Herb Pope is a tough kid

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I’m not going to tell you that you should root for Herb Pope. Not after the multiple, below-the-belt sucker punches he threw at a Texas Tech big man in last year’s NIT.

But before you make the decision to hate him, I urge you to read this article from SNY’s Adam Zagoria. If that’s too much, how about just this block quote:

On
his left arm is a foot-long scar, evidence of the night in March 2007
he used his forearm to block five gunshots — four at close range —
directed at him during a party in his hometown of Aliquippa, Pa.

Or this one:

Neither
of Pope’s parents is involved in his life. Both spent time in jail and
as a child he moved around, living with relatives and in foster homes
before his aunt, Amy Pope-Smith, took him in during the tenth grade. He
reportedly made peace with his father after the collapse, meeting with
Herbert Pope in the Beaver County (Pa.) Jail.

And definitely read this one:

Pope
has another scar across his chest from his latest brush with death, the
one that required heart surgery to deal with a birth defect — an
anomalous right coronary artery — that Seton Hall head coach Kevin
Willard said they “usually only find in an autopsy.”

“To me, I
really don’t see a problem with it,” Pope said. “Obviously, it being a
birth defect, it’s kind of like it was going to happen at some point.
And I can talk about it so it doesn’t bother me. Some people that it
happened to, they’re not here to talk about it.”

Pope may
not be the easiest guy to like. But before you hate him, understand
where he is coming from and what he has been through.

Its easy to criticize without having lived his life.