Every-thing Sports

The wussification of America continues

During Michigan state's first round win over Bradley in the NCAA tournament, head coach Tom Izzo was seen getting very angry and going after freshman forward Aaron Henry. Henry was giving what Izzo referred to as a lack of effort. By now you've all seen the clip or heard a version of what happened so I won't go into too much more detail. The outcry after the incident against Izzo would have you thinking he was a criminal or worse. It got me thinking about how soft we've gotten as a society, especially when it comes to being corrected.

What Henry and Izzo called coaching, most of the people who weighed in on the situation said it was uncalled for, unnecessary, a hole behavior, etc. You get the picture. To me, this was just a moment in which a man in charge of young men and their growth decided to have a teaching moment that happened to be caught on the national stage. Nowadays, everyone is so sensitive to being corrected, told they've done something wrong, be criticized, or anything remotely negative. Quite frankly, I'm sick of it!

This is an extension of the wussification of America. John Granato wrote about the drama queens in sports last month and I couldn't agree with him more. He came at it with the approach that we know too much about the behind the scenes drama and ancillary things about athletes these days. Back in the day, we wouldn't have known any of that stuff and wouldn't have cared. Now, we have a 24 hour or less news cycle and social media that constantly need feeding.

Part of the problem lies in the fact that kids are raised differently these days. Back in my day (I know, I know), we got ass whippings. I used to get in trouble so much, I knew how to get a whipping and not have it hurt as much. I even perfected fake crying and being dramatic. I knew I was next level when I would use psychology to get out of trouble.

These days, kids have safe spaces. Parents are afraid to be hard on their kids because they're being told it will harm their kids' psychologically and stunt their emotional growth. That's the biggest load of crap I've heard in some time! I got my ass whipped and turned out just fine! I got fussed at and criticized when I messed up and ended up more mentally tough than most. I didn't let adversity turn me into a crying little bitch. No. I used that adversity, the criticism, the hard times, created a Texas-sized chip on my shoulder, and led all of that to motivate me into the person you see.

People tell my wife and I how well-mannered or well-behaved our kids are all the time. "They can come over any time" or other iterations of that phrase has been told to us numerous times over the years. Why? Because we raised them to be respectful, thoughtful, and we're hard enough on them to ensure they are ready for how tough the real world can be. Are they truly ready? Only time will tell. They're still teenagers, but they have a better foundation than some of these entitled spoiled brats.

A well-placed tongue lashing, a good ass whipping, and some tough love could have made some of today's athletes much better, or easier to tolerate. What if Kevin Durant wasn't so sensitive to twitter comments? What if Antonio Brown handled his grievances behind the scenes? What if Jonathan Martin had slapped the crap out of Richie Incognito? Have you ever thought about what the news cycle would look like had social media been around when Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Babe Ruth, Lawrence Taylor, or some other all-time greats were in their heyday?

I didn't write this as a pity party, to brag on our parenting skills, to bash current athletes, or to brag on how things were back in my day. I wrote this to bring attention to how soft we've gotten as a society and how it's bled over into sports. If you can't see the parallels between sports and society, you've got worse eyesight than Stevie Wonder. It's time we woke up. Not every criticism is an insult. Not every correction is an indictment. Sometimes we need tough love in order to reach our greatest potential. We need to realize that being pushed is better than being pulled or left behind. When we do, society, and sports, will all be better for it.

Are Buzz Williams and the Aggies No. 1?

Fresh off a run to the championship game by Texas Tech and some high profile recent coaching hires in both football and basketball, the state of Texas appears to be in great shape when it comes to Division I college coaching duos. We ranked each sport, then took the total. The lower the score, the better. It's a pretty impressive group. We stayed with the six biggest programs (SMU would be No. 7, but there simply is not enough to go on to rank beyond that). Here is how your duo stacks up:

6) Baylor (10 points)

Baylor v Syracuse

Getty Images

Scott Drew (fifth in the basketball rankings) has built a perennial tournament team at Baylor, but they have never been able to get past the Elite Eight. Still, he has been very good. Matt Ruhle (fifth among football coaches) took over a mess of a program and after a one-win season got the Bears to a bowl game last year and could take another step this year.

5) TCU (9)

TCU football coach Gary Patterson Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Gary Patterson (3) has been one of the best coaches in the state for a long time and the Frogs are lucky to have him. Jamie Dixon (6) put up a resume as impressive as anyone's at Pitt but has missed the NCAAs twice in two years at TCU.

4) Texas Tech (7)

Chris Beard. Sarah Stier/Getty Images

It's hard to argue with Chris Beard (1) as the top coach in the state, considering he was just minutes from a title and there is no reason to think he can't continue to thrive. Matt Wells (6) was an off-season hire who came off a 10-win season at Utah State but also had only three winning seasons in six years there and this is a tough step up.

2t) Texas (6)

University of Texas football coach Tom Herman Tim Warner/Getty Images

The Longhorns might have found the right guy in Tom Herman (2) for football, as Texas already has a New Year's Six win, his second as a head coach in the state. Shaka Smart (4) has been a mixed bag at the school, but is one of only three coaches in the state with a Final Four appearance.

2t) Houston (6)

Kelvin Sampson. Bob Levey/Getty Images

Kelvin Sampson (2) has engineered a remarkable turnaround with the basketball team with two straight appearances and a bright future. He also has a Final Four in his past. He has taken four different schools to the tournament. Dana Holgorsen (4) did well in a tough place at West Virginia and should thrive at Houston. He remains one of the best play callers in college football.

1) Texas A&M (4)

Jimbo Fisher and the Aggies debuted with a win. Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Jimbo Fisher (1) has scoreboard with a football national title at Florida State. He did a nice job in his first year at A&M and the future looks incredibly bright, although there will always be that pesky Alabama, LSU and Auburn to deal with. Buzz Williams (3) was a home run hire who had success in a tough Big East and then the rugged ACC. Aggie basketball should be a factor for years to come.

The basketball rankings

1) Beard

2) Sampson

3) Williams

4) Smart

5) Drew

6) Dixon

I had a tough time ranking 4-6, so I went to college basketball A.J. Hoffman, and this is how he ranked them.

The football rankings

1) Fisher

2) Herman

3) Patterson

4) Holgorsen

5) Ruhle

6) Wells

This one seemed a lot more clear cut, although you could make arguments among the top three. Would you trade your duo for any of these?

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