A coaching rumor popped up regarding Tom Herman and Baylor last week. This one smelled like three-week old raw fish from the very beginning. For starters, it's the middle of summer. And there was the fact that Baylor didn't have a full-time AD at the supposed time of the meeting.
It wasn't the first rumor to pop about Houston's second-year coach, and it won't be the last. Speaking at the Texas High School Coaches Association convention Monday, Herman sounded off on his thoughts on false rumors involving his job prospects (quotes via the Houston Chronicle):
"It's a shame because it affects my family life, too. When I do my job poorly or when I make a mistake in my job, there are tangible repercussions of that. It feels like now that our media - if that's what you want to call some of these guys with a smartphone in their hand and sources - there are no repercussions. There's no restitution for me."
"I had to spend a day of vacation – I was at Schlitterbahn on Wednesday with my kids and my phone's blowing up and I have to spend time on vacation away from my family to then draft some statement and squash some rumors," he said.
"Did that guy have to do that, that was wrong? Did he have to come out and make a statement that he was wrong? No."
"It's just a shame that that's the way that media is today. I just wish there were more repercussions and punishment for those when you get it wrong. Just like my kids, you screw up, you screw up. Say it. 'I screwed up. I apologize. I screwed up.'"
"I have so much more respect for someone when they say 'I was wrong, I admit I was wrong. I apologize for being wrong. I'll do a better job next time so I get it right.' Great. Shake hands and let's move on."
"But when guys are wrong and egregiously wrong and still defend their wrongness, that's when I have a problem."
Does Herman have a right to be upset? 100 percent yes. Having to answer to everyone around you about reports that aren't true is a frustration, one assumes, someone can only truly understand until it happens to them. And having someone take away from your time at Schlitterbahn is an especially egregious sin.
But, at the same time, that's major college football in 2016. It sucks, sure, but it's part of the job. Division III coaches don't have to put out these fires -- at least not on this scale -- but Division III coaches don't get paid $3 million a year, either.
For as long as Herman remains at Houston, and as long as he keeps winning at Houston, this is the territory he lives in now. (I don't want this to come across as defending those who author false reports. Far from it.) And, absurd as it may seem when you're on the phone with your SID at a water park on your family's vacation, these particular headaches are privileges. Put it this way: 6-6 coaches aren't constantly floated for new jobs.
My advice to Herman: grin, bear it, and go buy a toy dog you can kick anytime someone with a Twitter account thinks they know what job you're taking next.
(HT Houston Chronicle)