Originally Posted by Dagagad
I don't really buy the rest of your post but this is interesting. I would take Cutliffe, Leach and Johnson for any team. These guys have been pretty successful in their respective situations.
Originally Posted by LizardState
btw Leach is one of only four FBS coaches who never played college football at any level (Paul Johnson at Georgia Tech, David Cutcliffe at Duke and George O'Leary at UCF are the others). Remember O'Leary, the ND former HC fired for lying on his resume?
The point I was making is that there is a better than even chance that Leach just doesnt get it when it comes to FB, he has never played it, never even taken a FB Fundamentals class, certainly is unsympathetic to injured players b/c he has never endured that pain himself.
I think he s/b fired so Texas Tech can move on with an actual experienced FB coach instead of some attorney hustler who is making megabucks from his employers resorting to all this smoke & mirrors to distract from the fact that his product on the field is inferior. You would think a lawyer HC would protect them from the obvious liability implications that will almost certainly result in Texas Tech being sued here, but I think his monumental ego won't let him.
Here's Jay Mariotti's article on it:
For Losing His Mind, Leach Earns Ride Out of Lubbock
12/29/2009 4:45 PM ET By Jay Mariotti
If you've wondered why there's an intense focus on concussions, why the NFL finally dumped the medical specialists who said head injuries don't pose long-term health dangers, why NFL players no longer can return to a game if they suffer even the slightest concussion and why one Democrat in Congress has compared this growing crisis to the deception of "tobacco companies pre-1990s'' -- well, America, meet Mike Leach.
As long as creepy thugs such as the Texas Tech football coach exist, no amount of discourse, reform and legislation is enough.
We are hours from the second decade of the 21st century. Sports people should be more medically aware than ever, particularly about matters of the brain. When an athlete sustains a head injury of any sort, a coach should have the educated sensibility to drop all other priorities and concentrate fully on that player's well-being. In the case of Adam James, a redshirt sophomore receiver, Leach reportedly doubted that he had suffered a concussion during a Dec. 16 practice and thought he was just another player disgruntled about playing time. Even though James had been examined a day later and told not to practice after being diagnosed with a concussion and an elevated heart rate, Leach wasn't a caring, compassionate soul about it. Actually, he came off as a warped and sinister ogre when, according to sources who spoke to ESPN and the Associated Press, he told a university trainer to move James into a secluded room -- "to the darkest place, to clean out the equipment and to make sure that he could not sit or lean. He was confined for three hours." If James tried to leave the area, a source told the AP, he would be kicked off the team at once. The Lubbock Avalanche Journal reported that the room was a shed and that Leach forced James to stand in it for two hours during practice.
Sick? Inhumane? We're only beginning down this twisted trail. Two days later, Leach allegedly told a trainer to place James "in the darkest, tightest spot. It was in an electrical closet, again, with a guard posted outside." Know what comes to mind? The movie "Midnight Express," the true story of an American who was tortured for years inside a Turkish prison after trying to smuggle drugs through an airport.
I realize West Texas is far removed from modern civilization, filled with flying dust and tumbleweeds, a place that embraced and revered Bob Knight after he was fired for roughing up young people at Indiana. I also realize Leach is a quirky fellow who avoids conventional thinking and probably belongs on another planet. Still, there is no defense for such a malicious, irresponsible response to a player's medical condition. And while Leach has his side of the story, his lawyer has confirmed that proper medical protocol -- letting doctors handle James' treatment procedures with tender, loving care -- obviously was neglected in ways that boggle the mind.
According to Ted Liggett, Leach's attorney, James embellished the severity of his head injury. Liggett called it a "mild concussion,'' telling the AP, "I believe that [James] was a disgruntled student-athlete that, like many, were not happy with playing time.'' To deal with the "mild concussion,'' Liggett says James "was placed in an equipment room as it was much cooler and darker" than the practice field "after a doctor had examined him and returned him to the field." He was required to spend one to two hours in seclusion, not three, said Liggett, who added that ice was made available to James while a trainer stood guard outside the room. On the later date, Liggett said James was ordered to stay in a "press room with air-conditioning and a stationary bike he could use.''
Oh, and we're supposed to feel better now, assuming the explanation is true in any sense? If anyone should be placed in solitary confinement and wrapped in a straitjacket under lock and key, it's Leach. What a friggin' lunatic.
"Because of the fact that he had a concussion and he was extremely limited in the physical activity he could undergo, Mike felt like that was the best place for him and still be close to and part of the team,'' said Liggett, digging a bigger hole with every syllable.
The question is whether the school will move forward and fire Leach. If Texas Tech has any credibility, he'll be dismissed this week and deemed unfit to be around young men, much less be considered an educator.
