Karl Dorrell has two options for his legacy at UCLA -- going out with class, or forever being branded a whiner.
Many people have defended Karl Dorrell over the years by saying that he is a fine person, an upstanding human being, and a quality man. For years, that was all Dorrell could hang his had on. After all, he certainly didn't have the on-field results that most would like, but he was a nice enough person that many overlooked his seemingly-poor coaching.
However, in Dorrell's fifth (and hopefully final) year, he has shredded his "class act" reputation by doing several things:
1. Stated he is underpaid during the "Karl Dorrell: In My Own Words" program on Fox Sports.
2. Playing the race card during an interview with Kurt Streeter, whether intentional or not. . . then waiting for several days before clearing up any perceived inaccuracies.
Now he has taken to the UCLA student newspaper, the Daily Bruin, to fight his case. Karl Dorrell, the coach who proclaimed before the season started that THIS YEAR would be the defining year for his program -- the year that the Bruins had a good chance to win the Pac 10.
Or did they?
According to Dorrell in today's Daily Bruin special football insert, that was all a myth.
DB Reporter: When do you think you'll get to the point where the foudnation will be completely set? [in response to Dorrell's previous comment of, "I hate to say it, but the guy who was before me screwed it up for me. And I had to clean it up and then rebuild."]
Dorrell: Next year. We had a small recruiting class this year and some of our best players redshirted. Our best linebacker in the class redshirted; our best tight end redshirted. I'm talking about what we're playing with and what we currently have in the program. We have a lot of talent that redshirted this year...And we've got a highly ranked recruiting class coming in for next year, so all those players will give us a pretty big boost.
Excuse me? It's hard for me to believe that Dorrell believes the crap he's spewing at this point, as he's in truly in Lavin-esque form, spinning at a magical level. First, Koach Klassy throws Bob Toledo under the bus, but then has the audacity, after pointing to THIS year as *the* year, to say that it's really next year? What about the year after, or the year after that? Truly outrageous.
Dorrell almost manages to outdo the tragicomedy of his last comment by responding to the ads in the Daily Bruin placed by the DumpDorrell.com people:
Dorrell: "I'm disappointed because, as a UCLA alum [sic], I would never act that way...And I was disappointed that an alumnus would do this."
He would never act what way? Place blame? Certainly he's done his fair share of that (Axman, Kerr, and Svoboda ring some serious bells).
And finally, he ends with this gem:
Dorrell: "Now, this year I know we all had the expectations of really having a special team and for one reason or another it didn't work out that way. But I'm not a complainer...I don't want [the players] to think that coach is making excuses and a guy who doesn't take responsiblity...And that's what I had to overcome when I came back here because there was a coach who took all the glory but places all the blame on others."
I'll let that last comment speak for itself.
Dorrell had the opportunity to go out with his classy reputation in tact. He had the chance to be remembered as someone who, while not the most dynamic or winningest coach, was a coach of character.
However, like too many other opportunities during Dorrell's tenure, this is another opportunity wasted.