Krystina Ramey was born and raised in the Appalachian Mountains in the great state of Tennessee. An athlete since the age of 4, Krystina has always had a passion for sports. Her love for broadcasting, however, didn’t come until later on in life. In fact, Krystina graduated from East Tennessee State University in 2009 with a degree in Graphic Design. It wasn’t until she pursued an internship with a radio station in West Palm Beach, FL that she knew she wanted a career in radio.
After interning for a year in Florida, Krystina decided it was time to move on to bigger and better things. She packed everything she could fit into her 2-door hatchback and drove to California to start a new life. She is ecstatic to have the opportunity to work with Fox Sports and sees big things in her future.
While Krystina spends most of her time aimlessly trying to convert Californians into lovers of the Southeastern Conference or the Atlanta Braves, she is slowly but surely developing a passion for sports in Southern Cali. When she’s not watching the game, you can find her jamming out to music – her life’s 2nd passion – or outside doing something active. She also loves shopping, traveling, and – of course – playing sports.
News broke this past week that former NFL player Vince Young got the opportunity to showcase his talents for a number of NFL teams and scouts at the University of Texas’ pro day in Austin. It seems the quarterback is eyeing a comeback, and is taking advantage of his schooling with the Longhorns to get his name back into the mix (Young is currently enrolled and working towards finishing his degree). When I heard the news of this, only one word came to my mind: “Finally.”
Well, actually three things came to my mind… “Inevitable” and “It’s only a matter of time” also made it in there.
For 7 wonderful years, I had the great fortune of watching this promising college quarterback grow into a record-breaking NFL athlete on my hometown team. As of late, however, I’ve pretty much given up on trying to vouch for my favorite football player in public. I’ve never lost any faith – there’s no doubt about that. But it seems everywhere I turn, I am constantly gaining opposition for my love of this talented sportsman. Vince Young, the former Tennessee Titan and two-time Pro Bowler, is – and always has been – a prototypical athlete. This QB didn’t simply shine at the U of Texas; he did the same in Nashville and still today possesses the talent needed to carry an NFL team. Now, you may have your opinions, but the facts speak for themselves. Give the man a chance, and he’s sure to put up a few W’s.
Let’s begin with the 2006 Rose Bowl, when Young put on one of the most dominating individual performances in college football history. During his third year with the Texas Longhorns, VY led his team to a 41-38 victory over the USC Trojans and was named Rose Bowl MVP for the second year in a row. During that game, Young managed to accumulate a total of 467 offensive yards – 200 rushing, 267 passing – with 3 rushing touchdowns. Young’s performance that night was nothing short of magic – I mean, the kid single-handedly beat the USC Trojans. If it hadn’t been for his 9-yard TD scramble on 4th down with 19 seconds left in the game, the Longhorns may not have had much to celebrate that night. In fact, if it hadn’t been for Young, the Longhorns may not have any championship titles at all. Until he took command of the team, Texas had never even been to a Rose Bowl. And dare I mention that, in the 2005 championship game, every touchdown scored for Texas was the result of a Vince Young rush, save one? Let’s be honest: two-time Rose Bowl MVP is a great accomplishment, but I still have yet to be able to understand why Young was repeatedly snubbed for the Heisman. That honor, instead, went to Reggie Bush in 2006. And where is that trophy now? Oh, yea…
Hot off of his Rose Bowl victory, Young was picked 3rd overall in the 2006 NFL draft and quickly made a name for himself in Tennessee. The former Longhorn made his NFL debut on August 12, with his first career start on October 1 and first NFL victory on October 15. On November 26, 2006, Young led his first NFL 4th-quarter comeback against the New York Giants. After beginning the quarter down 21-0, VY successfully completed 3 scoring drives, followed by a game-winning field goal kick that clinched the 24-21 victory for the Titans. It was statistically the best performance of Young’s NFL career, going 24 for 35 with 249 yards and 2 touchdowns, plus rushing 10 times for 69 yards and 1 touchdown. Throughout the remainder of the season, Young led his team to 3 more come-from-behind victories, proving his prowess on the field. It was the only time in NFL history that a rookie quarterback had led multiple 14+ point comebacks in the same season. Young finished his rookie season with a record of 8-5 including 6 straight wins, was chosen as the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year (only the 3rd quarterback to ever win the award), and was named to the 2007 Pro Bowl. He still holds the NFL record for the most rushing yards by a rookie quarterback with 552.
