Monday, December 3, 2012

Covering the Rick Majerus spectrum

Rick Majerus was a troubled individual, beset by his own personal demons, as we all are to lesser and greater degrees. Some will say he did the best he could. This is not any attempt to besmirch him. May he finally be in peace.

Seth Davis fondly remembers Rick Majerus.

But here's an alarming paragraph: "Majerus was more complicated than all these colorful anecdotes would suggest. He was charming, affable and available for national writers like myself, but the local beat guys couldn't stand him. You always heard horrible stories about Majerus' antics in practice, his treatment of people in the basketball office, especially his assistants. He belittled his players so badly that they transferred at an alarming rate. During one time-out huddle, he famously challenged a player's manhood by grabbing his testicles.

Bernie Miklasz also looks back, with deep and unabashed gratitude.

S.L. Price/Sports Illustrated wrote this lengthy piece back in 2008.

Here's an incident in which Majerus was just blatantly cruel: "... [Lance] Allred saw limited action as a freshman at Utah. He played in just 17 games, averaging 2.2 points and 1.8 rebounds in only 5.6 minutes per game. The following season (2001–02), his playing time increased slightly, but he continued to struggle. At the end of his sophomore year, he transferred to Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. After transferring, Allred accused Utah coach Rick Majerus of constant verbal abuse, usually focused on Allred's hearing impairment. Allred told The Salt Lake Tribune that Majerus had once said: "Lance, you've weaseled yourself through life using your hearing as an excuse. You're a disgrace to cripples. If I was a cripple in a wheelchair and saw [the way] you play basketball, I'd shoot myself." Two other Utah players confirmed some of what Allred claimed, but two assistant coaches said they never heard it. Majerus denied the allegations while describing the statements as "extremely insensitive." An investigation concluded that Majerus did not discriminate against Allred..."

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