Thursday, September 22, 2005

'I'm No Expert' Says Drew Tate Seemed Stupid In TV Interview

A central Iowa man identified as “I’m No Expert” has been watching plenty of football already this season, and has more observations:


“The other day I hinted that Drew Tate may be overrated. On Saturday, however, he was terrific against UNI. He played like a pro. Of course, UNI was no powerhouse, so it’ll be interesting to see how he does when the Big Ten Conference season starts tomorrow. One thing is for sure. Tate is terrible on TV. That on-camera interview he gave on the field after the game was probably the worst in the annals of television…..”

[RON MALY’S COMMENTS: I wasn’t watching the Iowa-Northern Iowa telecast when the game ended. I had switched over to the Michigan State-Notre Dame game, which was much more interesting. So I didn’t get a chance to hear how bad Tate, the Iowa quarterback, was in his postgame interview. I e-mailed “I’m No Expert” and told him to go into more detail about the interview. Here was his reply:

In the post-game TV interview on the field, Tate hung his head and mumbled so badly that he could hardly be understood. His answers were vague, never on point. I suppose he was trying to appear modest, but he came across as stupid. You need to give him some pointers. I switched between the Iowa-UNI game and MSU-Notre Dame. I enjoyed both. I thought the Register failed to note strongly enough that Ferentz had second- and third-stringers in for much of the second half, although he did continue to use most of the first-string defensive line, moving lesser players in and out individually. Further, of course, [No. 2 quarterback Jason] Manson played a lot in the second half. I think the Hawkeyes could have pulled off another Ball State shellacking if they wanted to, so I doubt that the UNI game tells us much about [Saturday's game at Ohio State].”

[MORE FROM MALY: I’m going to give Tate the benefit of the doubt and say he was, indeed, attempting to appear modest in the postgame interview. I know one thing. He does like TV. He appeared fairly comfortable in front of numerous TV cameras and TV reporters when he met the press on media day in August. It was on that day, when asked by a reporter about newspapers, he snapped, “I don’t read newspapers.” So I’m assuming by that comment that he’s a huge fan of Internet columnists and TV and radio reporters. I do hope Tate loosens up in future interviews because, after all, he was picked the Big Ten’s preseason offensive player of the year and there was some thought that he might be on some Heisman Trophy “watch” lists at some point in his career. So far, though, he’s been no Nile Kinnick either on or off the field].


I referred to Jennifer Jones, a sportswriter from the Chicago Sun-Times, the other day while writing a column about Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz.

Jones asked Ferentz some dumb questions on the Big Ten coaches’ teleconference. Sharp guy that he is, the Hawkeye coach remained patient and carefully answered every one of Jones’ queries.

That column prompted this e-mail from Mark Robinson, a former Iowan who now lives in California:

“Jennifer Jones…..

“Well, we know those Illinois folks pay attention to Iowa because Iowa does get a few nice recruits from that great state, and they do pretty well here at Iowa on occasion.

“I think what you were trying to convey to your readers, Ron, is that this reporter should be working for CNN, or at very least, FOX NEWS, to be so naïve as to ask those questions. A high schooler might have done better. Or, maybe they should be reporting from Mars.

“Perhaps I’m wrong.

“Her tenure may be short, however. If she is good-looking, she will be on the sidelines, making big bucks any day now.

“Take care, Ron. And keep writing.”

[MALY AGAIN: That reporter will likely fit right in on the sideline at a future Hawkeye game, Mark. I was in the press box at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames, and not in front of a TV, when the Iowa-Iowa State game was being played. I’ve been told that the female sideline reporter called Cyclone coach Dan McCarney by the wrong first name when asking him a question. You’d think one thing someone assigned to a big-time game would know is the name of the home team’s coach. By the way, the photo included with this column [and the person who isn't Drew Tate] is of Jennifer Jones, the movie actress. I still haven’t been told if the Jennifer Jones of the Sun-Times looks anything like her. If she does, watch for her on the sideline in a stadium near you very soon. Either that or she'll be running the whole damn TV network!]


George, not his real name, from Swea City, not his real hometown, has something to say about Iowa State’s search for a new athletic director. Here’s his e-mail:

“I was right about one thing. Steve Burgason was a nominee for the AD job. He nominated himself.”

