Skip to content

Writers voted against process, not for Cushing

Brian Cushing lost 19 votes in the Associated Press defensive rookie of the year do-over, but he didn’t lose the award.  Here’s a complete breakdown of the voting.

In the end, many of the votes for Cushing were votes against the re-vote process.

Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, who is president of the Pro Football Writers of America, had a telling quote:  “If I had known in January when we initially voted that Brian Cushing
had tested positive for a banned substance, I might not have voted for
him,” Williams said.  “However, Cushing won
the award in January, and I don’t feel like we should revise history.  I
am concerned about the precedent.”

Our old PFT colleague Tom Curran agreed with the sentiment and kept his vote for Cushing:  “You can’t have a re-vote every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to,” he said over the phone.


“The AP didn’t mess up.  Cushing did,” Curran said.  “He won’t get much enjoyment from looking up at his mantle and seeing the trophy
commemorating his season.  It will mock him.  But the AP didn’t have to make a
mockery of its awards process by giving everyone a mulligan.

One writer, Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, felt strongly enough about this principle to change his vote from Jairus Byrd to Cushing.  Bouchette, who I greatly respect, wrote that he didn’t agree with the re-vote.  [Editor’s note:  I’ll refrain from going berserk on Bouchette because I respect him and like him.  However, if Cushing had ended up winning the award by only one vote, I would have gone berserk.]

I’ve said my peace on the decision, and so has Florio.  The entire process doesn’t make anyone look good, including the AP

And finally, a few notes that are too bizarre not to include:

1. Chris Berman has a vote.  Really?  [Editor’s note:  Dear Mr. Berman, please direct any profanity-laced retorts to Gregg “Three-G” Rosenthal.]

2.  Poor Brian Orakpo lost two voters, who changed their mind and chose other non-Cushing defenders.  Strange.

3.  Howie Long was “not available.”  Taping a truck commercial, perhaps?

Permalink 45 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Houston Texans, Rumor Mill, Sprint Football Live - Rumors, Top Stories
45 Responses to “Writers voted against process, not for Cushing”
  1. shannyskins says: May 12, 2010 6:54 PM

    Poor Orakpo? He got 2 votes the first go around…so if 2 voters changed there mind and voted for someone else, then 3 of them changed there mind and voted for him…

  2. ☻☼CBS, FOX, ESPN, NFLN nbc says: May 12, 2010 6:56 PM

    Brian Orakpo didn’t deserve it. I’m a die hard Skins fan but he was not DROTY.

  3. Raider3:16 says: May 12, 2010 7:01 PM

    Is it so wonder we call them mediots?

  4. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 7:06 PM

    Let’s call a spade a spade. Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is a complete a-hole for stealing a vote from a clean player and giving it to a dirty player. ( Of course, that paper is known for it’s poor reporting – it is the paper that reported all that erroneous BS about the Jets’ WR Holmes getting thrown off a plane that was a total lie. )The rest of those voters that voted for Cushing on principle are similarly fill of s**t. If you want to protest the process, you abstain from voting. The damn reporters and sportswriters think they are God. I hope the AP removes them as voters, and then they can join the ranks of all those writers who opine ‘ If I had a vote, I would…’ These 18 people embarrassed the AP and basically told the AP to stick it – they wouldn’t not agree with the AP’s effort to be fair. Those 18 writers insisted that they would rebel and reward a cheater anyway. But Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is a total total jerk and PFT should not be trying to suck up to him as a pal. Tom Curran always was a jerk, and continues to be so.

  5. downwithdansnyder says: May 12, 2010 7:06 PM

    ” “You can’t have a re-vote every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to,” he said over the phone.”
    UMM…it’s not that it didn’t go the way someone wanted it to…it’s that he CHEATED. BIG f’ing difference. Why not just give it to #2? What of all the talk about Reggie Bush giving up the trophy to V. Young? He may be right there shouldn’t have been a re-vote…they should have just given it to #2 and been done with it. Cushing cheated and apparently may have always been a cheater.

  6. Raydahz says: May 12, 2010 7:06 PM

    And writers wonder why everybody hates them. They can never just do the right thing or write the responsible article. They always have to try to be controversial or they’re always only looking out for their own careers. Kill you all with fire!

