Monday, November 4, 2013

Rich Gannon says he got 'sick to his stomach' over financial hazing of rookies with Raiders

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In 1999, Rich Gannon signed with the Oakland Raiders as a free agent, and immediately became "sick to his stomach" over the way veteran players financially hazed rookies.

Gannon, who played 17 seasons in the league as a quarterback and currently serves as an analyst for CBS, recalled the situation with much concern.

From USA TODAY:

"They would have these guys go with them to these expensive restaurants in San Francisco and they would literally go in there and try and order the most expensive things off the menu," he said. "The veteran guys would order three entrees, they would order $1,200, $1,500 bottles of wine. They would order the most expensive bottles of champagne.

"Every guy at the table would order a bottle for himself, guys were ordering bottles to take home with them: 'Give me two of those bottles to go.' And they were running up these $30,000, $40,000 tabs at dinner and then have the rookies pay for it."

Because of what he saw, Gannon says, "I have a very strong take on bullying."

The concept of hazing or initiating people to a group has gone on since the beginning of time. However, there are certainly lines that can be crossed in the process, and the situation involving the Miami Dolphins with Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito certainly serves as evidence, in addition to the example Gannon recollected above.

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