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Musings on Mangino: The Future of KU Football

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Our KU friend Hiphopopotamus free-styled some brilliance on this subject yesterday and it's an absolute must-read if you want to understand why Mangino's days are numbered.

KU AD Lew Perkins (himself a former 400 pounder - what is the Jayhawk fascination with gluttony?) is making a paper trail that Hansel and Gretel couldn't miss.

What will seal it for Mangino is the piling on of former players. Once a process takes on a certain momentum and the public perception of the coach becomes calcified, there's nothing to be done.

To wit:

Former Kansas wide receiver Raymond Brown, a senior last season, said Mangino would often "say personal, hurtful, embarrassing things in front of people." Brown cited two examples. He said that once, his younger brother had been shot in the arm in St. Louis. Then came a game. I dropped a pass and [Mangino] was mad," Brown said. "And I said, 'Yes, sir. Yes, sir.' The yelling didn't bother me. But then he said, 'Shut up!' He said, 'If you don't shut up, I'm going to send you back to St. Louis so you can get shot with your homies.

I once asked Henry James this very question below:

Brown said another teammate had confided in the team that his father was an alcoholic and the player dreamed of becoming a lawyer. One day, [Mangino] said in front of the entire team, 'Are you going to be a lawyer or do you want to become an alcoholic like your Dad?' " Brown said.

Except instead of alcoholic, I used the word pederast. And instead of your Dad, I used the words "your local mailman." And instead of lawyer, I used the words "moderately successful financial services professional." So in retrospect, I asked him a very different question.

When bleed-for-the-program types like former LB Joe Mortensen turn on you, you're truly done:

[Mangino] was ruthless, to be honest with you. What goes around, comes around," Mortensen said. "We were afraid if we said something he would hurt us with the [pro] scouts. But these incidents were day after day after day for years. And now it's finally coming out. Mortensen said Mangino told him he had been a bad friend to someone who had died. And that Mangino would repeatedly bring up his public intoxication citation. He told me he'd send me back to Oakland where I could be drinking out of a brown paper bag," Mortensen said. "He told me, 'You were a s---- friend to someone I knew that passed away.' He called me a bum. He showed me no respect. He told me he'd send me back to the ghetto.

Lots of threats in this article about "sending players back to ghettoes" from Mangino. Very Himmler. But ghettoes can be a happy place. Didn't he ever watch Good Times?

So what does Mangino say in his defense?

I have been in this conference for nearly 20 years, and what I can tell you is that our coaching intensity does not largely differ from the other Big Eight and Big 12 teams that I have observed. We have handled this program in terms of intensity and holding players accountable the same since 2002 to today. Nothing's changed. Absolutely nothing has changed.

Every word Mangino just said above is probably true. Care to guess the programs he observed prior to coming to Kansas? KSU under Bill Snyder and OU under Bob Stoops. Fruit doesn't fall far from the coaching tree.

He's done.

So what does it mean for Kansas? The Kansas is now doomed and will return to total football irrelevance default internet opinion strikes me as Ill-Informed and Reactionary - the internet Pikeys' two favorite coursing hounds. Hiring coaches is a risky business, but Kansas is still a reasonable Division I job and Glen Mason had a little success there before Terry Allen transformed KU again into a gridiron wasteland. With Mangino's bowl success and that magical 12-1 season, the school has been fundamentally changed in its culture and approach to that pesky Fall gap between basketball seasons. They now see football as a necessary and desirable endeavor, worthy of support and financing.

I'd call Turner Gill. He knows the terrain and he strikes me as ready. Maybe Kansans want John Riggins. I don't know their favorite sons. As long as the next coach does Px-90 and has no history of berating parking attendants, they're off to a good start. If they make a solid hire, they'll be just fine. If they don't, they're done for ten years.

Part II is here.