  7. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 7:11 PM

    CBS, FOX, ESPN, NFLN nbc: the award is called DROY. And don’t claim you are a die hard Skins fan if you can’t support your own player. He was on the ballot, which means a lot of other people thot he was worthy. Just not you. Find another team.

  8. BigSuede says: May 12, 2010 7:27 PM

    This just proves that sportwriters are perhaps the biggest enablers and supporters of the roided up athlete. These guys love there athlete friends so much that they LITERALLY take a blind eye to the dangers of this serious drug.
    The AP just solidified what a joke their awards really are. Bravo Brouchette, you and 17 others have helped render you own award meaningless

  9. ZombieRevolution says: May 12, 2010 7:47 PM

    1. Chris Berman has a vote. Really? [Editor’s note: Dear Mr. Berman, please direct any profanity-laced retorts to Gregg “Three-G” Rosenthal.]
    Greg- while the Florio style of reporting/blogging will get you webhits and notoriety, it kills your journalistic integrity.
    Maybe Greg and Florio should show up at the press conferences and really stand up for what they believe in rather than throwing out a hurriedly written blog piece. Maybe you should be trying to get those in power in the NFL together to change things rather than ranting to readers. You could try shaming the other NFL writers and the enablers that keep this thing going.
    Or better yet- show you really care by not supporting the NFL until it cleans up its act.

  10. Bazooka Joe says: May 12, 2010 7:54 PM

    Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, who is president of the Pro Football Writers of America, had a telling quote: “If I had known in January when we initially voted that Brian Cushing had tested positive for a banned substance, I might not have voted for him,” Williams said. “However, Cushing won the award in January, and I don’t feel like we should revise history. I am concerned about the precedent.”
    Yeah, the precedent of taking something away from a cheating white player. Had this been Orakpo, then I have a feeling he wouldn’t mind setting the “precedent.”
    This is why I tell white people, who cry about the unfairness of affirmative action or the Rooney Rule or anything to do with African American History, to go straight to hell.

  11. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 7:55 PM

    I hope that the AP reevaluates these 18 rebels who apparently were objecting the Ap decision to provide a more fair vote. Surely each voter must have their credentials checked periodically. There are surely 18 other journalists and sportscasters around the nation who are less stubborn about the goals of the AP. Please, please make a statement , AP. Remove these 18 people from your voting. Most of them are wannabe’s or hasbeens, anyway.

  12. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 8:02 PM

    Chris Berman is an over the hill relic. If he is an example of who is qualified to vote for the AP, I just lost total respect for any AP award. Berman has been ridiculed as a sportscaster for the last 5 years. He is merely a figurehead from the old ESPN days. ESPN keeps him around cos they don’t want him somewhere else bitching about ESPN – like FoxSports or even NFL.com. How many of these AP voters has anyone ever heard of? They seem to be old school hasbeens.

  13. CushingKicksAss says: May 12, 2010 8:07 PM

    Golly gosh Mr. Rosenthal, thank you so, so, so much for informing all of us non-media types of this really, truly important story. Let me see if I have this right: the AP and a few limp-wristed writers were soooooooooooooo concerned that they’d look like idiots for voting for Brian Cushing for Defensive Rookie of the Year that they ANNOUNCED a first-time-ever re-vote; they then re-voted for an award that is supposed to be based on what a player does on the field (you know, like win Super Bowls rather than raping women); then it turns out that Cushing wins the award ANYWAY! Hmmmm. Yeah, Cush is looking worse and worse all the time.

  14. TFBuckFutter says: May 12, 2010 8:08 PM

    This is bullshit.
    If he tested positive RECENTLY than yes, there’s no need for a revote.
    But he tested positive during the window for which he’s being judged. They just didn’t KNOW IT.
    So who really screwed up? The NFL by not arbitrating the test in a timely manner. There’s no way a guy should fail a test and not be subject to punishment until the NEXT SEASON.

