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Bedlam Aftermath | Flaw In O-State's Cheerleader Apology

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Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Antics from opposing fan bases occur quite frequently in the world of college athletics. Of course, the most notable of instances can usually be found on the hardwood rather than the gridiron. However, that does not exempt football from providing such cases.

Recently, an Oklahoma St. Cowboys cheerleader, Jarid Atkinson, has garnered attention around the interwebs. His attempt at tripping up Eric Striker, an Oklahoma Sooners linebacker, in the endzone after the game was in hand at the annual Bedlam Rivalry game has gone viral.

The university has decided to punish to discipline the cheerleader for his actions during the game. A lesson learned for all people not participating in the game and playing the role of onlookers...keeps one's hands and feet inside the car, or in this case, off the field of play at all times. While I am sure that Oklahoma St. University is handling the ordeal in a professional manner, it is Atkinson's attempt at playing this off as a joke...
Atkinson told OSU deputy athletic director Dave Martin that he wasn't actually trying to trip Striker, but that he was instead playfully sticking his foot out in a mocking manner. - NewsOK
in which I find fault. Why? Take a look at an earlier play...

Correct me if I am reading too much into it or am flat out wrong here but, as Jalen Saunders crosses through the endzone, Atkinson can clearly be seen stepping forward toward the field of play. As Saunders crosses in front of the aforementioned cheerleader, it appears as though spit flys in his general direction.

So was the attempt to trip Striker a mere coincidence or a repeat performance with malicious intent?