Mike Leach is going to clean up financially from this wrongful termination. My advice to Texas Tech is #1 never hire a lawyer for a head coach, and #2 if you do hire a lawyer for a head coach, you better follow the letters of that contract extension you sign.
Crybaby James was under medical supervision when he was “abused” and the team physician stated on the record that James was in no way mistreated and that nothing James’ described that happened to him was detrimental in anyway to a person who was suffering from a concussion.
If you think this incident is the only grounds they had to fire Leach, sure it’s an easy case. Assuming that the university is not run by complete morons I would vet there is more to this case than what has been made public.
The University is located in Lubbock, Texas, of course it’s run by morons. If there is a litanny of reasons to fire Coach Leach I kinda doubt the university of morons would have signed him to a $12.7 million contract extension 9 months ago. I’ve never paid someone $12.7 million to do anything for me, but if I did, I would probably make sure they are both capable and will work in my best interest and won’t commit human rights violations against my students. Also, I probably wouldn’t have started collecting grounds for firing him after 10 seasons as my coach without any complaint other than this one, to date.
Texas Tech Coaches and players trash Adam James as a lazy, conceited, ass that faced repeated disciplinary actions in both Baseball and Football.
Sometimes, DK, you just need to scrape a little beneath the surface to get to the truth, sometimes you need to dig deep, this is an easy one. The university had buyer’s remorse and was looking for any out they could get and took this one.
Coach Leach has been a head coach for 20 years (10 years at Texas Tech) and he’s never had ONE complaint of abuse against him during those 20 years, and the medical physicians say that James’ description of his treatment was not harmful or dangerous in any way. Tech has falsely maligned and desparaged Coach Leach publicly, and Craig James is really walking a fine line. I hope Leach nails both of those dumbasses with defamation lawsuits along with wrongful termination. I could see Leach walking away with $15 million from the University easily, possibly a lot more. Tech is on the hook for $10 million just for breaking their contract. I hope Leach shuts Craig James’ fat, lying, crybaby face for good.
Sandy, I disagree that this is all on Craig James and his whiney son. That seems like a completely unfair reading of the situation – that because James has media connections, he HAS to be in the wrong here.
I really liked what the Washington Post columnist Sally Jenkins wrote about this. She suspects that Leach and James are involved in a parent/coach standoff, one which is easy to get into, and which normally has very little in the way of consequences, except this time, we have a powerful parent involved. Plus, your attitude about people not playing through serious head injuries as “cry babies” seems a bit much, methinks.
I DO suspect that Texas Tech, upon seeing this standoff, fanned the flames. They lost the contract negoiations last year very publicly, and the administration seems to have LEAPT at the chance to fire Leach. I want to see a full investigation here – and I suspect that Tech is going to be the worst party. But Leach needs to be looked into. If this is true at all, then Leach deserved to be fired. If not, then he deserves to coach elsewhere. This is, after all, a very weird position for the university that employed Bob Knight for a while to be in.
After all, this isn’t the first Big XII coach to get in trouble this year. Coach Mangino was let go after it was discovered he ate 3 of his players whole, so this isn’t unprecidented.
Also, the more I look into this, the more it seems that Leach did something untoward, and that some people in the administration were trying to throw him a life line. Basically, the more I understand, the more I have no sympathy with Leach, and think he deserves this, and will most likely lose his lawsuit.
Sandy, you are an idiot. I’m not going to try and be polite, i’m just saying it straight out. You. Are. An. Idiot.
YOU are the one jumping to conclusions based on limited evidence and internet rumor mongering. You are declaring that you have all the answers and yet at the same time accusing me of not digging deeper?
Sorry dumbass, but thats just plain wrong.
*I* am waiting to see how things shake out, but saying that my GUESS is that there is something more going on that just this situation. So lets see, you think that Texas Tech is run by idiots who fired a highly succesful coach after how many years, based on one single accusation? I, am assuming that there is more going on than we know about. Which of those makes more sense? Which is more reasonable?
Of course, we have to go back to the fact that you still think, despite evidence to the contrary, despite no evidence to support it, and despite numerous more reasonable, simple, and frankly understandable reasons, that the moon landing is one huge conspiracy.
You really are some sort of uber troll, or are at least two donuts short of a dozen.
I tried civil, but you decided to call me crazy for waiting til there are more details and not buying into your (and gahrie’s) knee jerk reactions. Whatever moron.
Here’s a point to show that Leach is in trouble: Leach’s lawyer is saying “They DID lock him in a room, it is just not as small and dark as Texas Tech is claiming”. (John Feinstein, off the Tony Kornheiser Show) Very bad. And making Sandy and gahrie completely insane.
Some of that may be true. But that doesn’t change the fact that Leach acted stupidly and irresponsibly himself. The chancellor at Texas Tech has described offering Leach help, and says he was ignored. If that is true, then Leach deserved his firing.
And I will accept that James is a jerk. That may well be true! But the proper response is to revoke his scholarship after season’s end, not to lock him in a closet! That is unacceptable, no matter how you slice it, and that alone shows that Leach was justifiably fired.
And to see you, gahrie, using the football version of the chickenhawk arguement, is surprising. It doesn’t work for the Iraq war, and it doesn’t work for football.
It doesn’t work for the Iraq war, and it doesn’t work for football.
Actually, I find that it does.
People who have never played team sports just don’t get a lot of what goes on in team sports. This goes double for football.
James’s punishment was to sit in a building near the practice field. He was forced to do this so he wouldn’t go off somewhere and goof off instead of practicing. He already had a reputation for dogging practice. He was in the dark BECAUSE of his concussion. It would have been more unhealthy for him to stand on the field in the sun.
