as funny that Owens’ best friends are the two people directly responsible for bringing him attention?)
The recent non-story that was Dan Reeves brought another dark, speculative cloud over Valley Ranch. There are myriad theories as to why Reeves did not come to town, most involving Jerry Jones and Terrell Owens. The only certainty in this story is the remarkable amount of message-board blather it produced. And today, news surfaced that Terry Glenn was arrested last month on suspicion of public intoxication and marijuana possession. The incident comes as another small reminder that there are no slow-news days in and around Valley Ranch.
The saddest part of this dramatic Cowboys off-season, though, is the Bob Hayes saga. The former-receiver, who passed away in 2002, was recently (finally) inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Enter Lucille Hester, a possible sister of Hayes who possibly did some less than honest things (possibly). Since speaking at the Hall of Fame selection ceremony, a great deal of doubt has surfaced as to whether Hester is actually a relative of Hayes; a great deal of which was raised by Hayes’ family themselves.
In the middle of the controversy is a note, supposedly written by Hayes before his death, which details his desire to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Friends and relatives have expressed doubt that he would write such a letter, and several inaccuracies have amplified the suspicions. For example, Hayes thanks Roger Staubach in the letter, despite the fact that Don Meredith was the Cowboys’ quarterback for most of Hayes’ career. Further, Staubach’s name is misspelled (Stauback). The signature on the letter is inconsistent with those found on countless items of memorabilia from throughout Hayes’ life and finally, most curious: The font in which the letter was typed was made available to the public in 2007, five years after Hayes’ death and eight years after the letter was supposedly written.
Regardless of the authenticity of the letter or Lucille Hester, the whole situation is profoundly regrettable. It has turned what should have been a happy time for Cowboys fans (and Hayes' family, for that matter) into another reason for drama, another long, unfunny soap opera; and Dallas Cowboys fans have already had their share of those for a while.