During his 2007 season, Young continued to shatter records week after week. He finished the year with 2,597 passing yards, including 9 touchdowns, and 407 rushing yards with 3 touchdowns.
Young’s addition to the Titans lineup served as a breath of fresh air for us Tennesseans. Sure, I rooted for my home team, but it wasn’t until this Houston native showed up that I actually cared to watch the games. VY brought our team hope, and gave this southern state a renewed feeling of inspiration. He gave us something to be excited about.
But many people tend to forget how great of a player Young is.
In 2008, the quarterback suffered an injury that opened the door for backup QB Kerry Collins to finish out the remainder of the season. Pair this with Young’s “depression” issues and coach Jeff Fisher’s decision to keep Collins at QB to begin the 2009 season, and you have what many people believe to be the end of Young’s career. But for those of us who didn’t give up on VY, it soon became clear that this QB wasn’t quite yet ready to hang it up. After Collins and the Titans began the 2009 season 0-6, Titans owner Bud Adams urged Fisher to get Young off the bench. Fisher grudgingly agreed, even publicly stating that he’d rather leave Collins in the position. Nonetheless, Young started as quarterback on November 1, 2009. In the weeks that followed, the Titans made what became one of the most amazing comebacks by any football team in NFL history. Young successfully led his team to win their first 7 games after his return as QB, including 8 of the Titans’ final 10. This was the first time in NFL history that a team had won more than 5 straight games after losing their first 6. Young was nominated for the 2009 NFL Comeback Player of the Year, and played in the 2010 Pro Bowl. During his career with the Titans, Young started in 47 games and won 30 of those contests.
Come on people, we can’t forget this.
Sure, the QB had a little scuffle with his coach in 2010. But I think we all know Coach Fisher never really cared for Young… which might explain why he told the cops VY was planning to kill himself in 2008, when the man really just needed some time to himself. Now I don’t doubt that Young suffered from depression, but suicide? Come on, Fisher. When the media blew this scenario out of proportion, it seemed everyone turned their back on VY. I honestly can’t go anywhere and praise the man without receiving some sort of backlash. Vince Young isn’t “crazy,” and his career is far from over. All Young needs is to be given a chance – the chance Jeff Fisher never wanted to give him. I don’t know about you, but if I had that kind of record-breaker on my team, I’d have him in the game. Check your ego at the door.
I know some may say, “Vince never did anything in Philadelphia.” Well, you’re partially right – Vince didn’t show much in Philadelphia. But Young never got a true opportunity to be the leader of the team playing in Michael Vick’s shadow. Sure, Vick was hurt here and there, but when was VY ever shown the confidence or the backing to take control of the ship? Everyone knew he was just a fill in. When did he ever get the opportunity to gel with the team, settle into the head role and lead the Eagles in the way in which he wanted to lead?
He didn’t, and that’s why I repeat the same sentiment that I stated in the beginning: Give the man a chance.
As Young has proven time and time again, when you give the man the reigns, he knows how to steer the ship. He’s a talented football player, and his arm is still strong as ever. It’s unfortunate that Fisher and the Tennessee debacles did so much to damage his reputation, because it kept many NFL teams from taking a chance on him. But as Texas coach Mack Brown stated to the press from Longhorns pro day, “He's better than a whole lot of people playing out there.”
I have no doubt in my mind that Vince Young will once again make an NFL roster and lead a team to greatness.
That is, if he’s given a chance…
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