This incident was just an excuse. An excuse for the James kid to get a transfer and possibly not lose a year, and a chance for Texas Tech to fire their winningest coach in time to avoid paying him $800,000.
I played football in high school – for an old-school, harsh coach – and I wasn’t very good. If I had missed a practice for a concussion, my coach was the kind who might think of sending a guy like me to the ol’ dark shed…because that was his “style”. Such a thing would never happen to an important player like one of our all-staters.
Which raises a question: is James an important player, like one of my high school team’s all-staters, or was he fairly extraneous, like I was on my high school team? Measured by playing time, he may seem extraneous, but by being Texas football royalty he would seem to be someone with whom a coach shouldn’t f*** too much.
To suggest, Gahrie, that the humiliation of the shed carries no long-term medical impacts misses the point entirely: by publicly humiliating and f****** with the kid of Craig James, a kid perhaps too open with his dissatisfaction with the team, is a pretty strong indicator that Leach has more than a few screws loose.
Leach may not have created this level of controversy in the past, but he has a reputation of being a bit of a nutter, and this incident certainly supports such a reputation. Where there’s smoke there’s usually fire.
1) What the hell is wrong with humilation? If we had a little more humilation in our lives today the world would be a better place. Humiliation serves a perfectly good purpose.
2) He wasn’t faking the concussion..and no one, not me, not Leach no one has said he was. Nice attempt at a strawman.
3) He wasn’t alone in some dark enclosed space somewhere One time he was in a large garage type room with an open wall and a training assitant with him. The second time he was in a media room with several training assistants outside the door who checked on him on a regular basis. While he was in the media room he chose to go into an electrical closet and take the video he posted. (which shows bad faith on his part)
4) He was never put in a closet and as I have stated several times before Leach required all of his injured players to attend practice.
The second time he was in a media room with several training assistants outside the door who checked on him on a regular basis.
Gahrie, you’re a conservative, yes? Typically conservatives (in particular) reject Gestapo-like tactics; of course you are not obliged to do so, but that comment comes across a bit odd from a committed right-wingy freedom-lover.
Re: humiliation, I recommend that when you arrive at your place of employment Monday, go into the office of your boss’ boss, and tell him or her that she is a bit fat idiot. Humiliation, after all, is a good thing, and your boss’ boss, like all the rest of us, could probably use a dose of it.
For me, the nail in Leach’s coffin is the assertion that Adam James is a low-effort guy. I’m not going to link Geoffrey Colvin’s fantastic book “Talent is Overrated” for the 100th time here, but suffice it to say that Craig James didn’t become one-half of the most celebrated backfield in Texas university history by “dogging it”. Its possible that the apple fell far from the tree with his kid….but the fact that papa is involved enough to drive this suit suggests ‘probably not’, that Leach is likely the lunatic that B. Minich or David K suspects, and not the misunderstood disciplinarian seen by Gahrie and Sandy U.
I’m not saying Leach is a lunatic, an idiot maybe. My stance is that this incident as reported by both sides shows an incredible lack of judgement on Leaches part and it’s likely there is MORE going on than just this if they were willing to fire him.
gahrie, humiliation because he had a concussion? What a moronic defense. There is no dispute that the concussion was real. Therefor anything that would be punishmnent is immediately indefensible. Further you asserted that it was acceptable because Jones was supposedly a known slacker. Why even make that argument unless you believe he was faking the concussion? No strawman at all, just responding to your weak defenses.
The odd thing about the “so-what-he-stuck-a-malcontent-with-a-concussion-in-a-dark-garage” meme is that it completely misunderestimates the challenges of running a university. Its funny when a guy like Mandel makes that argument, as if he understands the first thing about managerial economics, as if he would have his current job if he understood the first thing about managerial economics.
How many coaches affiliated with Texas Tech do we know to impose ridiculous abuse on any of their players? Uh, two. How many in the NCAA’s, total? Again, two. But there’s a big difference between Leach’s and Knight’s transgressions: putting your hand’s around a dude’s neck (Knight) will get you in big trouble, and as a lawsuit may be worth a couple hundred grand. Leach’s dark room scheme, especially if the wrong doctor is testifying, could be several times worse than Knight’s crazy actions.
I’m not 100% sure of this, but as I understand it, schools of Texas Tech’s size generally self-insure, and they are usually too big for reinsurance. Unlike organizations such as Notre Dame or the Catholic Church, Texas Tech wouldn’t have enough deep-pocketed supporters to survive a catastrophic scandal, and if the James experience is the tip of an iceberg, that’s an iceberg that can easily sink the school.
I mean, seriously, fellas: Leach is an odd fellow. Go to YouTube and search “Fat Little Girlfriends” + “Mike Leach” and you will quickly encounter at least a half-dozen quotes that are positively bizarre, delivered with a straight face and total seriousness from what sure looks like a really really really weird guy.
As you watch those disturbing clips, imagine yourself a trustee at Texas Tech, and think about your university’s future being at the mercy of Leach’s “judgment”, and you may quickly realize that an $800,000 bonus is the least of their worries where the threat from Leach is concerned.
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About the Authors
Brendan Loy is a 31-year-old attorney, erstwhile journalist, and veteran blogger in Denver, CO. He formerly blogged as the "Irish Trojan." Brendan's wife, Rebecca Loy, also 30, is a stay-at-home mom in Denver. Brendan and Becky have three daughters, whose blog nicknames are "Loyette," "Loyacita" and "Loyabelle." More info here. Several others blog here in The Guest Room.
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