Sean Glennon might effectively be at the end of his college career. He's going to play against Furman, but beyond that, what can he expect? Frank Beamer didn't pull the redshirt from Tyrod Taylor without great thought, and I figure Beamer intends to use TT heavily for the rest of the season. This might be the end of the line for Glennon ... and one can only hope that it's the end of the line for the bitterness and venom that has often been aimed his way.

I've never seen a player that brings out such irrational emotions from so many fans as Sean Glennon does, except for maybe Grant Noel. Marcus Vick was always in the headlines for all the wrong reasons, but he never drew the fire that Glennon draws. DeAngelo Hall was locker room poison, but he got a free pass at Tech. Ronyell Whitaker talked smack and blew multiple games with bonehead penalties (Pitt 2002) and lackluster play (2001 Gator Bowl), but though he was disliked by parts of the fan base, he didn't get the ire that Glennon draws.

Never mind the emotional message board posts we see, blasting Sean Glennon behind the cloak of anonymity. I get emails, many of them from otherwise dignified men and women in their 40s, 50s and 60s, and the spiteful anger they spew at Glennon should make them feel ashamed.

Just Wednesday, someone emailed me and opined that "in every game that Glennon has quarterbacked for the Hokies, he has proven to be the inferior QB." Every game? Proven? I emailed back links to 7 or 8 games where Glennon was clearly the superior quarterback, some by ridiculous margins (Example: Virginia Tech 27, Georgia Tech 3 ... GT's Taylor Bennett: 11-of-26, 157 yards, 4 INTs, 0 TDs; Sean Glennon: 22-of-32, 296 yards, 0 INTs, 2 passing TDs, 1 rushing TD).

Sean's had his bad games, but "every game"? I couldn't let that email go unanswered, though I ignore most like that.

If I'm going to badmouth a player, I reserve my contempt for those who cheat, smoke dope, steal, get in bar fights, abuse women, organize a dogfighting ring, talk trash, recklessly endanger others or, say, stomp on an opposing player's leg. Those are all contemptible behaviors, some more so than others.

But players who work hard, stay out of trouble and give their all to the program, in the face of unreasonable criticism from parts of the fan base, don't earn my contempt or anger. They earn my respect, and my best wishes for them. And I share their disappointment when the game of football, at which they work so hard and devote so much time, doesn't go well. Because I know how much they put into it, and how much they want to succeed.

Sean Glennon is such a person, to the best of my knowledge. I've never seen a shred of evidence to indicate that he isn't doing everything he can to succeed and play well. Does he put any more effort into his sport than Angela Tincher, who is universally revered, puts into softball? Has Glennon been any less the model student-athlete than Tincher? Of course not. Sean Glennon's only failure has been that he hasn't performed at the same consistently high level as Tincher, who is a statistical freak and arguably the greatest athlete (in his or her sport) to ever don orange and maroon.

If Tincher struck out just one batter an inning, instead of two, and if her career record hovered around .500, no one would know who she is. But she would still be a fine representative of this university.

If Sean Glennon had quarterbacked the Hokies during a couple of undefeated seasons, and maybe a national championship, he would be adored like Tincher. But he would be no more fine a representative of this university than he already is -- just one who was more successful on the playing field.

In a perfect world, Sean Glennon would have thrown three touchdowns and no interceptions against ECU last Saturday. VT would have won comfortably, Tyrod Taylor's jersey would still be red, and Hokie Nation would be buzzing with possibilities. But it didn't unfold that way. Instead, the Hokies lost, and Glennon and the offense didn't play well. Glennon and Bryan Stinespring are under fire, Frank Beamer spent a couple sleepless nights making a difficult decision, and the Hokie football program is at a crossroads.

I assure you, at no point during Saturday's game did Sean Glennon think, "Hmm, I think I'll throw a game-changing pick inside my own 20. That'll teach the haters. Screw 'em."

Instead, I have the utmost confidence that Glennon worked hard, prepared hard and gave it his all. That's all I ever ask of a VT athlete, and Glennon delivered that. He just didn't deliver a win. At the end of the day, though, I'm not going to rage my anger at Sean Glennon. (And if anybody's got a right, I've got the right. Every time Sean plays poorly and the team tanks a game, my work load goes up dramatically.)

But not every Hokie fan is so forgiving. When Glennon trots out on the field Saturday against Furman, I fully expect to hear some boos. That won't be anything new, nor will my consternation at this phenomenon.

Hokie fans like to stick out their chests and talk about being better, and say things like, "We are Virginia Tech" and wear their Hokies United t-shirts. (How ironic is that? Booing Sean Glennon while you sport your Hokies United t-shirt?) But when the rubber hits the road, Virginia Tech fans are like any other fans. Some are classy, some indifferent, some moronic.

If you boo Sean Glennon Saturday, I think it will tell me a lot more about you than it tells me about Sean Glennon. I guess I can be thankful for that. I always like to know where somebody's coming from, and what kind of person they are.

Having said all that, if you feel as I do, that booing a college athlete is reprehensible, then here's a suggestion: When #7 trots on the field Saturday, cheer for him, and make him aware that much more of the Hokie fan base is for him than against him. If you're going to talk the talk, with Hokies United T-shirts and "We are Virginia Tech," then walk the walk. Represent your university the way it's supposed to be represented, and drown out those who don't.

I've said my piece. Make your choice: Are you a Hokie, or not?