Lance Armstrong is a cheater

Matthew Trebby

I believed in Lance Armstrong. You believed in Lance Armstrong. Hell, a large majority of the sports-watching world believed in him.

On Thursday night, we will all witness the former seven-time Tour De France champion admit he fooled us. Armstrong will forever be known as nothing but a fraud, as he should be.

We all thought we were witnessing one of the most feel-good stories sports has ever seen. The guy was on his deathbed, falling victim to cancer.

As remarkable as his comeback was, now it is going to be forgotten. All the people who looked up to him will have to find a new role model.

It was a hell of a cover-up, too. Only Pete Rose was able to maintain a lie as famous as Armstrong’s.

Rose admitted he bet on baseball because he knew he couldn’t continue living a lie and be in the Hall of Fame at the same time. He told the truth, finally, just because he thought it would beneficial for his career. I doubt he liked living a lie and telling everyone he didn’t gamble while he was the manager of the Cincinnati Reds.

Armstrong has no choice but to admit to lying. When he was stripped of his Tour De France titles it was evident we all had been had. If that never happened, who knows when Armstrong was going to come clean? Would he ever?

We all were in awe of everything he did. It was amazing how someone who could survive what Armstrong did could not only compete at a professional level again but flourish.

Michael LoCicero, who has since graduated, wrote a column in the Tribune last semester about how Armstrong should still be considered an American hero.

To me, that’s ridiculous. While Michael’s opinion has hopefully changed with Armstrong’s inevitable admission, “hero” is a term that I use very rarely. A hero to me is someone who earned what they achieved, and while Armstrong did fight and defeat cancer, the way he went about achieving his success in his sport is not the stuff of a hero.

He might have raised awareness of cancer and done many great things because of his success, but the way Armstrong went about it is wrong.

Now, he is no longer an American hero and also is, frankly, a cheater. All the good he has done in the world was built on a lie. All the success he attained in cycling was in large part because he took performance-enhancing drugs.

You can form your own opinions of Armstrong, but I really don’t think much thought needs to go into the process. Armstrong cheated and is nothing remotely close to a hero.