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Opening Arguments

Oklahoma tirade

Everyone is talking about the tirade by the Oklahoma coach who went off for several minutes on a female sports columnist for the local paper for "downgrading" one of his players. The video is all over the place. It seems awfully contrived and stagy to me, and it certainly kept everybody from talking about, you know, football. The coach's record ain't that good, and he may have a touch of Bobby Knight Syndrome.

But you decide. Here's his rant on YouTube:


And here's the column in question. (You may get to see it once before you are asked to fill out a free registration form, or you may not.) Overall, it seems like pretty fair criticism of the football player. This is the essential paragraph, which comes almost at the end:

Reid is the most talented quarterback in Payne County, but he hasn't proven that he's the toughest. If you listen to the rumblings and the rumors, Cowboy coaches simply grew weary of it.

It's hard to judge the "accuracy" of what is essentially an opinion column, especially when insiders are quoted but not named. And she builds her case for Reid's lack of drive and determination around a single anecdote. He was seen being fed chicken by his mother after the game, in public -- something that would make most college students, especially big, tough football players, die from embarrassment. Whether the column is a cheap hit job or an honest effort at criticism depends largely on whether that scene as described is accurate. And the columnist does not say if she witnessed it herself or if it was merely told to her.

All in all, an amusing diversion.