  15. AlanSaysYo says: May 12, 2010 8:16 PM

    Pete Prisco voted for Cushing again. No surprise there as Prisco is an idiot. But shame on the rest of that group, no matter what their reasons. I agree that if they disliked the process, they should have abstained. And if they still really wanted to vote for Cushing, they’re just fools.

  16. Shaen Ross says: May 12, 2010 8:23 PM

    Anti-Infamatory, aspirin, steroids…It’s all performance enhancing.
    Let these guys do what they need to do to get ready to play. The only people that really seem to have a problem with PEDs are reporters.
    Nobody cares about steroid use, let them all juice..their life, their bodys their choices.
    This country is starting to resemble Red China.

  17. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 8:23 PM

    CushingkicksAss, why don’t you just go suck on Cushing’s shrunken sack.

  18. GirthyOne says: May 12, 2010 8:34 PM

    Those writers should be stripped of their voting rights. If they wanted to protest they could have written about it. Losers.

  19. QJ1984 says: May 12, 2010 8:35 PM

    Curran is an absolute idiot. What makes him think that Cushing wont still take pride in winning the award. He, Cushing, has known all along that he was cheating and happily accepted the award and took credit for having such a great season. Why the hell would that change now that he’s been caught? He had no shame in it when he was doing it or when he accepted the award.
    I hate sports writers, they had a chance to put this kid in his place and give the award to a deserving person and they flat out failed. I’d reckon AP needs to get some new voters.

  20. Paul_R. says: May 12, 2010 8:35 PM

    “However, if Cushing had ended up winning the award by only one vote, I would have gone berserk.”
    Ooh, how scary that must be. (this statement doesn’t even rate an exclamation point because …)

  21. MrONE50 says: May 12, 2010 8:47 PM

    I was caught off guard by this report. I would have thought that the media and sports writers were so against drug use. But lets not play ourselves here. The media is above the law. And heres why the re-voted for Cushing (making him the only two-time rookie of the year ever in the history of sports)…
    1. The media is “never wrong”, and a revote against the original vote would be like saying they were wrong the first time.
    2. It’s not about the big picture, it’s about the BIG STORY. The big story will be ” why did it take so long for the people to find out.
    3. The media thinks the general public is stupid and only know that the media tells them.

  22. mr_snrub says: May 12, 2010 8:52 PM

    Those writers used some of the dumbest logic I’ve ever heard. If you don’t agree with the revote then you abstain – you don’t vote for the guy who cheated.
    As for Charean (boy or girl?), what a moron for a president for the pro football writers “”However, Cushing won the award in January, and I don’t feel like we should revise history. I am concerned about the precedent.”
    Yeah, we’re all now more concerned with the precedent you writers just set with your nonchalant attitude towards ‘roids. And good god, since when is information a bad thing?

  23. Larry David says: May 12, 2010 9:00 PM

    These voters are so dumb. “You can’t have a re-vote every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to.” Wtf? Well, you can have a revote when you find out someone cheated, it’s not that difficult to do. So if Peyton Manning had been caught for using steroids, we should still give him the MVP award?

  24. XLI says: May 12, 2010 9:10 PM

    What?!?
    Explain this: He is suspected of using Performance Enhancing Drugs. Upon Revote, they upheld their vote for Cushing.
    IS IT POSSIBLE THAT HE WAS DEF ROOK OF THE YEAR BECAUSE HE IS ON P.E.D.s???
    You are essentially validating and supporting his “Enhanced Performance”.
    If the NFL had a pair, they would change the rulings that would ban players who test positive for banned substances to be unable to receive Postseason Awards.
    NFL, he cheated and got rewarded for it?!? What?

  25. Lumas101 says: May 12, 2010 9:38 PM

    I’ll start by admitting that I am a Bills fan and therefore biased because I desperately wanted to see Jairus Byrd win. That being said, I find it wrong that someone changed their vote TO Cushing in some sort of protest. I now feel that voters who did not originally vote for Cushing should not have been permitted to change their vote because the person they believed was the best rookie was unaffected by this suspension. I also find it aggravating that Byrd lost by five votes–three if Bouchette had been unable to change his vote and if he is the only one who made such a change–and five people did not participate in the re-vote.
    Like I said I am biased, but this situation seems wrong to me.

