Just when I thought Derek Dooley would keep himself out of the media, let his team's play speak for itself. Apparently I spoke too soon, or maybe not.
As I went to check Twitter this morning, I see this link from CBS Sports' Dennis Dodd about a decision that was made by Dooley concerning the media's coverage of his team. Before I go into the story, know that Dooley has not allowed the media into practice or even into their scrimmages.
But since the team was holding a mock game, reporters wanted to know if they'd be allowed access since it was technically considered "a game."
According to Knoxnews.com, Dooley slept on it and finally came to a conclusion. His decision was the reason Dodd is apparently up in arms. When I say "up in arms," just check his Twitter feed and you'll know what I'm talking about.
Dooley announced to the media members who were there that he would allow access to only a select group of individuals. All total, six were granted access.
As for his reasoning he told Knoxnews.com, "show up, which is No. 1. Give effort, and be respectful. That's kind of a Rule of Three in our program. Show up, meaning be where you're supposed to be—it doesn't matter what it is. Give effort, which means give your best—just try. And be respectful when you encounter other people."
"Now, you guys, there are a few of you guys who have gone above and beyond during training camp, just like some of the players, came for the majority of the front-end and back-end (of practice), you gave effort, worked and asked some tough questions. You were always respectful -- which I appreciate -- and so, John Painter has issued the first-annual Iron Vol of the Media. We've got a few people we wanted to recognize who will be attending our Wednesday night mock game for the entire session with the understanding that abuse brings control."
I don't know if I'm the minority when I say that I don't have a problem with the decision reached by Coach Dooley or if it really is that big of a deal.
Let's break this down for a second. This is a mock game, this isn't a game against Alabama, LSU, or Florida.
This is a game to get them ready for their season opener. If media members were actually being kept out of actual games, than I could see this complaint being legitimate. However, as it stands now, I don't know why this should be a major story.
I will say that Dooley's decision feels a lot like the decision Tiger Woods made when he did his apology speech, only allowing a certain few media members in.
However, this isn't Tiger Woods, this isn't major breaking news, this is a mock game. It's one step above a scrimmage.
If this was Bobby Bowden, Steve Spurrier, or Urban Meyer making this decision, would certain people be as upset as they are at Dooley?
Or is the real reason they're upset the fact that a first year coach from a Western Athletic Conference school (Louisiana Tech) has the nerve to dictate what happens with his team?
Whatever the case may be, this story will die off by tomorrow night when the season officially kicks off. They'll be mad for another day or so, then the winds will die down and it'll be life as usual.
I'm certainly not one to hate on a coach for a decision made concerning his team.
Isn't that his job?
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