Thank You, Coach Wulff

Hello Followers.  Hope your Sunday is off to a good start.

As for me, well, last night’s game and the news which followed re: Coach Wulff has been a real killer.  

Mind you, I’m not surprised, but I am real bummed out.  I mean, REALLY bummed out.

I told SeanHawk on Wednesday that I thought that Wulff was gone. The reason?  As we have mentioned here over and over again, there was no way to let Wulff coach into next season without a contract extension.  And while I thought that most of the Cougar faithful would have embraced a decision to extend him after last week’s game, I knew that a loss in the Apple Cup would make extending him a political nightmare, even if there was a plurality of WSU boosters who wanted him back.

Of course, even though I knew that we would lose last night’s game, I was not entirely prepared to read the news last night that Moos had made the decision to can Wulff even if we had won that stinking game last night.

I mean, really?

Did we really want to can Wulff if he fell one game short of a bowl (and if you count Wilson’s touch against Utah, we actually did) with a back-up quarterback in tow? 

Did we really want to can a guy and a staff who signed on one of the conference’s top returning quarterbacks before he even became a starter at his high school (e.g. how much better at recruiting/talent evaluation can you possibly be?)  

Did we really just want to throw away the improved grades, graduation rates, and moral character of the program just because of an abysmall W-L record in our first few seasons?

And truly, it is THAT line of thinking that says it all–not only about College Football today, but also about the character of Bill Moos’ and the intitution of “higher learning” that WSU has become.  After all, if you take at face value that Mike Leach is the leading candidate to become the next coach at WSU, don’t you shudder more than a bit about his history? 

I mean, do any of you believe that the stuff about Craig James’ son was entirely false?  Or, put differently, assuming that James’ story (and the attendent investigation by Texas Tech) represented only a half truth, was does that say about our values that we would want to bring on a guy that locked a kid in a small room until he learned better discipline?  

Does that behavior–which was enough to get him canned at a school like Texas Tech–reflect the type of values and/or “family” atmosphere that we all like to trumpet about our school?

Is that the type of athletic departmet Moos is trying to cultivate at WSU?

What’s more, when you consider the fact that Mike Leach attended our spring game this year, and well, its hard not to get a little nauseous about the hidden plot that may have existed all along.

And, at least for me, that sickness gets worse when I think about Wulff getting canned today or tomorrow even if we had won yesterday.  I mean, did we actually just use one of our own alumns to serve as a place sitter for an (allegedly abusive) weirdo that lives and dies for the next Pirates of the Caribean movie as much as the welfare of his student athletes?

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So, while we all await news of our new future directions, I would personally like to thank Paul Wulff for his years of service to HIS school.

I want to thank him for eschewing the JC rebuild so we could develop a program for the long haul.

I want to thank him for believing in his players and setting expectations high, even though we didn’t have the chips to back up all of the talk he provided at the beginning of each year.

I also want to thank Wulff for treating each of our victorious opponents like they were a top 10 team, so that he could avoid questioning the development, talent, and fortitude of young kids struggling to build a positive identity.

I want to thank him for starting a freshman quarterback in Week 10 so that we could build the program moving forward, even if doing so might have contributed to a 3-9 season that, even under the best of circumstances, would have meant the end of his tenure.

And I want to thank him for showing all of us that sometimes its better to be loyal and principled and lose than it is to be disloyal, unprincipled, and fundamentally dishonest.  After all, we’ve seen too much of that recently in college football.  And unfortunately, we now may be seeing that a bit within our own university as well.

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So, onto the future we go.   And if the story holds, not only will we have pirates running our football program, we will have leaders who have pirated much of the Cougar “family” and its alleged ethos and principles.

In the meantime, happy trails, Paul Wulff.  At least you know that some of your fellow alumni appreciate not only you and your efforts, but the values and principles that you valiantly stood and fought for.

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