Ben Roethlisberger

Mar 9, 2010 7:03 AM

It is almost spring, and we already are well into the seasonal rutting season.

God’s animals, large and small, are heeding the mating call, as their hormones rise sky high.

That includes lions and particularly Tigers, and the powerful beasts of the National Football League.

Before the calendar even turns to spring officially, they are snorting like bulls, and seeking out lovely heifers who might accept their favors.

Except that some of the latter have second thoughts, either before or after the fact, and the big brutes who looked so strong and handsome under the glow of fluorescent bar lights take on a totally different hue under the garish light of day.

The latest to feel the lash of their fury is Ben Roethlisberger, sterling quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, who is being investigated for an alleged case of sexual assault after an incident in one of the most unlikely spots on the football map: not in the glare of the bright lights of Atlanta, but 85 miles away, in a nightclub bar in the little town of Milledgeville, Georgia. It becomes more likely when one considers that Roethlisberger reportedly owns a home nearby. The local chief of police says, in perfect chief of police language, that the Steelers’ big guy "has been identified as being at the scene and there are allegations naming him as the perpetrator."

These incidents are never funny, however, and the woman involved in this case was taken to a hospital, treated and released.

Also of note is that this is not the first time Big John has been in this kind of trouble.

Two years ago a lady – we assume she is a lady – accused Roethlisberger of raping her in a hotel in Lake Tahoe, California. No comment on that case, but Roethlisberger’s agent says of the latest matter that the Steeler quarterback is cooperating with authorities and "is skeptical of the motive" of the accusation.

We’re not sure what that means – we suppose it means money may have been involved, or perhaps consent, and it is not unreasonable to suspect that some willing women may find big name performers easy targets. That seems less likely, however, when the woman checks into a hospital and is treated before being released.

Whatever the case, Roethlisberger and the Tiger take back seats on the high hormonal scale to cornerback Antonio Cromartie, traded to the Jets by San Diego.

Cromartie, the New York Times reported, has been the target of multiple paternity suits – he is the father of seven children in five states. The Times says Cromartie once acknowledged this "distracted him" in San Diego. Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum said the Jets had researched Cromartie and felt confident they could help him both on and off the field. The first thing they should do is tell him about a great new invention: condoms.

While the guys have been getting headlines for their activities off the field – using the term loosely – a young lady playing basketball for Baylor university has garnered her own on the court.

Brittney Griner, 19 years old and 6-feet 8 inches tall, has been commanding attention for her dominant play at Baylor university. Last week she commanded more, when after being elbowed by Texas Tech forward Jordan Barncastle, she turned and punched Barncastle in the nose, breaking it and clearing both team’s benches.

When you’re a young girl and 6-feet-8, there should be no worry about being assaulted. Let the guys in and out of the NBA be forewarned.