Every day, I consume sports. When I’m home doing homework, making dinner or relaxing, I’ve got ESPN on the TV. In the car, I’m tuned in to 92.1 The Ticket.
This week I’ve heard two stories almost everywhere I go. At home, I was inundated with the ESPN Outside the Lines report about Rutgers basketball coach Mike Rice abusing his players at practice.
I watched the report three times, and each time I was bothered more. I was especially disturbed by the Rutgers athletic director defending his decision not to fire Rice.
ESPN obtained film of Rice kicking, shoving and throwing basketballs at his players. He also berated them and harassed them with homophobic slurs.
You should be able to see why I was disturbed at the clip of the athletic director defending the choice to keep him on staff.
Rutgers must have received a lot of backlash on that subject, because Wednesday around noon, I got a notification that Rice was fired.
To that I say, good job, Rutgers. Coaches have been fired for less offensive behavior.
Also, after the OTL report, Rutgers recruiting would have dropped. Parents wouldn’t want to send their sons to play under a coach who berates them and pushes them around.
A person should not remain in a position of authority if he does not respect and honor his subordinates.
That was what I saw on TV. Now, let’s move to the radio. The big topic of conversation on 92.1 this week was a comment by head coach Bret Bielema at a Razorback Club meeting.
“You can take Saban’s record when he was at Michigan State and when he was a coach in the Big Ten and put it against mine, and he can’t compare,” Bielema said.
Apparently, this caused such a ruckus that Bielema even tweeted about it Monday.
I don’t think this is something that should’ve riled people up or something that deserved even half of the airtime it received.
I equate Bielema’s comment to encouraging the fans at the meeting. He was just trying to give them something to be excited about and repeat what he said during his first press conference as Arkansas head coach.
He wants to bring a Southeastern Conference Championship to Arkansas.
Bielema wants to do that just as much as LeBron James wanted to bring an NBA Championship to South Beach, Fla.
People who think Bielema was being haughty can thank their lucky stars that he didn’t say he was going to bring “not one, not two, not three, not four...”
Kristen Coppola is the sports editor for the Arkansas Traveler. Her column appears every Thursday. Follow the sports section on Twitter @UATravSports.