Following a controversial 31-30 loss to Texas Thursday night, fuming Iowa State head coach Paul Rhoads went on a rant that brought back shades of Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy.
But how did Rhoads memorable presser compare to what has quickly become the measuring stick of these sort of things?
Tale of the Tape
Name: Paul Rhoads
Years of Experience: 5 (25-30)
Big 12 titles: 0
Reason for Tirade
What Rhoads believed to be horrible officiating on the Longhorns’ final drive, when running back Johnathan Gray apparently fumbled. However, he was ruled down despite replays showing otherwise.
Name: Mike Gundy
Years of Experience: 9 (70-36)
Big 12 titles: 1
Reason for Tirade
Displeasure at an article by The Oklahoman’s Jenni Carlson, where she ponders reasons as to why quarterback Bobby Reid was demoted to second-string.
DING!! DING!! DING!!
Right off the bat, it’s quite clear that both Rhoads and Gundy would much rather be smiling, joking and laughing their way through a rather boring presser following a string of wins. However, college football is never that simple.
What’s also noticeable is how both men try to draw empathy towards their respective arguments.
Rhoads asks us to envision the difficulty of having to “put an arm around a guy, and tell them its OK, when that happens to them.” On the other hand, Gundy brings up women and kids, stating, “this was brought to me by a mother…with children.”
The two continue on, using inflection of voice, body movement and pauses after short, direct sentences to nail their point home.
If anything should be taken from these rants, it’s that both Rhoads and Gundy will stand up for their respective squads. They’d probably jump in front of a bullet for them—Gundy pretty much did.
While the public and media will criticize them for their actions, the players love playing for a head coach like this.
On its own, Rhoads' tirade may come off as intimidating and memorable. But in comparison to Gundy’s, he comes off more like a scared, nervous teenage boy asking a girl out to the prom. Go back and watch them both again.
While in the moment, Rhoads probably envisioned his swaying from side to side looked menacing. But in reality, it just looks like he really, really needs to use the bathroom.
Meanwhile, Gundy paces back and forth on the podium, making direct eye contact with several of the members in attendance. He comes off like a tiger pacing in front of its prey, debating on what part of the body he wants to pounce at first.
Just take a look at the guy at 3:18—absolute fear in his eyes.
Finally, as you’re watching Rhoads display his frustration, anger and pride from the night’s events, you’re patiently awaiting the “drop the mic” moment. Instead, the coach re-gathers himself and simply states, “go ahead.”
What? You don't just sit there and answer questions after that.
On the other hand, Gundy practically wishes for tears to come flowing from the writer’s future children, calls her a kid and then says the whole thing “makes me want to puke.” All before swiftly exiting stage left.
Well done, Gundy. Well done.
Summing It All Up
There’s no doubt that Rhoads' antics provided for a good laugh and some good drama. In fact, it could probably be said that it’s the most exciting thing to come from a Texas game to date.
However, this writer is just not convinced this even deserves to be in the same breath as Gundy’s tirade.
An A for effort though.
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