Scott Satterfield was taking a straightforward path Monday in his press conference as Louisville's head football coach.
The second-year leader of the Cardinals program, who interviewed on Friday with officials from the University of South Carolina about the Gamecocks' head coaching vacancy, had apologized to Louisville's fans and community.
He had stressed his commitment to the Cardinals, the program and making it a “top-five program, year in and year out.”
Then, Satterfield got asked about balancing his commitment to Louisville versus student-athletes' commitments to schools and programs.
“Well, I think as players, it's a little bit different than coaches,” Satterfield said. “I know sometimes we like to lump players in there with coaches. As a player, you're there for three or four years and then you're done. I think as coaches, and as players, you really don't have a family. It's just you.”
Satterfield then tried to clarify his stance. He further praised the demands on players' daily lives and schedules.
It didn't help the sound-byte.
“As coaches, and I'm just thinking in general terms here, coaches have wives and kids and as a job, are they going to be at a job for 40 years?,” Satterfield asked. “There's a lot of different things I think that are involved with coaching. I think with the players, it's three or four years and they have to be all-in. It's hard as a player. It's hard to get up and go to class and go to meetings and go weight training and go practice and come back and study. And oh, by the way, then go perform on gameday. It's just a lot of things that a player has to do that I think are pulling at, so many different avenues that are pulling at them. So you have to be all-in with it.
“I think as coaches it's a little bit different. You've got a career in coaching. Go back and look at any coach's bio; now, I've been fortunate and blessed. I was at one school (Appalachian State) for a long time. I would rather it be that way. I don't like the fact that you pick up and move and all that. That's not who I am. I don't like that at all. You want to be a at a place that you can thrive and win and do all those things. But I do think there's a little bit of differential between a player and a coach.”
Satterfield opened his 20-minute media session with a direct apology and addressed the Gamecock elephant in the room from the outset. He labeled his decision to speak with South Carolina about its vacancy, since filled by Shane Beamer, as a nod to his roots as a North Carolina native.
Satterfield emphasized South Carolina approached him and his interest was geographical.
“I do want to address some things that have gone on the last couple of weeks and particularly this weekend,” Satterfield said. “I go back to a couple weeks ago when we did get approached by South Carolina. Initially, I was not interested in that. We put a statement out there. That was 100% what we were doing that week (preparing for Boston College).
“As we moved forward, I forgot about it, getting ready to play the game in Boston College. We did have a bye week coming up. They circled back around with this, and I was thinking about it again, I said listen we got a bye week. They want to have a conversation. I'll listen to what they have to say.
“It's not one I was really interested in but said I would listen primarily because of where it was located. I spent 23 years there (of his coaching career in the Carolinas).”
Satterfield did not say he would not listen to future offers while he likewise emphasized Louisville was “a great place” and “where I want to be.”
“I would handle it a lot differently,” Satterfield said.