Pac 12

How Bad is Chip Kelly's Prickly Interview Demeanor?

| by Dwight Jaynes
Rob Moseley’s blog for the Eugene Register-Guard yesterday featured some news conference stuff from Kelly, wherein he talks about his rather abrupt manner in many interviews.

(On his controversial demeanor during halftime and postgame TV interviews): They ask me questions, I give them answers. They wanted to know what I thought was wrong with my team, and I thought we won a football game by two points against a really good Cal team. You know, one thing that bothers me, when people ask questions, it always seems like, if we play a close game or we lose a game, we did something wrong. And no one ever gives credit to the other team. It first happened in my first game here, against Boise State. “What’s wrong with Oregon?” You know what, Boise State’s a really good team. Chris Petersen deserves a ton of credit for what he’s done with that program. Jeff Tedford deserves a ton of credit, and Clancy Pendergast the defensive coordinator, and the players at Cal deserve a ton of credit for how well they played against us. I get a kick out of, what’s wrong with us? There’s two teams out there. We’re a good football team, but we don’t actually control everything that goes on on the field. There’s some other good football players in this league. There’s some other good football players in the country.

Uh, here’s the deal, as I see it. The Bears, ever since Kevin Riley got hurt, stink. Stanford showed that. Oregon State showed that. Oregon didn’t. Naturally, the questions would be about Oregon — the Ducks are the top-ranked team in the country and won by two against a team everyone else is pounding these days.

I think the coach was prickly during those interviews because he wasn’t happy about the way the game was going. And get used to it — when you’re ranked No. 1, expectations go up. Everyone expects you to look and play like the best team in the country — it’s part of the deal.

Look, I think halftime interviews on the field are stupid, anyway. Nobody ever says anything worthwhile. So just smile, answer the question the best you can and move on. Getting abrupt and grumpy does nobody any good and reflects poorly on the program. Sometimes it’s just easier to play the silly game.

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And don’t forget how subjective this whole BCS thing is. Make too many enemies — particularly among those who have a vote — and you’ve cut your own throat in the long run.

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