Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Andy Reid was lying.

He knew it. The media knew it. Any casual fan paying the remotest attention knew it.

Reid is now the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs. He spent the last 14 years as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. The Chiefs play the Eagles, in Philadelphia no less, tomorrow night.

The obvious question for Reid is what it will be like to play against the Eagles. The obvious answer is something like: "I had a great experience there. We did a lot of great things. They fired me last year. I want to beat them badly. I've had this game circled since the schedule came out."

Something like that.

Instead, Reid said all the expected things, how the game is what matters, it's not about him, blah, blah, blah.

What would have been the sin of answering honestly?

Then again, TigerBlog doesn't understand why media people don't call out coaches when they are either lying or are acting as if the media people don't get it when the questioning turns to something other than what they want to say. Why didn't someone say to Reid: "are you honestly saying that you have no special emotions about this game?" or even "hey, Andy, nobody here is buying it."

How about last week, when reporters were asking Alabama's universally loathed football coach Nick Saban about reports of violations. Saban went into "I will talk about the game" mode rather than admitting that he at least understood why someone might have the temerity to ask.

Why didn't someone say: "Hey, Nick, do you get it at all?"

Of course, that would require the backing of the higher ups at whatever publication it was, something that was insanely lacking on the part of one South Carolina newspaper. Did you see this story?

How could any self-respecting reporter work for The State, knowing that the publisher would do that to one of their own? And what does it say about the influence that the football coach can have over a state, not that anything bad could ever come of that, well, er, um, you know what TB is talking about.

Anyway, TB digresses.

Despite Reid's unwillingness to be honest about his emotions in returning to Philadelphia, TigerBlog will still be rooting for the Chiefs in this one.

First, he never roots for the Eagles. Unless they're playing the Yankees, which they don't usually do.

Two, the Chiefs have Mike Catapano, the Princeton alum who is a rookie defensive lineman for the team.

Reid's return to Philadelphia comes a few days before the Princeton women's soccer team hosts William & Mary. That game will be Sunday at 1 and is the only home soccer game of the weekend.

Princeton coach Julie Shackford is a William & Mary alum, which makes it somewhat similar to the Reid vs. the Eagles storyline, except that she didn't play at William & Mary last year or anything like that.

In fact, this will be the fifth time Shackford coaches against her alma mater, though her own college coach, John Daly, is still the Tribe head coach today. That has to make it even more emotional.

As for the rest of the Princeton coaching staff, there are many examples of those who coach against their alma maters. Actually, it happens way more than TigerBlog thought it did before he actually looked into it.

Harvard alum Chris Sailer does it every year in women's lacrosse. United States Naval Academy grad Luis Nicolao does as well in men's water polo.

Courtney Banghart goes head-to-head with Dartmouth, her alma mater, twice each year. Up until this point, she has been coaching against Chris Wielgus, who had been her head coach in college.

Penn alum Fred Samara has coached against the Quakers in track and field and cross country for decades. The men's hockey coach, Bob Prier, is a St. Lawrence grad.

The women's golf team, headed by alum Nicki Cutler, is competing this weekend at Vanderbilt's tournament. Susan Teeter has coached the women's swimming and diving team against Tennessee. Scott Bradley has coached Princeton against North Carolina many times in baseball; Lisa Sweeney coached against Lehigh twice in softball last spring.

TigerBlog isn't sure if he's missed anyone. If he has, he apologizes.

And hey, he can relate to the whole concept of competing against the alma mater.

He's happy to know he's part of a long list of Princeton traitors.

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