Michigan Wolverine Football: Extraneous Garbage- Where’s The Dump?


GBMWolverine Michigan Football TidbitsPosted at 7:00am — 4/15/2015

Michigan Wolverine Football: Extraneous Garbage- Where’s The Dump?

Building A Winning Football Program — Extraneous Garbage- Where’s The Dump?

Every coach hates the reality that extraneous garbage can soil the fine linen of a program, big or small. The bigger the program, the more garbage-hunters seek the miniscule to make news, web hits, serve fodder for opponent recruiting strategy, and in some cases drive a personal agenda. The bigger the program, the greater the number of garbage- seekers who put an ear on the ground. Some seekers do not interpret well what is heard, but instead hear what is wanted. And this is just the media’s end of the garbage pit.

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The age-old formula for such extraneous garbage is local control. A program can control who gets preferential treatment among the media. But excluding the clear enemies of the state has one inherent risk: said folks may become even more defiant and agenda ridden. Local control has two parts: first, those within the program and second, those who are complicit within the media. Between the two entities, deals can be made, information can be withheld from general knowledge, and no information about concerns or difficulties equals less damage.

Local damage control from the media is not near as effective as in the past since the big media players can put a really big ear to the ground and just one peep of a problem can lead to an almost instant landslide of information that flows public: some accurate and some not so accurate. Most sought after info is of course negative, a state that seems to draw more attention, more so than players raising money for charity, being named to Phi Beta Kappa, or visiting those in need.

Michigan Wolverines
Michigan Wolverines /

Michigan Wolverines

Coaches and programs have different approaches to dealing with the media waiting to pounce on a single word that can be transformed into news. There is probably not one guaranteed better method, but one piece of advice- be on the same page. Sometimes calm is mandated, sometimes standing ground and firing back may be the best strategy. Sometimes playing politician and giving little information to a stated question or blabbering on with minutes of dialogue that does not remotely answer a question, in short, the old sidestep.

A strong personality seems to deter little stuff because the risk falls to the questioner, such as asking a guy like Harbaugh if he can win this year. But those interviewing Bob Knight would intentionally ask a bona fide dumb-dumb to get a story from a felsic magma type like Robert Montgomery. The interviewer had no idea what treasure would come forward, but time after time, a story germinated out of nothing. There is always the risk of getting a dismissal of a question or a mocking from a personality type like Bill Belichick, one who would love to nuke extraneous garbage into oblivion.

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  • Sooner or later, in a moment that is usually when a down event occurs, the garbage hunters pounce. Again, there is no one sure strategy to best suite the circumstances.

    There is other extraneous garbage that coaches deal with everyday, including player difficulties, campaigning for player admission, dealing with rumors, shaping or even eliminating attitudes, and defending program players and coaches.

    Building a winning program means preventing, eliminating, or circumventing garbage. Perception formation moves at a much faster pace than in previous times. Having a coach that has some rock star traits can help build positive perception, right or wrong that happens. The media can even invigorate the rock star status, but the slope can change. Win and gain meaningful perception and the talent will come. And back to stage one of building a winning program we go, gather up the talent.

    So, coaches avoid the garbage collectors when possible, and react when conditions dictate. Garbage, dealing with it is part of the coaching profession’s job description. Still, it is usually irritation and more so than irritating it takes up time.

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    Written by GBMWolverine Staff — Doc4Blu

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