Errick Miron, formerly known as Ricky Williams, is no stranger to controversy. The former Texas football star and NFL running back was the subject of relentless criticism during his playing days for failed drug tests and subsequent suspensions. The experience appears to have given him an interesting perspective on another embattled athlete.
While appearing on The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz on Thursday, Miron called for empathy when addressing Grizzlies star Ja Morant and the drama that has surrounded him in recent months. Miron specifically mentioned the recent welfare check from police after Morant shared several cryptic posts on social media.
“Checking on someone’s mental health is not waiting until the mental health has gotten to the place where you’re afraid,” Miron said. “Checking on someone’s mental health is caring about what’s going on inside of them. And I think through this whole process with Ja Morant, no one’s really cared. All they’ve cared about is that he’s breaking rules or not on the court.
“The unfortunate thing about most athletes, is people don’t care unless it’s interfering with their ability to compete,” Miron continued. “And that, in itself, is not good for our soul. When the only value that people see from us is what we can contribute to their entertainment and they don’t really care about who’s on the inside.”
Morant has been involved with several off-the-court incidents over the past year and is currently being investigated by the NBA for flashing a gun while on Instagram Live. Morant was suspended for eight games during the 2022–23 season for a similar incident.
“When someone puts on a jersey, they’re no longer a human being any more. I don’t think that’s good for athletes, because it alienates them from themselves,” Miron said in regard to how he believes fans view athletes.
Miron was suspended on two different occasions while playing in the NFL for failed drug tests. He won the 1998 Heisman Trophy for the Longhorns and led the NFL with 1,853 rushing yards while playing for the Dolphins in 2002. He totaled 10,009 rushing yards over the course of his 11-year NFL career.