A university is just a group of buildings gathered around a library. ~Shelby Foote

Friday, January 19, 2007

Friday's List: Most Hated Coaches

I have been fortunate during my life to never have a truly despicable coach. I've had a bad coach or two, but never a mean, spiteful A-hole in any of the myriad of combinations that A-holes come in. So, this list is entirely national spotlight coaches-- college or professional-- and it is probably skewed to the sports I watch most, football and basketball. As a warm up, here's Tuesday Morning Quarterbacks' take on coaching.

Remember, these are coaches I hate-- which, ironically, means most of them have been very, very successful:

12. Mike Sherman. Because he ruined the Packers for a minimum of two years. Granted, most of that was in his role as a GM-- as a coach, I think Sherman was mediocre-- but he is still one of my most hated coaches. If for no other reason than he lost the Philly game, costing us a likely Super Bowl appearance, and then scapegoated Ed Donatell for his own failings as a coach.

11. Steve Spurrier. He was a pioneer in the "Roll up wins at a college football factory, abandon school to grab a big contract from a gullible owner in the NFL, return to college football factory for even bigger contract after failing miserably in the NFL" strategy. Nick Saban would perfect the strategy a few years later.

10. Pete Rose. Exhibit #1: He's a major league jerk. Exhibit #2: He did the one thing you absolutely can't do as a coach in major league baseball-- and then has the brass to whine about being a victim when he's caught. Exhibit #3: He's an unapologetic jerk.

9. Larry Brown. A coaching Ho, whom I have never liked. It's more than just the bouncing from job to job, grabbing the cash as he goes, but I'm not sure what-- maybe that I think he's overrated, yet continues to be this Great Coach figure in basketball. This is funny.

8. Larry Kehres. Coach of the Division III Mount Union Purple Raiders, Kehres regularly runs the score up on overmatched opponents, illustrating that poor sportsmanship is not confined to the big boys of NCAA football. For details on Kehres' poor sportsmanship, read this TMQ column (you'll need to scroll down almost to the bottom under: Bad Sportsmanship Watch).

7. Nick Saban. No, he's not the first coach to abandon one job for the big $ at another job, but the way he did it was pretty appalling.

6. Bill Parcells. Anybody with the nickname "The Big Tuna" should be reviled on general principle. Arrogant and condescending, yet I begin to wonder how much of his success in the past was due to having Bill Belichick as his defensive coordinator. And there are the man boobs. Shudder. A prime candidate for The Bro.

5. Bill Belichick. He's not a preener, which is something. But he is a jag in a variety of ways, and I'm tired of his team winning all the time.

4. Pat Riley. Preening donkey, who bails when his team is struggling, and takes over just when the return of injured stars guarentees the team will do better, making him look good.

3. Isiah Thomas. A bully who pretends to be the victim when he's called out. Whining cry baby, would be another way of putting it.

2. Brian Billick. Preening, condescending prick. I think that sums it up pretty well.

1. Bob Knight. He's in a class by himself, really. Lessee, threw a chair onto the court in a childish tantrum, grabbed a player by the throat in practice in a childish fit of anger, curses like a truck driver during post-game interviews, and generally acts like a spoiled second grader when he can't have the red crayon.

There are no doubt many others I am forgetting, but this is a start. Feel free to kick in other candidates, folks.

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