The trend continues.
West Virginia quarterback Will Grier has said farewell to the program, opting not to play in the Whatchamacallit Bowl on Whatever Day The Unimportant Bowl Games Are.
“After discussions with Jeanne and my family, and after receiving professional input, I have decided not to participate in our upcoming bowl game and focus on preparing myself and my family for what I hope is the next step in our journey,” Grier said in a message posted by program.
“Will and I spoke at length about the bowl game, and I am fully supportive of his decision to begin preparing for the NFL Draft,” WVU coach Dana Holgorsen said in a statement.
It’s a smart move for Grier, just as it’s a smart move for any NFL prospect who has emerged from a regular season healthy enough to play, or not play, in one more game. If West Virginia had qualified for a major bowl, that would have been one thing. By landing in one of the many made-for-TV satellite bowls, what’s the point?
College football players continue to be criticized for making business decisions, but everyone connected to the sport has been making business decisions for years. Why shouldn’t the players?
For example, does anyone think WVU didn’t encourage Grier to hold his decision for a week or so, in order to give people operating under the assumption Grier would be playing to buy tickets to the bowl game? That’s a business decision, too, aimed at boosting revenue for a college football program that, like every other college football program, gives none of the revenue directly to the players.
So keep making business decisions, college football players. It may be the most valuable lesson you learn during your time as an athlete-student.