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Posted at 12:24 PM ET, 05/11/2012

T.O. is not a guy who will be down for long

I saw T.O. on Dr. Phil with the mothers of some of his children. It’s clear he’s not perfect and seems to be paying the price--literally and figuratively--for some of his lapses in judgment. He discussed spending close to $80 million dollars and now finding himself in financial trouble so deep that he can’t keep up with his child support payments.

Same old story: Athlete makes a ton of money, then blows it all and somehow becomes the victim of his own circumstances. The sad reality is that this storyline does play out that way too often.

There’s no way I can justify spending that much money and it’s not going to bring any of it back, but what I can say is this: Don’t count on Terrell Owens to stay broke. That won’t last long.

Through football I’ve met some very influential people and have stayed in contact with them out of mutual admiration and respect. My life has been enriched by these relationships and I continue to reap the benefits. I’m able to grow my brand through opportunities such as writing for the Washington Post and other endeavors.

When I was drafted and came to the most powerful place in the U.S., it became clear to me that it was first about who you know, before what you know. I have always made sure to respect these rules of engagement.

Owens knows everybody and his connections will overcome his lack of money. Broke or not, just like Mike Tyson, T.O. has created a brand that people want to be connected to. In additiont to the interest that T.O and his children’s mothers generated, Dr. Phil also wants the credit of being the guy who helped advise Owens and get him back on track. That enhances his credibility. And Dr. Phil knows Owens has the potential to do great things in the future. I’m sure he knows that sometimes the best way to build a relationship with a wildly popular person is to do it when he is at his lowest point.

You don’t think people were clamoring to help Mike Tyson when he was at rock bottom? They were, because he was a strong enough brand to invest in and potentially benefit from. This happens all the time. How about Robert Downey Jr. or Charlie Sheen? Talk about your fixer uppers. For one reason or another, people rush to help wounded, suffering megastars--whether they know them personally or not.

T.O. is a megastar and he’s not dumb. He has created a persona that people either love or hate, but is undeniably powerful. His brand and his connections will benefit him. The people who jump on board to help will do so knowing his success stands to benefit them. I assume that will put T.O. back at the financial level he once enjoyed, or at least close.

I have played against T.O. and he was an intense competitor. I don’t know him very well, but what I do know is he’s a bright person and one of the most provocative personalities in sports. He created that. He is still very much a relevant personality; he’s not on television just to be embarrassed by his baby mamas. This man has a plan.

If I were a betting man I would bet on him to remain in the media and entertainment. The reality is that we are always entertained by T.O.

Hopefully he has learned from his mistakes and when he’s back on his feet, he will make the most of his opportunities this time around.

By  |  12:24 PM ET, 05/11/2012

 
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