No further discipline for Frank Clark

Submitted by Butterfield on September 12th, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Title really says it all.  Hoke elaborates here:|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE 

Without knowing what non game-related penalties Clark was faced with, it's pretty hard to determine if the discipline was just right, too much or too little.  In any event, happy to have Mr. Clark back and wish the kid well on the field and off. 



September 12th, 2012 at 6:50 PM ^

You do understand the difference between probation and parole. I was "plead guilty" to something, when I got caught using a fake ID in college (in East Lansing of all places). After six or nine months, I received a letter in the mail saying the charges were dropped because I had completed my probation without further arrests. That is likely all he will have to do, not get arrested in the next year.


September 12th, 2012 at 12:59 PM ^

Hoke has been saying this all along. He knew what happened, and Clark has already been punished thoroughly over the offseason and during the first week, same as Fitz. The plea didnt change anything and I'm ok with that, if Hoke says he's done his time, considering what weve seen of Hoke re: dicipline, I'm ok with this.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:23 PM ^

Hoke says he's done his time, and the Judge and Prosecutor have accepted the plea deal. It's important to remember that Hoke is not the sole judge, jury, and executioner in this thing. People are saying, "trust Hoke" or "it's not severe enough" but that leaves out the fact that Hoke's punishments are IN ADDITION TO  whatever the state (i.e., the Judge) decides to do.


September 12th, 2012 at 4:55 PM ^

but apparently Hoke has chosen not to.

Rumor has it Hoke pointed at Clark and Fitz intensely and with tremendous purpose for several seconds, and both players saw the light and are forever changed for it.

In reality, I'm sure both were harshly punished behind the scenes, and I trust Hoke has managed these incidents to his satisfaction and that of UM.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:41 PM ^

An argument of whether 1 game, 2 games, or 3 games properly atones for stealing is sort of silly. How many snaps gets the laptop unstolen?

Regardless, saying "It should have been 3 games, not 1" means you largely agree, you're just slightly differing on extent. Many people seem to want Clark gone.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:40 PM ^

Lives are ruined literally every day due to one single mistake and if he steps out of line again and the judge chooses not to clear his record, his life will be ruined regardless of what we have to say. Hoke has to think about the program as a whole and this is just the wrong call if the goal is to hold yourself to a higher standard than the rest.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:43 PM ^

Hoke IS thinking about the program as whole.

Hoke needs to walk into the rooms of 20+ parents a year and convince them that he's going to turn their son into a better football player and a better person. If he starts cutting kids lose due to first-time-offenses that the school itself doesn't deem serious enough to warrant expulsion (check the student code of conduct on stealing), neither should Hoke. Hoke is confirming his commitment in helping to develop the kids under his control, and not wash his hands of them the first time they do something wrong.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:49 PM ^

How can you say that this decision is good for the program? That it would play well with parents? He doesn't have to kick him off the team to not play him. I think this sends the wrong message to other players and recruits that if you are an important piece of the team you will be shown undue leniency. 

Look, you seem to generally agree with what Hoke did here, I think the guy should have to sit at least until the felony is dropped from his record. This is because a significant part of Hoke's message involves holding yourself to a higher standard at Michigan. I think part of this is more severe treatment of transgressions.


September 12th, 2012 at 2:39 PM ^

This the most reasonable point made on this topic yet, one I've been trying to make, but haven't made as well as you have here.

We don't know what really happened with the laptop, and we don't know what has gone one between Clark and Hoke, outside of the suspension. My gripe isn't with people saying "Clark should be punished." It's with people saying "I know enough about what happened to definitively say this punishment isn't strong enough."


September 12th, 2012 at 4:47 PM ^

Don't let a little thing like the law stand in the way of a good argument, right?  He is not a convicted felon, and he will not be under the terms of the statute governing his plea agreement (HYTA):

". . .if an individual pleads guilty to a criminal offense, committed on or after the individual's seventeenth birthday but before his or her twenty-first birthday, the court of record having jurisdiction of the criminal offense may, without entering a judgment of conviction and with the consent of that individual, consider and assign that individual to the status of youthful trainee."

So, we have a youthful trainee dressing for games, not a felon.  After satisfying the terms of his agreement, he will have (and currently has) no criminal record.  That is an important distinction given the fact that your argument, such as it is, appears to swing entirely on his legal status.  The State of Michigan believes he should have another chance after paying his dues, and you think Hoke shouldn't?


Sten Carlson

September 12th, 2012 at 5:31 PM ^

For fuck sake dude!

Frank Clark is NOT a convicted felon.  He plead guilty as per the HYTA, which requires that the accused plead guity in exchange for probation and upon its successful completion, expungement.  He will only be a "convicted felon" should he violate the term of his probation.

Stop being such a blowhard!


September 12th, 2012 at 5:47 PM ^

Do you mean to say a felon is in our midst? Heavens! Lock away your women, and ride your horseless carriages to another town where we can all be safe!

