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Archive for Tuesday, July 24, 2007

He’s heard it all before

Mangino fields familiar questions at media day

Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino answers a question. Mangino spent the day fielding queries - many of which he'd heard elsewhere - at  Big 12 Conference media days Monday in San Antonio.

Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino answers a question. Mangino spent the day fielding queries - many of which he'd heard elsewhere - at Big 12 Conference media days Monday in San Antonio.

July 24, 2007

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— In the grand scheme of things, Big 12 Conference football media days can be just a tad bit silly, can't they?

Here's Mark Mangino, coach of the Kansas University football team, at one of many stages set up all over the St. Anthony Hotel on Monday. He takes a swig of water, then says hello to the group gathered around him before speaking the absolute truth of the circus he's now swirling around in.

"You can't possibly ask me a question I haven't heard," Mangino quipped. "But that's OK. That's media day."

This indeed is media day, a nonstop chaotic scene of reporters, players and league officials gathered together in downtown San Antonio to kick off the 2007 college football season.

By the time the event wraps up Wednesday, all 12 of the league coaches will be on hand as well as roughly 35 players, including KU's Aqib Talib, Brandon McAnderson and Marcus Henry. All of them will have positives thoughts regarding the 2007 season, which makes the preseason heaven for fanatics everywhere.

The players - especially the outgoing Talib - all were in high demand Monday, but none quite like Mangino. The television reporters pepper KU's sixth-year coach with questions, most of which he had heard before. The sports-information directors check their watches to make sure he's on schedule. KU's three players lurk in the background, waiting to be told where to go next.

Reporter: What's your opinion of the Kansas-Missouri game being moved to Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City?

Mangino: I think with the landscape of college football the way it is now, you have to be willing to try new things.

He's heard that one before. After 45 minutes of similar questions and similar answers, Mangino is taken off of that podium to make room for Nebraska coach Bill Callahan.

Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino answers a question. Mangino spent the day fielding queries - many of which he'd heard elsewhere - at  Big 12 Conference media days Monday in San Antonio.

Kansas University football coach Mark Mangino answers a question. Mangino spent the day fielding queries - many of which he'd heard elsewhere - at Big 12 Conference media days Monday in San Antonio.

He's not done, though. Mangino is escorted down the hallway toward another room full of media types. A television station stops him on the way and asks two questions. He then says hello to Jackie Sherrill, a former college coach now amongst the media members. He then wiggles free and heads in to talk to more television guys.

It's an elaborate setup: Four podiums, four KU representatives. Ten minutes of interrogation, rotate, start it all again. Probably with the same questions.

Reporter: With the schedule the way it is, do you feel this is the year you need to make your move?

Mangino: Well, what's my move?

Mangino and other coaches occasionally bring humor to what can be a cliche-riddled day. He knows what the reporter is getting at, and he gives in and provides a clearer answer after a scattered chuckle.

"I don't know if this is the year we need to," Mangino said, "but I plan on it. I think our players do, too. I don't know if we need to, but we plan on doing it."

After the interviews address a number of topics from Talib's list of preseason honors to losing running back Jon Cornish to - big surprise here - who's going to start at quarterback, Mangino is whisked away again, this time toward the radio guys down the hall.

But, of course, not without getting interrupted. An Oklahoma writer stops him to inquire about defensive end Russell Brorsen, and another television crew asks questions that - get this - Mangino has heard before.

Before he sits down in the middle of a circle of radio microphones, Mangino positions himself behind two reporters interveiwing Talib and makes a yapping motion with his left hand, teasing his star cornerback about his talkative ways.

He then sits down and yaps himself. Talib was too busy talking to tease his coach back.

Reporter: How has recruiting improved?

Mangino: Just like the program. Slow and steady.

Nebraska media ask about the Kansas-Nebraska game on Nov. 3, which remains nine games away from Mangino's consciousness. A radio guy with broken English asks who Mangino would rather beat: Kansas State or Missouri?

"I'd rather win them all," Mangino responded, not taking the bait.

Questions about the football facility pour in. Questions about finishing close games are rattled off. Questions about KU's troubles on the road are directed toward him like they are every year.

"We're good at home," Mangino said. "The next step is to get good on the road."

Mangino patiently answers them all, though you wonder how a coach doesn't pull his hair right out of his scalp and run away from the madness.

Brandon McAnderson answers a question at Big 12 media day.

Brandon McAnderson answers a question at Big 12 media day.

Reporter: Are you okay with (Aqib Talib) sounding off every once in a while?

Mangino: He's a good kid. I think he plays around with the press a little bit. He's a really smart guy, and sometimes he gives you what you want. He plays that game with you.

On this day, Mangino's playing that game too. Time's almost up, but Mangino agrees to appear on a live radio show down the hall before calling it a day. Of course, he's stopped by another reporter en route, needing just a minute of his time. He obliges before heading into a room full of radio guys doing their live shows. On the way in, Mangino passes McAnderson, who's nose is buried in the new KU media guide.

When the eight-minute radio spot wraps up, the KU gang gathers to head toward the airport and back home to Lawrence. Mangino asks if Talib's tongue is now completely dry and answers a couple of more questions from a newspaper reporter before letting his voice have a much-needed rest.

Reporter: Some of the players said eight or nine wins was the number. What do you think?

Mangino: I was thinking 12.

An optimist. At the hectic Big 12 media days, that's really all there is.

Comments

Bone777 6 years, 9 months ago

"How does he wipe?"

I have heard that he tapes toilet paper to the banister and then slides on down...

