by Mike Worley
I think our country is in real trouble. Most clergy have their views dealing with morality and such. But I wonder if a good indicator isn't the state of athletics in our country. To preface my remarks, normally I would find myself on the side of the athlete, student or otherwise, having taken my own share of abuse and crap from one of my high school coaches. But I find myself having to believe that Mark Mangino got hosed by the University of Kansas, and Mike Leach flat out got screwed by Texas Tech University. I drew this a long time ago, probably after the "60 Minutes" piece of Mike Leach...
I like Leach. He is the antithesis of a "big school" university football coach. And in reality, he doesn't even begin to fit into the "good ol' boy" mold that stinks up the coaching ranks. Leach looks like a slob. I can relate. He likes a wide open offensive attack to score points...(that's how you win the game, by outscoring your opponent! Duh!!!) He wanted compensated for his efforts, which probably didn't sit well with the "good ol' Texas boy" higher ups at TTU. Maybe Leach never quite understood where TTU is in the scheme of things in Texas football...TTU is the ugly, red-headed stepsister with the wooden leg compared to UT and A&M. Kinda win, but remember your place. Which brings me to Adam James.
UT football has a bright future. That Gilbert kid showed a lot of great promise. And it would be really great if he could have a "rematch" in 3 years with Alabama to extract some vengeance. One of the sport announcers made a comment to put it in perspective, that basically the caliber of player he is means he is going to be at a "Texas" type program. You could fill in there even "Ohio State," "Oklahoma," "Florida," "USC," or even "Alabama." Those programs have a lot of money, booster support, better facilities, and an expectation for winning. They get the high caliber of prospective candidates. With their resources, they don't stay down for long. There is a reason Adam James is at TTU. Simply put, if he were a higher ranked, more talented athlete, more coveted athletic talent, he'd be at UT. Coaches like Leach, Bill Snyder, Mangino, and even Spurrier at South Carolina, have to be more cunning, resourceful, and do all they can to get the most out of the athletes they have to compete on the same stage as their more money'd counterparts and competition.
No one has asked the question why Leach, the head coach, would be involved with any type of alleged discipline on a player? Why wasn't James being handled by his position coach? Or offensive coordinator? Or assistant head coach? Answer: they probably couldn't do anything with him IMHO. Couple in meddlin' from "daddy James," and it becomes a real headache. At worst, Leach took an attitude problem and put him "time out." Wow! A 19/20 yr. old in "time out???!!!" Then comes the claims that Leach yelled and "verbally abused" him at practice. A football coach chewing a player's ass...now there is a novel concept!(he said sarcastically) And the same university hired Bobby Knight? All in all, sounds more like they just didn't want to pay Leach his bonus money. And I used to think Tommy Tuberville had more sense after the weinie job he was under at Auburn. But, no. (Note to Tommy: Watch your back. They'll screw you, too)
I started this one of Mark Mangino, and have toyed with finishing it but may not. Kinda pointless. I like Mangino, but loathe KU. He, like Leach, ain't yer "good ol' boy" lookin' svelte with a button-down polo shirt and golf visor. Not a pretty boy like Stoops, Saban, or Meyer. He's more like a "Jabba the coach." Anyway, here's what I had sketched out...
"He yelled at me and poked me," according to the pampered player to the all-to-eager-to-fester-a-story media. Uhhh...he's a football coach. They yell. I guess no one informed the pansies coming out of high school that college coaches yell, and will chew your butt. So I should feel scarred by my high school coaches for the "bell ringer"(that's when you've done something really stupid and the purple faced coach has grabbed you by the facemask to pull your face closer to his, because you obviously couldn't hear him. And sometime he would shake your helmet like a bell to make sure you were paying attention while he is giving instruction on how you can remove your head from your anal orifice, or words to that effect.) "He would say really mean things" whined the wimpering girly-men. My jv coach, after we were putting in less than a stellar effort at practice and doing drills like completely uncoordinated candyasses got us together to scream at us that if he'd cut our heads open, little pussies would fly out. The worst from the media were the douchebags who played the "weight" card...since Mangino was dietitically challenged, he must have anger issues. What a crock!
I watched a You Tube clip of Mangino ripping a player after a touchdown. Why? Because instead of running the ball into the endzone, the "athlete" in question performed for the camera and got an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, hampering the kickoff team's and defensive unit's chances of keeping the opponent on their heels. Instead of thinking of the team, this player wanted his "ESPN" highlight moment. Which is why our country is in trouble...too much "me, me, me,...look at me!"
More than likely, Mangino didn't understand that KU is a "basketball" school, and as such, he would never be as revered or on the same level as Bill "plays with" Self. Which is why over-rated KU basketball, instead of trouncing Tennessee who had kicked off a bunch of their starters for criminal acts, got embarrassed by losing. But, at least with basketball, they tourney for a winner of the "national championship," instead of football with the BSC and antiquated bowl system. And it's fun to watch KU basketball fans after KU chokes. The only thing more loathsome than KU basketball fans to me are Nebraska football fans. But that's another post.
Maybe I should do caricatures of all the coaches I DON'T like. Bo Pelini and Bob Stoops, BEWARE!!!