"Do you think if you were still the coach this team would have been 10-2 this year?"
"Yep. At least." (laughs) "But that's again being confident and a lot of things going the right way, and certainly we had to make a few changes, needed alterations and had to play better defensively." [emphasis added]
Look, I don't want to beat a dead horse here but if you're gonna say that, then pardon me while I get my whip. Okay, got it. Thus...
You're out of your fucking mind. I'm just happy Michigan didn't have to go through a 4th year of The Dark Period to prove it. I'm glad we didn't have to watch another squad not only not improve during the course of a season, but get worse as the weeks wore on. I'm thankful to not have seen a great offense get stuck in the mud each time it played a team with a pulse.
I'm glad that's all behind us.
And now that Michigan is coming off the first 10-win season by a rookie coach in A2 since Fielding H. Yost in 1901, one that not even the most optimistic fan could've hoped for? Naturally, Rodriguez could have done just as well. At least.
No, that's not confidence, that's hubris. That's a man who hasn't learned from his mistakes like he claimed he has. That's a coach I'm glad is no longer leading our team.
So what should Rich Rod have said to the interviewer's question?
How about something along the lines of, "I don't want to get into that. It serves no purpose. I'm the head football coach at Arizona now, not Michigan anymore. But since I coached most of those guys, I'm happy for them, proud of them and wish them the best. They and the current staff did a tremendous job this season."
It's called the high road. With no subtext to deflect blame. No wink-wink to make sure folks "know" what "really" happened.
Instead, once again, Rodriguez sounds like an old lover who says he's moved on but then takes every opportunity to talk about why the relationship didn't work out and, more importantly, doing so via thinly veiled barbs explaining why the break-up wasn't his fault.
Contrast that with Brady Hoke's words.
When he was first hired, Hoke was asked about his expectations for the upcoming season. Now, it would have been very easy and understandable for him to say something about lowering expectations due to a new coach with new assistants coming in with new schemes, new plays and new ideas. He could have pointed out he was taking over the worst defense in the history of Michigan football. He could have asked for time saying Vince Lombardi couldn't make that much of an impact in one year. He could have said a lot of things like that.
But he didn't.
Instead, if you recall, Hoke said that the expectation is for Michigan to win the Big Ten championship. He said that's always the expectation at Michigan. And he stated that if they didn't do that, then he and his assistants will have failed the players.
When Michigan lost the MSU game played in the tornado scene from The Wizard of Oz, he could have shouted from the rooftops about how Michigan was robbed due to MSU's thuggish play. But he made no excuses.
And at the end of his inaugural 10-2 season which led to a BCS bowl berth, was Hoke basking in his success or pointing out how well he did? Quite the contrary. Hoke said his team didn't win the B1G and thus they still had a lot of work to do.
Rodriguez also mentioned in this interview (and others) that Michigan's players this season were "his guys." Really? Weren't contributors this season such as Hemingway, Herron, Huyge, Molk and Wolfolk all 5th year seniors who were recruited by and thus played a season for Carr? And, correct me if I'm wrong, weren't players like Demens, Floyd, Koger, Martin and Moore 4th year seniors who were initially recruited by Carr but still signed with Michigan when Rodriguez took over?
Point is, it's not "Rodriguez's team" any more than it's "Carr's team." It's Brady Hoke's team. It's Brady's team and he deserves the credit.
So good luck in Arizona, Rich. Really. Everybody says you're a nice guy. And the past has proven you're a good football coach. It just didn't work out in A2. Shit happens.
But if you have moved on as you claim, then please stop talking about it. And no, nobody wants to hear, "Well they asked me about it! I didn't bring it up." Fair enough. So in an effort to solve that problem, here's a crazy idea: stop doing interviews with Michigan-based media outlets for awhile. Because, going back to the old relationship example, you're gonna end looking like the dude who keeps hanging out with the mutual friend who lives down the hall on your ex's floor in her dorm. And that doesn't look good.
I'm just sayin'.
|According to Rich Rod's telling of the story, the bare cupboards|
were the fault of the previous homeowner.