  26. kpweaver27 says: May 12, 2010 9:58 PM

    “You can’t have a re-vote every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to”
    Gore v Bush. Sure ya can. I blame the hanging chads and the steroids. The fact is, this shouldn’t have been a re-vote. The AP should have stripped him of the award and given it to the 2nd highest finisher, which was Byrd. This whole thing is a mockery, and for the next ten years when the AP gives an award, they’ll be mocked for this.

  27. Dont Taze Me Bro says: May 12, 2010 10:33 PM

    I agree with the writers who voted for Cushing the second time. Not because he deserves the award, but because the AP tried to pass the buck onto the writers.
    If the AP had a problem with Cushing then he should not have been on the ballot at all for a second vote. When the AP allowed writers to vote Cushing, they were passing the buck. I would have voted Cushing too and passed it right back to them.

  28. FreeAgentPro says: May 12, 2010 10:34 PM

    I agree. The AP has a knack for picking the cheater out of a lineup of candidates. They should have an award for Defensive Cheater of the Year.

  29. Turd Furguson says: May 12, 2010 10:37 PM

    Revoting was a retarded idea supported by retarded people like “Three G” Rosenthal, and FreeAgentPro. They didn’t take away the Patriots superbowl when they cheated to win. They didn’t do a revote for the Superbowl MVP when they found out Tom Brady was cheating… Why would they waste time revoting on this? UP YOURS ROSENTHAL YOU ARE A DOUCHE.

  30. Ryan35 says: May 13, 2010 12:00 AM

    Thats pathetic the guy cheated and the people that vote for the awards knew it and still voted for him. Who says cheaters never win? Well done AP I will never respect any award you hand out again.

  31. Pigskin Potentate says: May 13, 2010 12:16 AM

    Funny how, and when people choose to make it “about the process” as opposed to getting it right. Can’t help but wonder, that if this had been Brian Orakpo, how many of those people would have made it “about the process”, funny to see people bend their logic into pretzels trying to justify their decisions IN THEIR OWN MIND, and the crazy part is they convince themselves that, that is the reason that they came to that conclusion. I guess it’s easier to delude yourself than to come to the harsh realization from where that decision truly comes from.

  32. Ryan35 says: May 13, 2010 12:22 AM

    I have to laugh at that Bouchette, he really doesnt know who he thought was DFROY. Or is he voting for drug use? I just can’t make sense of voting for a cheater. I’ll agree that the AP probally passed the buck, and should have removed him from the ballot or just rewarded it to Byrd. But the writers that voted again for him you are pathetic, way to support the cheater. I have no respect for any of you.

  33. NagaSwan says: May 13, 2010 12:49 AM

    AP awards are now worthless. Good work AP.

  34. mrknob says: May 13, 2010 12:57 AM

    All I can really say is – NFL player using ‘roids is to dog biting man. Duh! They use steroids. Really, I am so shocked. Because the human body really should develop like a modern football player’s, yeah that is totally natural, it’s just that this one guy, Cushing, tested positive and now we all get to act sanctimonious and holier than thou. It’s not like we all did not know this already. Oh wait, football players are to fan delusion as followers are to cult. Wake up, they all do ‘roids or some other drug. So what? Get a life. Move on.

  35. The_Emperor says: May 13, 2010 1:05 AM

    I guess cheaters DO win after all…

  36. ItalianArmyGuy says: May 13, 2010 1:06 AM

    I missed the vote count – did Ziggy Hood win?

  37. bobinpuertorico says: May 13, 2010 1:43 AM

    These 18 ignorant fools voted for Cushing despite the fact that he played “dirty” in every game last year, because the benefits of his steriod use (increased strength, stamina, etc.) did not vanish the moment he ended his steriod cycle and took a banned substance to kick start his body’s production of testosterone. Now they are attempting to rationalize their votes. They should either admit that they were wrong to vote for a cheater who could not perform at the level that he did without steriods, or they should say they do not care if they reward a cheater, there is no other explanation. Their vote sends a message to young people everywhere that cheating will be rewarded. If you want to be a football star, just take steroids. If you want academic honors, copy off another person’s test, or better still, pay someone to take your tests or do your homework for you. Furthermore Mr. Rosenthal, anyone who says they respect any of these 18 voters who supported Cushing is equally guilty of sending this same message to young people. These 189 voters should be reviled, not respected!