Word hasn't reached Leach, evidently, that concussions can kill athletes of all ages. Or cause dementia and other cognitive decline. Or lead people to depression and suicidal thoughts. Since when did Leach become a licensed doctor and determine concussions can be treated in a dark room? Or, worse, who made him God and let him punish a player for supposedly lying about a "mild'' concussion? There is no such thing, he should know, as a "mild'' concussion. The way Leach reacted is the traditional, macho, grunt/snort response that ignores an enlightened ongoing campaign about how head injuries damage athletes later in life. Ask Ted Johnson, the former New England Patriots linebacker, about the quality of his life after he was pressured to keep playing with mutiple concussions. Still in his 30s, he is fighting emotional issues, can't remember simple thoughts and worries he'll become a mental vegetable in a few years. There are hundreds of ex-players just like Johnson, as NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell finally is acknowledging. If Leach did have a medical degree, it would be stripped at once on the grounds that he's a quack. The school immediately suspended him, banned him from coaching in Saturday's Alamo Bowl in San Antonio and launched an internal investigation.
"We obviously think the allegations are very serious," Jerry Turner, vice chairman of the Texas Tech Board of Regents, told the Dallas Morning News.
The question is whether the school will move forward and fire Leach. If Texas Tech has any credibility, he'll be dismissed this week and deemed unfit to be around young men, much less be considered an educator. James' story becomes more credible upon learning his father is Craig James, the former SMU and Patriots star, who now works as an ESPN analyst. The elder James was supposed to work the Alamo Bowl for the network. Not anymore -- not when he's rightfully trying to bring down Leach.
In a statement, the James family said their son has "been subjected to actions and treatment not consistent with common sense rules for safety and health. Over the past year, there has been a greatly enhanced recognition of the dangers of concussions and the potential for long term physical damage to players. At virtually every level of football coaching, cases where children and young men have sustained concussions have generated serious discussion of the importance of correct treatment and diagnosis." They decided to go public with the story after careful deliberation and prayer, the statement said.
I've covered Craig James' football career and know what he stands for. I don't believe for an instant that his son is a crybaby hypochondriac seeking more playing time. To the contrary, James is a concerned father who was brave enough to expose Leach's medieval tactics. After briefly crashing the national-championship picture last season, with ABC venturing to Lubbock for consecutive prime-time telecasts on Saturday nights, Texas Tech has struggled through an 8-4 season. Leach has been especially nutty, ripping his players for being too close to "their fat little girlfriends'' after an October loss to Texas A&M. He suspended a starting offensive lineman for violating unspecified team rules and banned the Twitter craze after a linebacker, Marion Williams, Tweeted about why the players were in a meeting room when "the head coach can't even be on time.''
It should surprise no one that Leach will use the legal process in an attempt to coach the Red Raiders in the bowl game. Last winter, attorneys were all over the place during his contract dispute with Texas Tech, which eventually was settled when he signed a five-year, $12.7 million deal. He likely won't be seeing the final four years of that pact. If there's any justice, he'll won't be seeing the Alamodome sideline, either. "We're going to do everything we can to see that our client is duly served justice and that he's reunited with his boys as soon as possible,'' Liggett said.
His boys? If that's how Leach treats his boys, I don't know how he'll enter a living room and recruit a 17-year-old. "Coach,'' a mom will ask, 'what if my Tommy gets a concussion. You gonna lock him up in solitary confinement? Let insects crawl over him?' '' There is no way Leach survives this. He needs a new profession, a new perspective on life.
"There's much, much more than meets the eye,'' Liggett argued in the Lubbock newspaper. "The diagnosing doctor has signed a note stating that Adam James was in no way injured by the actions coach Leach took. In fact, he was better off in the building than he would have been outside.''
What, Fred Flintstone's cave wasn't available?
With that, we'll say goodbye to Leach, just as we said goodbye weeks ago to another college coach accused of abusing his players, Mark Mangino. The more we can make potent statements about the dangers of concussions, the safer a violent game will be. Not long ago, an AP survey showed that one-fifth of 160 polled NFL players said they've either downplayed or haven't reported a concussion and its symptoms.
The pro player I worry about most is Ben Roethlisberger, the Pittsburgh quarterback and two-time Super Bowl champion, who has shrugged off four concussions as if they were pimples. Even after his most recent concussion a few weeks ago, Roethlisberger doubted that players would be "completely honest'' about head injuries.
This came after his teammate, noted tough-guy Hines Ward, applied pressure publicly for Roethlisberger to play in a Nov. 29 game at Baltimore in which he was ruled out.
"All of us want to be fathers and husbands someday. In that sense, I think it's good," Roethlisberger said of concussion awareness. "I think it does run the risk that we are tough guys, we want to play through things, and I think guys will not be completely honest for fear that they can't get back in the game. I think it's kind of a double-edged sword."
No, the sword has one edge. And it can be fatal, sooner or later, only exacerbated by the presence of too many cruel and disturbed coaches.