Mailbag question: In regards to Morgan Trent


Posted at 8:00am — 5/11/2010

Mailbag question: In regards to Morgan Trent

I am a big fan of this site

What is the relationship between former Coach Carr and Coach Rod? I am sure you have been asked this before.

I have very limited contacts but each person I know who does have some ties, including a former player and a sports agent, state that Carr cannot stand Coach Rod. This story is another embarrassment for Michigan and I am sure the story will spiral out of control in the national media.

Why is it that Coach Rod cannot stay out of the news? Where there is smoke, there is fire and I am getting tired of a new (negative) story coming out every other month.

Thank you and keep up the great work.

Daniel M.


(GBMW reference) Here is the article about Morgan Trent and what he said about Coach Rod:

Author says Trent talks about Coach Rod


Daniel, thanks for the question and comment. The Trent article certainly has stirred the cauldron again.

First off, to the best of our knowledge Coach Rod and Coach Carr have a professional relationship. They are probably not the best of friends, but both care about the Michigan program and truthfully that matters very much, regardless of the connect-the-dots work being done by amateurs and professionals alike. Coach Carr poured his major life work into Michigan and does not want to see the program go down in Roman-like flames. Coach Rodriguez must have Michigan succeed to protect his livelihood.

In our opinion, Coach Carr has earned the right to retire in peace. By his very nature and demure, he is an under-the radar, semi-reclusive type. Further, Coach Carr does not owe the general public an audience every time some he-said, she said- squabble comes along.

Many other coaches who follow in huge footsteps would love to have a past-coach of large stature stay in the background, and most do. Coach Rod deserves to coach the team without Coach Carr’s shadow looming over the program. When Carr first retired people were worried he would be the type to look over the shoulder of Coach Rod. Coach Carr made clear he was in the background unless called upon and would keep comments private

It is time to let Coach Carr enjoy everything that coaching never allowed for. One thing people seem to forget is that Coach Carr had his detractors as well, but for the most part he won football games, his team won a National Championship, Big Ten Championships, and went to prestigious bowl games (and other nice venues, once called toilet bowl games, that the fan base would now jump for joy to book a ticket to).

The entire Trent article is based on what one person believes or perceives: the drama originated in private (if it did truly originate), and only two people, Trent and Carr, are primary sources as to the accuracy of Trent’s avowal. These two, between them, know the central basis of what the truth is regarding (1) what Coach Carr actually said to Trent and (2) the accuracy of what a scout stated. No scout is likely to step forward and become tangled in this mess. And keep in mind, what the scout (the ever-present phantom) said may not even be accurate, but instead just a case of humans being human and running off at the mouth. Or one of the other two parties may have a volcanic mouth. There is a chance all this is fabricated.

At the current time (subject to quick change) the exact wordage of what was stated is unknown, the scout is unknown (if the scout is actual), and one of the parties is not talking.

Human perception being what it is, the three parties may eventually agree on a common theme, but never the entire substance.

Here drops a thought intertwined between other discussion points. Does it really matter? Coach Carr has retired; Morgan (first round or sixth round) is off to a promising start in the NFL (a world in constant flux) and Coach Rod needs to be busting his butt to achieve some results.

Coach Rod made one blanket statement, a declaration of position, in which he clearly states he did nothing to hinder Trent’s career. That is all that should be expected, anything else is wasted energy. Trent has clearly made his belief core known and the decision is his as to what will peripherally creep out from this ongoing. And Coach Carr, it is absolutely his choice to talk to Coach Rod, talk publicly to clarify truth, or stay on the sideline, unless as a university employee he must defend himself against charges of unprofessional behavior.

Football is a very emotional game and sometimes when things go wrong people get emotional, logic dwindles, and the brain creates a scenario that the mouth delivers to the entire world.

Certainly, as all readers would expect, no one here certainly knows what was said (if anything) to whom.

No good can come from an article like this, and so the motives must be examined. But examining these motives is also clear conjecture, although connecting the dots on human behavior and motive happens everyday in courtrooms. Observers may state that here is a player with a bruised ego, one who “supposedly” does not like Coach Rod. Athletes at this age, even the nice guy types, very often have remarkably tender egos as any college coach can attest to. The most successful athletes can suffer from bruised ego more than the 3rd team punter. Observers may state that here is a former coach who never wanted Coach Rod to be hired, and a coach who undermines. This was an opportunity to put Coach Rod in a bad light without the former coach firing the bullet. Plausible this condition, but still conjecture. And finally there is Coach Rod, who made a clear declaration that Trent’s grievances are false, or at least inaccurate.

Would a coach tell NFL scouts the negative comments that Trent believes Coach Rod said? We are not sure to be honest, but in most cases head coaches will tell scouts what they believe a kid might need to work on, to improve, to get to the next level. We are not sure that a head coach would be so forthcoming about a former player unless he is trying to separate himself from players recruited by the former coach.

If you read Michigan message boards you will hear both sides of the argument and that even includes the always coronated “experts” who flip flop on what might have been said by whom. Recently one stated on a given day that Coach Rod just told the truth about Morgan Trent’s last year, saying that toughness was never Trent’s strong-suit at Michigan. A candid assessment is always appreciated by those at the next level, assuming the candidness is accurate and is not the posturing of a sales agent or, conversely, a malicious destroyer of opportunity. Good scouts and coaches at the next level can smell out both vendettas.

Then, this same poster, soon after, supported Coach Rod’s denial concerning saying negative things about Morgan Trent, and further Coach Rod wouldn’t say such things about a former player.

So which is it? Or do we have a myriad or a hybrid? We certainly do not know, nor will any of us spend our life’s effort arriving at a precise level of truth to the current melodrama.

Take it to the bank that the flip-flopping will continue, arguments will be put forth that appear logical, but as Aristotle eventually conceded, premises that appear to have perfect truth do not guarantee a perfect conclusion.

Follow this new episode of All My Children at your own bequest, but beware of sides being taken (agenda versus fact).

Sometimes being objective (especially in another nice mess like this) is a lot tougher than people think. People (fans) want what is best for the team, and want the team to always succeed. And so a part of human nature becomes to sway others without the necessary accuracy pertaining to matters as public, or secretive, as this.

Final Thoughts:

As we have said many times over the past couple of years, it is best if these type of comments could/would/should stay behind closed doors and addressed by the parties involved, but (again human nature) this process will not always happen.

With many programs this would be a “who cares” situation that would fade from the public eye in a matter of days.

But this is Michigan, a program that has struggled the last couple of years. And so the reaction brought about by the products becomes enzymatic and catalytic, and with sufficient energy to raise the heat. Energy can be converted to friction, a force that can cause a halting effect, slowing down any achieved momentum, an effect Michigan cannot afford.

The thing is people wonder why other teams are negatively recruiting Michigan. Something so easy as negative recruiting against Michigan is past tempting, it is irresistible.

Although it speaks poorly of society, winning, more so than any other factor, is the antidote and the strongest inhibitor to the toxic catalyst.

Written by GBMW Staff

Go Blue — Wear Maize!