But that is not going to happen. Oh, Tiger Woods will is dating an Olympic skier, but the media is not about to forget this story. Even Andy Enfield’s hiring at USC stands in its shadow, and his wife is not about to release any new bikini shots this week.
No, Larry Scott must deal with this headache. Clearly, from Goodman’s source, it is apparent that at least one of the referees did not believe that Rush’s comments were made in jest. Nor do I.
If Rush had made the off-hand comment once about a coach in general, I might be inclined to believe him. It might be a relatively inappropriate comment, but in the lockerroom world of sports, with a leader (Rush) talking to his charges (the refs), you could at least understand the attempt at levity. Inappropriate? Yes. But not corrupt.
However, Rush specified one coach, Sean Miller. And he designated a coach who had yet to earn a technical foul all season, who has no reputation as being a screamer or a ref-baiter. Also, Rush made this offer on two different days. Either he believed this was one hilarious joke or he meant something by it. And that any referee –whose future assignments are based on the whims of Rush – might interpret them as not being in jest, that there was even a door open for uncertainty, is all that you need here.
And by the way, what “steps” did Larry Scott take to ensure that it does not happen again? Why were those steps not already in place? And was Rush fined at all for his transgression?
That all of this happened in Las Vegas, a city where betting on sports –including college sports – is legal, only adds another dollop of questions to this flaming pie.
Larry Scott has a problem. A couple of them, actually. First, as I type this, he has a Director of Officiating whose integrity is in question. Remember, it’s not whether Rush said what he did. It’s whether we are supposed to buy that he was kidding, even though kidding only slightly amelioriates the gravity of Rush’s indiscretion.
As Goodman’s source told him, “(Ed’s) a bully. He just bullies everyone. That was his whole tenor of the meeting on Friday. We’re all afraid of him.”
Remember, referees are literally paid to interpret what they see. So you’ve got to give a referee the benefit of the doubt –or at least I choose to –that he is fairly deft at interpreting what he hears, as well.
Larry Scott’s second problem? Our assessment of his own integrity and leadership skills. No, Scott did not commit the transgression, but it appears as if he attempted to hide it from public view. As has long been said, it’s the cover-up, not the crime. Ask Richard Nixon. Or Jim Tressel.
“Pac” is short for Pacific, which is an ocean but is also an adjective. It means “peaceful in character or intent.” These are anything but pacific hours at Pac-12 headquarters.