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UCLA QB Josh Rosen Is An Outspoken, Faux-Controversial Kid. And That’s Alright.

UCLA v USC Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

So, first, read this —>

And yup, now you’ve got the full Josh Rosen story. The reason this is any kind of story is that Rosen is the real deal: One of the best arms in the nation, listed as the #1 pick in the 2018 NFL Mock Draft...the signalcaller for a big-name program that might be really good at football this year. He’s got a big platform (and he knows it).

Some of Rosen’s greatest hits: Anti-Trump apparel worn on a Trump golf course, loving Bernie Sanders (or at least thinking the #feelthebern movement was humorous in a way), obvious distaste with the NCAA’s treatment of amateur athletes, numerous social media missteps, picking UCLA because he likes messing with people who think top recruits should go to USC, advocating a socialist-type sharing aspect to his possible NFL salary...And probably most surprisingly, the “shrugs?” attitude he takes when he’s asked to apologize for being outspoken.

This type of profile is pretty rare for the Rosen’s of the world. He’s sitting on a gold-mine, one that many athletes protect with safe, bland answers about “teamwork” and “one step at a time” and other cliches. Don’t take stands or even actually hold opinions that may compromise your career or marketing opportunities. But Josh Rosen doesn’t care, which is a testament to a) his acknowledged immaturity, b) the situation he was raised in, and c) his confidence and devil-may-care viewpoint on social media and life.

So, Point #1: This was much more entertaining than most college athlete profiles. He talks, or at least social media emotes, about his political views. He cusses, like most of us. He’s honest about past struggles and talks openly about current ones. He runs his own Instagram account. He comes off like a real person.

Point #2: He’s a kid. He’s 19 years old, driving a scooter around UCLA, drinking cheap beer and lining the bottles on the wall, buying an inflatable hot tub and using a 20 foot beer bong for a hose. So when he attacks the NCAA, and the coach says he’s got to apologize, he doesn’t realize (or care) that he’s bumping up against a billion dollar behemoth that doesn’t want to hear about how their keeping the man down...or that Coca-Cola is watching to see whether he will be endorsement material when he signs with the Cowboys in 2018.

Point #3: Many people are going to read the Thamel piece and say “typical SAE” or “he sounds like a little shit!” Alright. But whether it’s the immaturity or the lack of filter on politics, the profile shows a real person, a kid figuring out his personality and how to express it in real time.