When the Seahawks first drafted him about a month ago, I didn’t think I’d like him that much. The dude had single-handedly destroyed the Huskies over the years (with a little help from Casey Clausen’s kid brother, I suppose), and because I’d heard so much about him in the media during his time at Notre Dame, he almost had that prima donna reputation that can a follow a talented young player around. Call it the Tebow Effect, or something along those lines.
In the weeks since he officially became a Seahawk, Tate has done quite a bit to earn my respect.
First off, he’s been attending organized team activities (OTAs) despite not having a signed a contract yet. That takes guts. It’s like working for free, with no insurance policy, no safety net, nothing. Every fan should be applauding that move.
Second, early reports from camp on Tate have all been favorable. The consensus opinion is that the Seahawks got a steal in the second round with the former Fighting Irish wideout. And that pleases me. Because the Hawks don’t really have anyone on their roster that has proven to be a true No. 1 receiver in the NFL. But Tate, by all indications, could be just that.
More than anything else, however, the thing that has endeared me to Tate most of all is his penchant for doughnuts, which in turn has led him to a life of crime. Seriously.
For those of you who haven’t heard about “Donutgate,” here are the details:
- In the wee hours of Saturday morning (June 5th), Tate and a friend arrived home at Tate’s Bellevue apartment when they caught the aroma of doughnuts baking in a Top Pot doughnut shop that happens to be located in the same building where Tate lives.
- Acting on impulse (more or less), Tate and his friend entered the bakery of the Top Pot doughnut shop through a back door that was unlocked.
- Tate and his friend then entered the bakery and proceeded to nibble on a freshly prepared maple bar or two.
- Shortly thereafter, an employee entered the bakery after having been in the bathroom, spotted Tate and his friend eating maple bars in the shop, and called the police.
- Tate and his friend left the shop after being confronted by the employee.
- Later Saturday morning, Tate was served at his residence with a warning for trespassing.
- Top Pot doughnuts neglected to press charges or pursue any further action against Tate or his friend.
Everything about this story is perfect. Okay, so the ethics aren’t quite there, but come on. Who wouldn’t want to eat a freshly baked doughnut at roughly 3:00 in the morning? Please. Don’t blame the guy for being human.
And think about this from Top Pot’s perspective. You more or less gave a dude five or six bucks worth of maple bars for loads of free publicity. These guys would have had to pay thousands and thousands of dollars to hear their name dropped like this on any ordinary day. They should be inking Tate to an endorsement deal right now. Best advertisement ever.
To top it all off, Tate came out today and humbly apologized for his actions over the weekend. While everyone else (including Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll) has been having fun with Tate’s criminal act, Tate himself remained very contrite when discussing what occurred on that fateful (and illegal) doughnut run.
I would have gone with the standard glazed cake doughnut, but I like Tate’s style. And if nothing else, the guy has earned himself a new nickname: Maple Bar Tate.