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Doan: The Crazy Problems With Wazzu

CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Nov 12, 2012


Doan Thought: The wild problems with Mike Leach at Washington State


- Fiutak: Oregon vs. Kansas State? Yeah, But ...
- Cirminiello: SEC Is The Best League Without Question.
- Zemek: SEC, Welcome To A&M, And An Offense
- Harrison: No Need For SEC In BCS Championship 
- Doan: The Crazy Problems With Wazzu 

By Bart Doan
Follow me @Bart_cfn

Sit down before you read this. Washington State is not going to a bowl game this year. I know, I know, after Alabama losing shook up the college football world, this is the sort of ground breaking thing that alters your mindset for the season. But an interesting story is developing on the Palouse, and it speaks to, depending on your personality, an interesting epidemic that meshes both culture and the game of football.

Most people don't know who Marquess Wilson is. He's a wide receiver for Wazzu who this week wrote a letter of "resignation" from the Cougars football team. In and of itself, that's not much of a story, though he is a good football player. The story is that once again, Mike Leach, his former coach, is at the center of what another player is calling "physical, emotional, and verbal abuse."

Wilson's father allegedly inspired him to write the letter because WSU sent out a release saying that his absence was for "team violations," making it look like, at first glance, that he was doing something wrong. Wilson says it couldn't be further from the truth, that it was coaches who "belittle, intimidate, and humiliate us" that forced him to voluntarily leave the program.

There are a lot of things that smell here. For one, we'll never get the true story, though to Wilson's credit, he's trying. The dichotomy of the locker room is one that rarely does anything of true merit leave it. It's Fight Club, and the first rule is, you don't talk about it.

But this shows how far programs will go to promote vagaries to hide the truth. Violation of team rules wasn't even close to what happened. So who do we believe? Shouldn't programs be required to have a system of checks and balances to assure they're not blatantly fabricating what happens?

The old school purist will chide Wilson for not being tough enough. Football is a physical game. It's not for the faint of heart or weak willed, and nothing is considered "too much."

Yet the arc of our society is one that's increasingly sensitive across the board. Political correctness continues to win the chess match against common sense or sense of humor, at times. But whether you're one of those "toughen up, rub some dirt on it" types or a little more "player's coach," it has to give pause that not three years after the alleged Texas Tech incident where Adam James was supposedly locked in an electrical closet dealing with concussion symptoms, we're talking about a Mike Leach story of players being physically intimidated by the coaching staff.

Lightning typically doesn't strike twice, and if it does, it's because you're waving a steel rod in the air during a storm. Is this a problem? Should we be paying more attention to this? Or are we being too sensitive?

We'll likely never know, because what truly goes on in the locker room is under verbal lock and key. Always has been, always will be. Leach is guaranteed his first losing season as a head coach, and emotions seem to have hit a crescendo.

No matter where you stand on this issue, it bears worth watching. How far are coaches allowed to go? How sensitive is too sensitive? Is football still a last sanctuary for old school discipline? I don't have the answer, personally. But what I do know is that twice in the last four years this has become an issue under the same man's staff, embellished or not. The sooner we get real answers, the better. I won't hold my breath.  

- Fiutak: Oregon vs. Kansas State? Yeah, But ...
- Cirminiello: SEC Is The Best League Without Question.
- Zemek: SEC, Welcome To A&M, And An Offense
- Harrison: No Need For SEC In BCS Championship 
- Doan: The Crazy Problems With Wazzu 
 
















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