Rich Rod Losing Control of Wildcats

Four football players from the University of Arizona were arrested last week for charges ranging from trespassing to assault. The charges were made after the players initiated a brawl at a party they were not invited to. The police report says one players “started punching everyone he could reach,” including women.

The University’s response is crucial because the team has started off on the wrong foot with new head coach Rich Rodriguez. Not only does this situation show a lack of current control with his team, Rodriguez has had trouble with his teams in West Virginia and Michigan.

Photo by RichKD via flickr

Having control over his team is more than just this one incident for Rodriguez. If he lets this incident pass without sufficient penalties, he will not have the necessary respect from his players. One incident will turn into two, then the build up of incidents will turn the focus from the Wildcats performance on the field to their performance in the courts. Rich Rod cannot afford to lose his team’s respect before he ever coaches a single game in Tuscon.

The next couple weeks are vital for the image of the University of Arizona and their football program. The reputation of the University is at stake if Rodriguez doesn’t take appropriate action. Having a reputation as an institution that allows athletes to skate by after assaulting women is the wrong image to have.

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4 thoughts on “Rich Rod Losing Control of Wildcats

  1. Personally, this doesn’t really come as a surprise to me. I’ve never liked him and what he stands for as a coach. He has let all of the teams he has been in charge with spiral out of control off the field. While a lot of players do stupid things, no matter the coach, to have his last 3 head coaching jobs marred with such offenses speaks to his character, or lack thereof.

  2. The sad fact is that there likely will be minimal repercussions as a result of this incident — college football players are shown much of the same star treatment as professional athletes because they are valuable commodities that make their institutions big bucks. Without knowing Rich Rod personally it is difficult to comment on whether or not his coaching accurately reflects his character, but he is certainly doing himself no favors by continuing to head programs whose players cannot seem to control their antics off the field.

  3. In recent years, stories like this are becoming seemingly ubiquitous. The unfortunate reality here is that no matter how hard leagues and coaches try to circumvent these incidents, a few individual athletes are going to lose control and will do something illegal or reckless; no amount of potential punishment or prophylactic policy is going to solve the issue completely. Honestly, how can one man or one organization attempt to single-handedly fix athletes who have had their lives marred by constant worship and special treatment since youth? You can’t communicate to someone their entire life that they are special and that the rules don’t apply to them and also expect them to suddenly adhere to the standards society expects as soon as they enter the media spotlight.

    Regardless of who their coach is or what team they play for, some players will act out and end up doing something stupid. However, the most important metric of a coach’s leadership skill and ability to keep his team in check is how he handles the aftermath of such an incident. Does the coach act decisively? Does he overreact? Underreact? Does he put the interests of the team’s on-field success above taking the appropriate action against the player in question? This is the time when we will see if Mr.Rodriguez has changed; we will see if he is able to successfully manage a team for it is during adversity and difficult circumstances that the character of a man truly comes to light.

  4. In recent years, stories like this have become seemingly ubiquitous. The unfortunate reality here is that no matter how hard leagues and coaches try to circumvent these incidents, a few individual athletes are going to lose control and will do something illegal or reckless; no amount of potential punishment or prophylactic policy is going to solve the issue completely. Honestly, how can one man or one organization attempt to single-handedly fix athletes who have had their lives marred by constant worship and special treatment since youth? You can’t communicate to someone their entire life that they are special and that the rules don’t apply to them and also expect them to suddenly adhere to the standards society expects as soon as they enter the media spotlight.

    Regardless of who their coach is or what team they play for, some players will act out and end up doing something stupid. However, the most important metric of a coach’s leadership skill and ability to keep his team in check is how he handles the aftermath of such an incident. Does the coach act decisively? Does he overreact? Underreact? Does he put the interests of the team’s on-field success above taking the appropriate action against the player in question? This is the time when we will see if Mr.Rodriguez has changed; we will see if he is able to successfully manage a team for it is during adversity and difficult circumstances that the character of a man truly comes to light.

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