[RON MALY’S COMMENTS: Burgason, a former Iowa State basketball player, evidently tossed his own name into the hopper late in the job search. I understand he owns some businesses in Ames. Whatever he does, it wasn’t enough to impress those who did the hiring. Jamie Pollard, who had been the deputy athletic director at Wisconsin, got the job].


Bob Nicholas, who is simply “Uncle Bob” from Huntington Beach, Calif., in this column, checked in this week with another e-mail:


“Just a quick note to say hello again and get ready to root for another great Big Ten season. My young nephew, Scott Chandler, is getting some playing time with some great not-so-great results. He will probably become more of a positive factor as the year progresses.

“I met someone as the Orange County Iowa Club viewing of the UNI game last Saturday who said he knew you from the journalistic world in Iowa. I think he said his name was Don Mitchell. [I’m positive about his first name, but not sure about his last]. He was a transplant from California who joked about getting on the wrong train and ending up in Iowa. He studied journalism at Iowa, graduated in 1958 and worked in that arena for 12 years in Iowa. He then did a government job and ended up back in California. He goes back every year for homecoming with his fraternity brothers.

“I guess you’re more famous than you think; now you have two people in California who know who you are.

“Best regards, friend always, GO HAWKS!”

Uncle Bob from Huntington Beach

[RON MALY’S COMMENTS: Great hearing from you, Uncle Bob. Those journalists from Iowa are all over the place, aren’t they?]


An AP story on the WHO-TV website talks about a University of Iowa law professor saying the school is promoting homophobia. It says the professor will challenge whether the university is violating NCAA rules by painting the visitors’ locker room pink.

Erin Buzuvis moved to Iowa from Boston and discovered the visiting team’s locker room at Kinnick Stadium is pink—something she says promotes sexism and homophobia.

But school officials say they won’t change the pink walls—a tradition started by former Iowa coach Hayden Fry. Recent stadium renovations added more pink items to the locker room, including lockers, sinks and urinals.

Buzuvis plans to speak with a school committee compiling a report on Iowa’s compliance with NCAA regulations.

[RON MALY’S COMMENTS: As far as I’m concerned, much too much attention is paid to the pink in the visitors’ locker rooms at Kinnick Stadium. Sure, former Michigan coach Bo Schembechler had the pink walls covered with wrapping paper the day before the Wolverines played a game in Iowa City and, sure, other coaches refer to the pink. The fact that they’re even talking about the pink, I guess, gets the point across that the visitors’ locker room color is…..well, different. But I can’t believe the color of the sinks has anything to do with how a team plays on the field. If you’ve got a talented quarterback, some speedy wideouts and a strong defense, your team will probably win—whether the sink is pink or not. All I know is that, whenever I have to take a leak, I don’t bother checking to see if the urinal is pink or purple. My bladder and kidneys don’t ask, either].


I won’t bother reading “Outrage, Passion, and Uncommon Sense: How Editorial Writers Have Taken On and Helped Shape the Great American Issues of the Past 150 Years.” No need to check it out at the library, either. They’d probably try to charge me $4 to park at the library if they knew I was looking for that book.


E-mailer Bud Appleby of Des Moines writes:

“The second paragraph of a two-paragraph story on the Roosevelt game [at Council Bluffs Jefferson] in Saturday’s paper said:

“’Further details and statistics on Roosevelt’s victory were not made available to the Des Moines Register late Friday night.’

“They are trying to make it sound like it was the fault of somebody else.”

[RON MALY’S COMMENTS: I laughed at that one, too. There was a brief four-paragraph story buried at the bottom of Page 3 of the Sunday paper with a few details about the game. Earlier in the season, the local paper relied on the Council Bluffs Nonpareil for its coverage of Des Moines-area teams, declining to send a reporter to the game. But, obviously, no reporter was assigned to the Roosevelt game, and the bosses at the local paper didn’t line up coverage from the Council Bluffs paper. Horrible].


When Purdue won at Arizona. 31-24, last Saturday night, it ran for 239 yards on the ground and didn’t throw a touchdown pass for the first time in 16 games. But coach Joe Tiller laughed when asked if his team’s personality has changed.

“We still play sissy ball at Purdue,” he joked.

At least I think he was joking. We’ll find out when Iowa plays at Purdue on Oct. 8.

Vol. 4, No. 380
Sept. 22, 2005