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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

When Social Media Become Social UGLY

Mike Parker is well known to west coast basketball fans.

He is the 12 year veteran voice of the Oregon State Beaver basketball, he succeeded a legend in Beaver broadcasting,  Darrel Aune.

Yesterday instead of instead of telling us the story, Mike Parker became the story.

An ugly video on You Tube was made even more public yesterday as Mike Parker admitted he was the person in the video. In essence and I will not go into detail the video shows an ugly moment of Parker's struggle with alcohol. In the state of Oregon today, it is the most talked about story in sports. (I refuse to watch the video, another person's struggles are not something I have and never will make light of).

Full disclosure, I have worked with Mike Parker before. He always treated myself with class and dignity. I respect him for that and I also respect the fact he is taking  his problems head on, getting help, realizing he has problems with alcohol and he will come out of it as a much better human being.

I don't respect a certain amount of people who seem to want to gain from Mike Parker's problems with alcohol. A talk show host in Portland, Oregon even posted the video on his website, which anyone with any journalistic morals would never do and certain Oregon Ducks (a small, small, small minority) have made comments about just another typical Oregon State Beaver getting in trouble. People in glass houses should not throw stones, even if Oregon and Oregon State are bitter rivals.

Even  Oregon State University put out a media release which I had some issues with, stating in a portion of the release that Mike Parker wants to continue to do Oregon State games. In support of Mike Parker, broadcasting Oregon State games should be at the bottom of the priority list and it was in poor taste for Oregon State to even bring that up in the media release. Life is forever, sports are temporary.

I had trouble writing this, I even wondered if I should write it at all, but I did, because I feel for Mike Parker right now, I feel for all human beings who struggle with alcohol and any other health issues. We hear about Mike Parker because he is a public figure, we often do not hear about others until it is too LATE.

I always say, the sign of true friends is too be there in the bad times, as well as the good. Mike Parker we are thinking of you and we are also thinking of the thousands of others who face major issues in their life each and every day.

Comments always welcome and emails to


  1. Greg,

    Thanks for your comments about Mike Parker. Neither he nor his loved ones deserve this unwarranted attention. I might feel differently if Mike's activity hurt someone or broke the law. He hurt himself; let him heal in peace. Mike earned my support and admiration long ago when I worked as a broadcast reporter in Portland. I don't waiver on that now.

    Time for a little charity, sports fans.

    -Mark Sanchez

  2. Mark:

    Thank you for reading this blog and commenting. You were one of the great TV reporters ever in Portland, Oregon and glad you are having success with

    Craw's Corner