Look, there is legitimate discussion to be had over this decision. IMO Clark's offense--based on what we little we know--was worse than Fitz. And perhaps there is a punishment worse than whatever it is he received that is more appropriate, I don't know, because I don't know all the facts. But I do know that to put on your shocked face and repeat "felon" over and over like that decides everything, is foolish.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:56 PM ^

I'm amazed at how many people are seeming to forget (1) that this is basically just a kid, which makes him prone to bad decisions, (2) that he's a human being not an object that we ought to use to "set an example" or "make a statement" and (3) the purpose of punishment in the first place. It isn't to make up for the bad thing the punishee has done. It's to help the kid learn from his mistake and be a better citizen in the future. And that's going to vary from kid to kid, and from situation to situation.

I know a lot of people want to say "LOL Dumbtonio and Brian Kelly let criminals play cuz they are so jealous of Michigan they have to win at all costs," but feeling butthurt because you lost your pretend bullshit moral high ground is no reason cut a kid loose and severely negatively impact his life beyond what is necessary because of a bad decision.

When Hoke tells parents that he treats the kids on the team like family, this is what he means. When you have a son or daughter that makes a bad decision, you help them learn from it. You don't kick them out of the house for the first offense.


September 12th, 2012 at 2:12 PM ^

Perhaps I'm alone here... I'm not sure I agree with the whole, aww shucks he's just a kid meme.  He's at least 18.  You can vote.  You know right from wrong at this age.  Stealing someone's candybar because you want one is a heck of a lot different than stealing someone's multi-thousand dollar computer.  He SHOULD know the difference.


September 12th, 2012 at 3:00 PM ^

Its just a laptop, the kid probably got it back anyways when he got caught or he can just get another one.  Stupid to even suspend him for one game, if the court date had been before Alabama he could have played. It was a legal problem so let the legal system handle it.  My professor wouldn't suspend me from classes if the cops got me for something, so why should a coach?


September 12th, 2012 at 3:11 PM ^

"he can just get another one" suggests you aren't actually a student, since nobody who has any idea how much work can be lost when a computer gets stolen would say that. i, for one, would want a kid who stole a computer from a classmate out of my classroom immediately.

disclaimer that wouldn't be necessary if the michigan difference involved reading comprehension skills: i don't know what frank clark did, and nothing i've said suggests that i have an opinion about it, but i do think that if he stole somebody's work computer, he should be removed from the university community via expulsion immediately.


September 12th, 2012 at 4:09 PM ^

Not all wrong action stems from ignorance of right and wrong.

Of course he knew it was wrong, unless he's a sociopath. But knowing what the right thing to do is and doing it are different things, and people get better with it as they age (or at least most people do) and as they develop. The fact that we give the right to vote to people who are 18 has nothing to do with whether most 18 year olds have fully developed systems of impulse control. They don't.


September 12th, 2012 at 3:48 PM ^

things about how Dantonio handled Sims. And Dantonio was crucified by U-M fans.

Sims didn't play for a full year -- even before he pled to a misdemeanor. I now fully expect everyone over here who wants to leave discipline to Hoke -- as it should be -- will stay quiet concerning MSU's approach to discipline.


September 12th, 2012 at 3:24 PM ^

I would be completely fine if this was a case of sliding across a hood of a car, a minor-in-possession, or even getting caught with pot.

The fact that this was Clark STEALING someone else’s laptop hits closer to home. I remember having my laptop stolen while I was a freshman in the dorm. It absolutely sucked. I put in a whole summer's worth of work at a landscaping company in order to play for that laptop. To come back from class one day and find out that someone had stolen it was a punch in the gut.

If they had ever found out who did it, you bet that I would charge the criminal to my fullest ability. Stealing someone else's hard earned property is disgusting.

I mean we all rag on Urban Meyer being a poor disciplinarian, but he kicked Cam Newton off the Florida for a similar charge.  I'm not saying that Hoke should follow suit, but I just don't think that one game is adequate.

turd ferguson

September 12th, 2012 at 1:09 PM ^

Hopefully there are no further threads on him, too.  I don't mean that as criticism of the OP, but at some point, when the guy has dealt with punishment from the legal system, missed one of the highest-profile games of his college career, dealt with whatever the coaches gave him in the offseason, and seen his problems splashed repeatedly over a bunch of media sources, the punishment probably fits the crime.

He screwed up, but I will be cheering for him and would love to put this stuff to rest at some point.


September 12th, 2012 at 1:10 PM ^

I think one game is not enough, regardless of what the "internal" discipiline was. I'm sure Hoke doesn't give a $hit what I think but it doesn't change my opinion.

He should sit until the Felony charge is wiped from his record (yes until next Oct). Harsh I know but, but "no Felons will play for UM" is not too strict of a rule in my book...

He could still practice and then play at a later date. He could still go to school, keep his schollie and be a student and if he is fortuante have the chance to go to the NFL.


BUT we need a DE so Hoke will play him.