Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Michigan take on the Rodriguez settlement

I got a note from a West Virginia fan earlier today. He wanted me to read the column in the Detroit Free Press about the former West Virginia head coach Rich Rodriguez. The same Rodriguez who led the Mountaineers to back to back Big East titles and was cheered mightily by the WVU faithful. And yet the same Rodriguez who left Morgantown for the greener pastures of Ann Arbor, and is now the most hated football coach in WVU. Mountaineer fans will tell you it wasn't about Rodriguez leaving, it was about how he left. And well, while the end was ugly, the truth is they wouldn't like him no matter how the end came to be. The fact is because it was so ugly, they dislike him a little bit more right now.

I'm not trying to defend Rodriguez. There is no doubt he's a great football coach. But he seems to lack a little in the character department. And the fact that he thought he get everyone to see it his way, when arguing that he shouldn't have to pay the $4 million buyout clause, is fairly laughable.

But fans must remember that coaches should look for "better" opportunities. Because fans are always looking for "better" coaches. That makes it difficult for coaches, makes their desire to look for other jobs more reasonable. RichRod (as he's now known in Michigan - the rest of the internet community uses an appropriate nickname for RichardRod) wasn't reasonable in expecting to not have to pay WVU the money he owed them. However, short of a lifetime contract, he was reasonable to wish to leave.

That is something we as fans have to realize and accept. Simply that if we want to able to call for coaches heads - and put them in a non-stable environment, we have to understand that when they move on its that environment that led to some of it. We can't want coaches fired after they goto bowl games, if we don't expect they will leave for "better" opportunities after striking gold.

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