  38. bobinpuertorico says: May 13, 2010 1:44 AM

    Typo at end of my statement – “18 voters”

  39. boltmancraft says: May 13, 2010 3:49 AM

    You just couldn’t accept the fact that he still won the ROY award, could you? You just HAVE to keep poking that dagger in and twisting it by inventing some sad, pathetic spin on a pointless, hypocritical process, don’t you? Very sad. Just as I’m trying to think maybe you’re not so bad after all, and now this. You really are a sad, Napoleonic little man, aren’t you?

  40. We need linemen says: May 13, 2010 5:50 AM

    “# ☻☼CBS, FOX, ESPN, NFLN nbc says: May 12, 2010 6:56 PM
    Brian Orakpo didn’t deserve it. I’m a die hard Skins fan but he was not DROTY.”
    Same here. Orakpo had a good season as a part time defensive end, but struggled playing coverage as a linebacker.
    Had they just played him at DE full-time he would probably have had an even better season and would have deserved the award.

  41. We need linemen says: May 13, 2010 6:11 AM

    I think AP voters will come to find that a vote for Cushing is regarded as a vote for Cushing. If they wanted to protest against the process they should have abstained from the vote or demanded that the award should not be awarded for last year, with a notation made that the award was stripped from the winner of the vote.
    This isn’t a case of an award being stripped because of players actions after the award was won. Cushing cheated during the season that he won the award.
    By AP voter logic Ben Johnson should get his Olympic gold back. After all we can’t just go around arbitrarily changing results “every time something doesn’t go the way you want it to”.
    The next time one of the Cushing re-voters gets robbed I hope the police opt not to set a precedent by trying to catch the perpetrator. After all if you can’t prevent the crime, there is no point trying to serve justice after the event.
    It opens up a whole new branch for government efficiency. Disaster relief, no point trying to fix something after it has happened. Health care, don’t worry about the ones who are already sick, it’s too late to change these things.
    If AP has any sense Cushing, as a convicted cheat, should have been excluded from the vote. Voters should have been given the option to withhold the award for the year. AP and any source publishing lists of the winners should be encouraged to place a notation that the award was stripped from Brian Cushing, alongside the new winner, if one was declared.
    They should have seen this not as an attempt to cover up a mistake, but to revel in the opportunity of publicly fixing an injustice.

  42. NoseBleedFan says: May 13, 2010 7:47 AM

    A very clear message has been sent in the re-vote…It’s ok to cheat. Disgusting.

  43. Strick says: May 13, 2010 9:06 AM

    So these voters stood by their principles and, apparently in the spirit of fair play, re-elected the cheater. What happened to “Cheaters never prosper”? When did that get turned into, “Go ahead and cheat. You’ll still win even if you get caught”?
    And we wonder how Bill Clinton and Marion Barry got re-elected… but that’s beside the point.
    The point is, they had an opportunity to correct a mistake and set a NEW precedent, and they didn’t – because they didn’t can’t to open a can of worms.
    1) Cushing never should have been on the ballot for the first vote, seeing that he failed his test in September.
    2) Cushing should not have been on the ballot for the re-vote.
    3) Time to find new voters.

  44. GetOverIt! says: May 13, 2010 9:41 AM

    Awww ….. all that hard work furiously typing out resentment after resentment for nothing!
    Let me call a whaaaambulance for you girls.
    Get over your man-crush on Cushing and get back to reprinting [i]real[/i] sportswriter’s work as usual.
    Cushing earned/owns the award — deal with it.

  45. QJ1984 says: May 13, 2010 10:31 AM

    I think the NFL needs to stop recognizing AP awards and allow the people who actually play the game, coaches and players, choose who gets these awards. I dont agree with that idiot Chris Johnson often but I do agree with him on that. And the writers proved him right. They should have no say in who wins these awards.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!