Troy Calhoun is tired of coaching in a conference full of Mormons.
Many Mormons of college age, you see, go on two-year missions; or as Calhoun calls them, the “two-year redshirt program.” That’s because this missionary work consists primarily of eating bowls of steroids and hitting the weightroom for 8 hours a day to turn these Mormon youths into 24-year-old man-beasts with a thirst for Air Force cadet blood (right?). So when Calhoun’s Air Force team is about to face a team from Utah, well, he just has to let the world know what kind of a disadvantage he’s facing.
Troy’s a pretty bright guy, though. He’s all about finding solutions to the tough problems, and this is no exception. His answer? Air Force should be able to redshirt players, too!
It’s time people stopped buying into Troy Calhoun’s act. That’s exactly what it is, by the way. It’s all for show. Every single press conference he has, he finds some way to inject something about “gee golly service and country blah blah” or some pseudo-intellectual nonsense, and it’s so over-the-top that it’s sickening. Just try reading the first two paragraphs of his official bio without having dry heaves. Air Force is playing on Boise’s blue turf? Well gosh tootin’ they’re gonna have to fly over all kinds of colors someday. Sweet comparison, coach. The BCS is unfair, so let’s talk about the days of the “old Soviet Presidium.” Oh he’s so smart! And when Wyoming head coach Dave Christensen goes on a postgame tirade, noted constitutional scholar Troy Calhoun decides it’s time to reflect on the First Amendment. Seriously? How condescending can you be? Who talks like that? Someone looking to avoid the tough questions, that’s who.
And that’s the act. By being so over-the-top with his Howdy Doody facade of courage and the Constitution and whatever other patriotic buzzword you can think of, nobody bothers to question him. Look elsewhere for your stories, nosy media, because Troy Calhoun is an American patriot. There’s nothing to see here. If Dave Christensen goes on a rant because he thought Calhoun had one of his players fake an injury, don’t bother wondering if Christensen might have had a point. Dodging the media after a tough loss and saying it was all about “academics?” You don’t want to appear to be anti-academics, do you? So when Calhoun says he wants redshirts and wants his players to be able to turn pro, don’t bother asking how someone who spent 4 of his 6 years on active duty as a football coach could have the all-out gall to pretend that it’s for the good of the service.
Fortunately, there is one person willing to take Troy Calhoun to task for his comments: Troy Calhoun. Of course, the “no excuses” Troy that threw his fellow Air Force coaches under the bus was 2-1 and just finished taking Oklahoma to the wire. NuTroy is 1-2 and coming off of his first losing season. I guess now that he’s having his own problems, he’s more sympathetic to their plight. Imagine that. Then again, by saying he wants redshirts he might as well stand in his own locker room and say “I can’t win with you guys.”
Winning is hard, and coaching is a high-pressure job. It’s completely understandable that any coach would want whatever edge he could get. At the very least you’d hope for a level playing field. The challenge of service academy football, and the very thing that makes it special, is that you aren’t going to get one. There are some lines that cannot be crossed. Anyone that truly cares about service– or the future careers of service academy athletes– would understand that.