For his weight, maybe a large 'lap band' would work.. Like a hula-hoop maybe.

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jonas 6 years, 9 months ago

"otto (Anonymous) says:

"You can't possibly ask me a question I haven't heard," Mangino quipped. "But that's OK. That's media day." Well Coach - What's your caloric intake per day, per hour?"

Right. I'm sure that he's NEVER heard that before. You are, in fact, so fiendishly clever as to be the first to ask a morbidly obese man about his dietary intake.

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jonas 6 years, 9 months ago

"Gootsie (Anonymous) says: At a minimum, the cleaners comments is tacky."

At more than that, it's an incredibly rude, childish, immature thing to say, that clearly invades whatever privacy he as a person is entitled too, and exposes the poster as nothing more than a malevolent child with nothing of any value to offer.

Might as well not mince words.

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spywell 6 years, 9 months ago

I was talking to some red shirts, and they were laughin about Bill. They said every time he has to go he has this special shower in his office to clean up with. Its not funny that hes this fat, he needs to make some decissions about his life and health and quick, before he's RIP, Bill Self.

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JoRight 6 years, 9 months ago

"And more importantly, how does he wipe?"

A friend of a friend type of deal again, but, by dangling a towel as far back as he can reach, then, grabbing it between his legs.

This is all speculation, but, it really intrigued me as well for some odd sick reason. . .or it just could of been us "dudes" discussing this at the bar over a (as Rome would say) few pops.

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Gootsie 6 years, 9 months ago

Coach_Eric, I think the pledge per dollar is a great idea. I just don't think he'd go along with it. Too bad too.

Now, let's stop with the weight remarks, don't you think? At a MINIMUM, the cleaners comments is tacky.

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topcity 6 years, 9 months ago

He wipes with all those dollar bills that Perkins gave him.

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stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 9 months ago

BABBOY He's not a very good coach... When teams consistently let games get away that they should win, that's poor coaching... And... I remember the thing with his son's football game and I agree... a damn poor showing on his part... And I agree... he has a very easy schedule this year and needs to win at least 8 or 9 games... if not, he should be gone... But... I still say he's a better man than these morons who post this crap here... this kind of crap about a person's weight and or appearance is indicative of the lowest of the low.

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ramsrevenge 6 years, 9 months ago

He's not that great of a man. The athletic department has warned him about his attitude off the field. He's had several incidents with employees of the department as well as the parking department. Apparently he thinks he can park in handicap spots and not be ticketed. With as much as he weighs they should reserve him a spot the furthest away from the door.

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Eric Neuteboom 6 years, 9 months ago

Congrats stuck, you're the first to play the "holier than thou" card!

Just to note too, recruits, analysts, high school coaches, opposing coaches, casual fans and others have all noticed his weight. In college sports, where the veil of "amateurism" is still present, image certainly matters and it can and does positively and negatively contribute to a school's national perception (ask yourself why coach Self, purportedly, wears a toupee). Having a coach so obese will negatively impact your program's reputation, fairly or not.

So why not at least try to eliminate one possible deterrent to landing that top recruit? Coach Mangino has, undoubtedly, greater access to dieticians, physicians and exercise equipment than anyone posting on here. The fact that he's not been able to improve his physical appearance (let alone his health) even a little bit makes me question whether or not he'll be able to ever successfully lead our football program.

Right or wrong, fair or not, he is severely overweight and it needs to be addressed (behind closed doors) either by him or by AD Perkins.

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BABBOY 6 years, 9 months ago

It is simple with Mangino. His weight is not an issue when he wins. Last year, not so good. This year he has an easy schedule. He had better win and go to bowl game. If he does, then he should get to keep his job. If not, then someone else should get a chance.

Stuckinthemiddle, I agree that his character and winning record should be the issue. I have not been to impressed with his character --- blaming the referrees for lossess and the whole thing with his kid and the high school game. I do not see the whole better man thing. He needs to win football games and not make a fool of himself in representing the school. Period.

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bobberboy 6 years, 9 months ago

Coach should change his name to Fatty McButterpants.

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bobberboy 6 years, 9 months ago

Whoa !! Mister Lard Buckets !!

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stuckinthemiddle 6 years, 9 months ago

He could weigh twice as much and he'd still be a better man than any of you morons fixated on his weight.

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otto 6 years, 9 months ago

"You can't possibly ask me a question I haven't heard," Mangino quipped. "But that's OK. That's media day." Well Coach - What's your caloric intake per day, per hour?

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thebigspoon 6 years, 9 months ago

I think that a 6 and 6 record this year will be a stretch. I see them winning the first 4 games and then a rough road after that.

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daddax98 6 years, 9 months ago

"And more importantly, how does he wipe?"

well according to a friend of a friend that works at one of the local dry cleaners...not very well (and he often dosen't wear underwear. yichk!)

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bangaranggerg 6 years, 9 months ago

"he's heard it all" except "you look healthy".

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ramsrevenge 6 years, 9 months ago

I don't get it. If you're a player, how do you respect a coach like that? When he's barking orders at you and telling you to get in shape, how do you not just yell at him and tell him to get his fat a** in shape? And more importantly, how does he wipe?

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Eric Neuteboom 6 years, 9 months ago

Still amazes me that Coach hasn't appeared to lose any weight. The man is morbidly obese.

I'd suggest a program similar to the one Maryland coach Ralph Friedgen used a few years back. Have the more well-heeled alumni pledge a dollar amount per pound Coach loses. Say, $10 a pound.

Could raise more money for the new football facilities and help Mangino get just that much healthier.

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