Wyoming coach Joe Glenn made a very bad decision in the midst of his team’s 50-0 drubbing at the hands of Utah Saturday. Moments before, Utes coach Kyle Whittingham had also made a bad decision.
Ahead 43-0 and kicking off following a field goal, the Utes executed an unsuccessful onsides kick, an obvious attempt to run up the score. Glenn flashed his middle finger at Whittingham, a surprising loss of good judgment for an NCAA coach.
Glenn had more than one reason to be embarrassed. Besides being down 43-0 at the time, he was clearly replaying in his head the tape of him guaranteeing a victory over Utah at a school function earlier in the week. This is also a surprising loss of good judgment for an NCAA coach.
Glenn was reprimanded by his conference. Today he apologized. He initially claimed he didn’t remember the gesture, but eventually acknowledged it. “I met with my team on Sunday and apologized to them for the gesture I made toward the Utah bench during the game,” Glenn said. “I also want to apologize to all fans for that action. Football is an emotional game, and I let my emotions get the best of me. I felt it was appropriate for me to let my team and all fans know that I am truly sorry for that emotional moment.”
For his part, Whittingham also acknowledged the onsides kick while up 43-0 was indeed a “bad decision.”
Both of these coaches get bad marks for character. Forgiveness, when asked, should be given. But both of these guys need to make some kind of positive contribution to the character of the young men they lead, to make up for the bad influence their actions conveyed.
NCAA coaches are big boys. They should know better. And they should care more about making a positive impact on young lives than throwing an obscene tirade at an enemy or trying to grind a guy’s face in the dirt for something he foolishly said.
Now, having apologized, Joe Glenn and Kyle Whittingham need to do some “community service.” They need to make some kind of clear positive contribution to make up for their childish antics. And they both need to grow up.