Four Corners: Who is your most disliked figure in sports?

September 20, 2010

Favre's soap opera

Dom Amore

Hartford Courant

An athlete who would have made my favorites list a few years ago now sits atop my negative list: Brett Favre.

Favre has committed no crime or reprehensible act. He just wants to keep playing football until they tear the jersey off his back. Fine. Say so, and show up when your teammates do.

When Favre led the Packers to the 2007 NFC championship game, fans poured out the love and appreciation for all he'd accomplished. How does one squander that much good will? Then came the tears, the return, strong-arming the Packers into trading him, the awkward, unsuccessful turn in New York, more tears, another change of heart. And after a great season for the Vikings and another chance to leave a hero, he milked it some more and came back when he felt like it. LeBron had a one-hour special; Brett's had a three-year soap.

damore@tribune.com

Dictator Jerry Jones

Shannon J. Owens

Orlando Sentinel

Jerry Jones tops my list by a country mile.

One teenage memory forever stains my mind. The year was 1994. I was at Duncanville High School, and someone announced on the loudspeaker that Jimmy Johnson had left the Dallas Cowboys. Why was this being announced at a high school? Because it was Texas. It's one of the few states where girls learn to appreciate Cover Girl and Cover-2s.

The brash-talking dictator Jerry Jones had let go of one of the best coaches in the league. Sure, the Cowboys churned out another ring in 1995 — they still had a talented roster. But the magic wasn't quite the same.

It has been over a decade since Dallas has been able to recapture the magic, and Jones is in large part to blame.

sowens@tribune.com

Big Ben, big jerk

Chris Korman

Baltimore Sun

How could anyone who has read the police report detailing what allegedly happened in Milledgeville, Ga., in March do anything but despise Ben Roethlisberger? True, he was not charged with rape after being accused by a 20-year-old woman. As is often the case, physical evidence was scant and she wanted to avoid a public trial.

But according to multiple witnesses, Roethlisberger had a "bodyguard" take the woman into an empty room. He then followed her into the bathroom when she tried to flee and, she said, wouldn't take no for an answer.

This wasn't another night on the town or a bit of a dicey situation. It wasn't a rowdy time caught on camera phone and blown out of proportion. It was Roethlisberger taking what he thought was his because of who he is. It was despicable, and Roethlisberger deserves to be hated.

Clippers' odious owner

Dave Fairbank

Newport News

Daily Press

Poor decisions and reprehensible acts with dogs aside, Vick isn't more unlikable than many of the assaulters, adulterers and card-carrying jerks throughout sports.

For instance: Buccaneers tight end Jerramy Stevens has a list of assaults, arrests and odious behavior dating back to high school.

Boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr. faces eight felony counts related to a domestic violence case against his former girlfriend. That on top of a racist video taunting rival Manny Pacquiao.

No list of "disliked sports personalities" would be complete without Clippers owner Donald Sterling. Bad enough to comprehensively mismanage a franchise for 30 years, the real estate mogul is a documented racist and sexist.

dfairbank@tribune.com

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