-Bumped. BN Eds.
By focusing much of the post game discussion on "the handshake", the media is throwing Jim Mora into the "briar patch" -- a place from which he can easily escape. Mora's position on the handshake is defensible -- people may disagree -- but the discussion is sufficiently subjective and abstract as to have no real implications for his tenure.
The real focus should be on the game and how it reflects the season long weaknesses in the program for which he is CEO. Letting him squirm away from a season of underachievement -- a season in which he and his staff were out coached in almost every game -- and a season where we had a significant talent advantage, that was not put to good use, in all games save 1 (Oregon), is not excusable.
I really do not care whether he was a "mean girl" when dealing with Snyder. I do care that KSU's staff joined the many others that figured us out, quickly, and ate our lunch -- game after game.
I care that the brilliance we saw in the first half was not visible or sustained for the entire season. That the lack of discipline was. That there appears to be no more accountability in FB than there is in BB. That "going" conservative and playing not to lose is our calling card. That the coordinators he has selected cannot make needed adjustments so that once the other team does, we are stuck.
I care that we wasted the talent of some incredible kids who saved Mora's bacon, game after game, but got little in terms of coaching to improve their skills in return.
For all who want to rag on Brett Hundley -- he is the reason that Mora will be retained and probably get a raise.
How can that happen? Because, the focus of the debate will be on the handshake and not the meat and potatoes of the game and season.
I am thrilled that we won. Our players deserved it.
But, I take no comfort in our 10-3 season. Sure it looks good -- but as has been the mantra here -- it should have been much more. Just look at the first half.
Why don't I revel in that record? It goes back to a lesson I learned when I was a young lawyer. I was at a conference of plaintiffs lawyers -- trial lawyers -- some of my favorite people. Long ago, a $1 million verdict was rare. And, some of the lawyers who achieved them would strut like peacocks. Not Russ Herman of New Orleans -- a man I think the best trial lawyer in America. Russ took me aside and said "You want to know how to get a million dollar verdict?" "Yes!", I said. "Take a $10 million case and fuck it up". I have never forgotten that.
By allowing Jim Mora to hide in the briar patch of the handshake we are enabling him to escape the story of this season -- a season that failed to deliver on its promise and potential. He took a potential 12 win season and fucked it up.