Everyone should have a father like Ray Small's dad, Ken. Not only can Ray, Ohio State's enigmatic wide receiver and return man, do no wrong in his father's eyes, the elder Small is more than willing to call out Buckeyes coach Jim Tressel for what he alleges is unfair treatment.
It seems Tressel and his assistant coaches operate under the misguided notion that college football players - in return for athletic scholarships - should get themselves to class.
And, hey, as long as you're going, how about getting there on time?
On the field, Ray Small is one of the fastest Buckeyes. But he seems unable to get from his living quarters to the classroom - or a football meeting room - at the appointed time.
As a result, Small has been in and out of Tressel's doghouse for the better part of the last two years. This spring, Small's coveted No. 4 jersey was taken away from him after an unspecified transgression, and he was assigned No. 82. Small also saw his playing time diminish after a hot start this season.
Aside from the final drives against Wisconsin and Penn State, Small has been an afterthought in Ohio State's offense. On Thursday, Tressel announced Small was suspended for at least one game - Saturday's visit to Northwestern - but could return after that depending on his behavior moving forward.
Ken Small seems to believe his son's Ohio State career is finished. The father indicated Ray Small might turn pro or transfer to a Football Championship Subdivision program for his senior season.
''They're intentionally trying to blow his career,'' Ken Small told The Associated Press.
No, Ray Small has been trying to blow his own career.
And his father has now jumped on board to help.
According to reports, Ken Small moved to a Columbus suburb this year to be closer to his son. Maybe he should have dragged Ray to class or to team meetings if he was so concerned about his son.
Ken Small compared his son's transgressions - which also include parking tickets - to the legal problems of teammate Doug Worthington (DUI) and then-teammate Antonio Henton (solicitation).
''He had a couple of incidents, but he never got caught smoking marijuana before the national championship game. Or he never got a DUI, or picked up a prostitute. He was just late,'' Ken Small said. ''And the punishment is you can't even go into the (practice) facility? They act like he's dangerous. These other kids ... didn't get banned from the facility. All they got was being sat down for the first few plays of a game.''
Why didn't my dad make a similar case for me when, with just a few weeks left for the Class of 1985, a bunch of us skipped school on a Friday to attend a taping of ''The Big Chuck and Lil' John Show'' and were summoned to the principal's office on Monday morning?
(Yeah, I know. We were wild and crazy kids back then.)
One good thing about those days is that parents didn't just automatically believe the baloney kids fed them about what happened in school. Parents were our parents then, not our friends and our enablers.
If you got into trouble at school then, you could expect even more when you got home.
If Ken Small thinks his son has it tough playing for Tressel, he should ask some old-time Buckeyes what it was like to play for Earle Bruce or Woody Hayes.
But times are different now. Another college coach told me parents routinely call or visit his office to complain about their sons' playing time.
Are you kidding me?
Sadly, he was not.