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Big Ten Media Day: An Uncensored Running Diary

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Pat Janssen is back to give his uninterrupted and unfiltered thoughts on the Mike Riley press conference at Big Ten Media Days

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Bruce Thorson-USA TODAY Sports

It's time for a live and uncensored running diary. This time, it's Coach Riley's Big Ten Media Days press conference. It's been a while since I've done one of these, but we've had some fun with this in the past, so we decided to break the gimmick out once again (follow along here). Alright, it's time for this pinstriped silver fox to take the stage!

0:07: Did anyone tell the sound guys in Chicago that this is a coaches' press conference and not a Rolling Stones concert? Where's this guy when you need him?

0:10: Seriously, was the Hilton ballroom booked up, and the only option left was midcourt at the United Center?

0:11: Maybe everyone in the league is tired of Lee Barfknecht's bullshit and decided to book the biggest place possible in hopes of being able to avoid him?

0:15: Coach Riles (can I call you that, Coach?) is so damn refreshing. He's talking about how because he'd been at one place for so long that he had forgotten about the "newness" in coaching.

0:16: I hope he never loses that new coach smell. I've got a 2012 model Tim Miles that I still love, but it's starting to get some tread on it. I promise I'll do a better job of taking care of my 2015 Riley.

0:35: "The spring game itself was very interesting to me. We had quite a few people show up for that." Mike Riley is not one for hyperbole, so I'll make a grandiose statement on his behalf. MIKE RILEY IS THE KING OF UNDERSTATEMENT!

0:47: Speaking about the spring game atmosphere: "Outside of the stadium it looked like a big family picnic to me." Meh, I'd disagree. It's going to take a hell of a lot more drinking and unhealthy red meat for it to be classified a Janssen family outing.

1:00: Riles (seriously, I hope that's ok, Coach) says the players believe in each other and the place they've chosen as much as they ever have. We all know he didn't intend it this way, but can we at least pretend that was a shot at Bo? Seriously, Dirk, can you make this happen? I love this guy, but we're really missing out on the drama.

3:00: "Anybody want to ask us about what we're doing?" The best and most down-home way to ask for questions.

3:14: And the first question comes from....HONDO S. CARPENTER! He created and writes for Spartan Nation (unfortunately, not affiliated with SB Nation). I wonder what the S stands for. Is he that big of Michigan State guy that his middle name actually is Spartan? Did he read (or worse yet, watch and pretend to read) Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and decide he needed to live like Hunter S. Thompson? Somebody's got to get on the mystery of the S! Actually, someone first needs to get on the mystery of how he got the name Hondo.

3:34: This was Mike Riley's initial answer to the question of "Why Nebraska and why now?"

3:55: Turns out Wife Riley (her name is Dee) really pushed Coach to consider the Nebraska gig. I guess Dee's nuts for Nebraska. I'm sorry. I'll show myself the door.

4:15: "This is a great place. I have information about the people who are there that I really liked."

4:25: "We said we had time for one more big adventure in our life. So here I am in Chicago at the Big Ten Meeting with a new tie on and excited about a new adventure." If Dee ever lets you down, I'm here for you, Coach. I don't expect that, though, because a man of your caliber would never pick a bad mate.

4:37: Jason Galloway of the Wisconsin State Journal is the next person with a question. His question is like a flip phone compared to the other guy's iPhone of a question.

4:50: Coach Riles (for real, I don't want to offend you, Coach) answers Galloway's question about Paul Chryst and turns it into a 50-second education on the World League (where they first met). I have just paused the press conference and spent a solid 15 minutes researching the WLAF. I think I now want a San Antonio Riders jersey for my birthday.

6:19: Next person to ask a question is Mike Welch from The Ticket, and the two men had an interaction that looked, shall we say, awkward? Have you ever been around when an ex-husband comes to pick up his children and the guy who opens the door for him at his old house is his ex-wife's new beau? It was that kind of awkward. Maybe I'm reading into things too much, but Coach's usually chipper body language just threw up a huge coat of armor. Either way, I've been watching this clip like the Zapruder film for about six straight minutes.

6:30: Ok, Coach is back to his jovial ol' self. Maybe he just has resting cuckhold face.

6:31: He's talking about the values of a program. Veiled shot at Bo? Ah crap, not quite. He's saying they didn't really have to make any cultural changes.

7:30: OH NO! He just said the word PROCESS!

7:45: "We really don't have to pay much attention to the past. We just go forward."

7:55: Stewart Mandel definitely did not get the Mike Welch treatment. If we're sticking with our divorced husband analogy, Coach greeted him like the hot woman at the bar who's going to take his mind off that filthy, no-good, cheating ex-wife of his.

8:00: For the record, I don't believe Dee would ever cheat on Coach. WHY WOULD ANYONE EVER ABANDON THAT ADORABLE RECRUITING GENIUS?

8:17: Anyone who worries that Coach Riley is going to be like Bill Callahan, or who just wants to hear some great talk on coaching philosophy, should just start the video here and listen for the next two minutes.

10:17: Jourdan Rodrigue of the Center Daily Times tells Coach Riley that he's perceived as one of the nicest guys in college football, and Coach responded by nearly breaking the modesty meter. He seems genuinely embarassed. Of course, everything he does is done genuinely. I bet he makes his bed genuinely.

10:20: Rodrigue asks if Coach feels the need to give himself an "edge" so he can "compete this level."

10:21: I'm really starting to hope Coach buys into this idea. I want to see Riles (this really fits now) start wearing a leather jacket, riding onto the field on a Harley, smoking cigarettes on the sideline and telling off-color jokes about the female anatomy at press conferences. Michael Dice Riley!

10:23: And then he goes and gives me some more of that "aww shucks" lovability. Stay you, Coach Riley!

10:25: "I just hope they see a guy who loves what he does."

11:35: "Never be a phony. They'll see right through it."

12:05: Hey, media member, if you're going to ask a question about the quarterback situation that's already been asked, identify yourself so I can mercilessly make fun of you! However mumbly she may have been, Jourdan Rodrigue at least had to the guts to say her name before asking Coach if he needed to become the Fonz to win championships.

13:22: Coach is answering a question about scouting new conference opponents, and all I noticed was that he had to clean a boog off his nose. Please don't rely on my for on-point analysis.

14:38: Tim May gets to ask the last question. He says he's from the Columbus Dispatch but he sounds like he's the gator wrasslin' beat writer for the Picayune-Times.

15:59: And that's it. Sixteen minutes with the greatest man this generation has ever known. He may have been talking about how the Pac-12 and the Big Ten aren't that different, but all I could hear was, "I am your coach, and I will make you proud. You should also come over and hang out sometime. I'll have Dee make some cookies."

Pat can regularly be heard on the Big Red Cobcast (@bigredcobcast).