Saturday, May 24, 2008

I'm not sayin', I'm just sayin'

Auburn's head football coach, as I'm sure virtually every reader of this blog is aware, is currently enjoying a six-day tour visiting the members of our Armed Forces in the Middle East.

There are fewer than 100 days until the start of the 2008 season. 2009 recruiting is in full swing. Why is our head football coach spending a week halfway around the world?

Partly to honor his father. Partly because, as he tells Scarbinsky, he's "gotta get away from it," meaning the coaching grind. Mostly because, I think, they asked and Tubby--for all the less-than-nice things I have occasionally said about him--is generally, as they say, Good People. All of these reasons kick ass.

I doubt very much that every Division 1 head football coach would have accepted the offer. "I think a few people said no," Tubby told Scarbinsky, and given the timing and length of commitment to the tour, that doesn't surprise me. Taking the pressures of coaching at this level into consideration, I can't say I blame them too terribly much.

But: for obvious reasons it remains an unapologetic point of pride for me that Auburn's head football coach did say Yes. For equally obvious reasons--namely, that I openly despise the man--I have to wonder: would our state's resident Coachbot, the sort of man who has come to embody the polar opposite of "getting away from it," have said the same?

It's quite possible, maybe even likely, he would have. It's not like Saban doesn't have a charitable background. It's not as if he hasn't been willing to make appearances for good causes and been gregarious and engaging in doing so. Scarbinsky suggests Tubby's "people said no" quote may have been in jest and besides, it's not like we have any idea who got asked and who didn't. This (as far as Google can tell me) is the first year of the program, so maybe in 2008 it's Auburn's guy, in 2009's it's 'Bama's--and if Saban does go over next year, this blog will be more than happy to give him his due credit.

However: boil down Tubby's and Saban's respective offseasons into a single lingering image, and Tubby's will very likely be the one sent back from Kuwait; Saban's will be yet another reporter* bullied from behind a press conference podium. Forgive me my orange-and-blue-tinted glasses, but once again I am glad we have our coach, and they have theirs.


*Admittedly, the barely-disguised glee said reporter takes in needling Saban is less than professional. I can't blame King Crimson for disliking the guy. But is the high road still so difficult to take? Is asking Saban to show the same professionalism towards the reporters he dislikes as well as the ones he likes (or comes closest to liking, I should say) really asking too much?


Anonymous said...

"Forgive me my orange-and-blue-tinted glasses, but once again I am glad we have our coach, and they have theirs."

I'm glad we (Bama) have ours as well.

Jerry Hinnen said...

Of course. This isn't meant as some rational, factual attempt to somehow turn anyone against King Crimson, trust me. We simply prefer our guy; you prefer your guy; the world continues to spin.

Sullivan013 said...

As retired Army officer, all I can say is you cannot imagine how much this visit meant to the people who are serving unless you've been there. I'm overjoyed that these five coaches 'got it' and had both the opportunity and willingness to go.

God bless them all.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget, When the great Satan, was down here coaching the 'phins he declined an offer to have lunch with the President because it would have cut into his film time.

Jerry Hinnen said...

Thanks for sharing, Sullivan.

Anon 11:04: I'd forgotten about that. Thanks for the reminder.