ABC blew it. Following the biggest upset of the college football season – UCLA’s 13-9 defeat of #2 USC – the network first interviewed the losing head coach (Celebrity/Coach Pete Carroll), then seemingly could not get a close-up camera to UCLA coach Karl Dorrell. ABC sideline reporter Lisa Salters interviewed Dorrell but we barely saw him. He was shown from a couple of distant camera views but never the kind of close-up Carroll got.
My wife, who knows more about TV than I do, told me not to make anything big of the mis-step, saying the upset was so stunning the network just may have had its cameras in the wrong place. But the Conspiracy Guy in me still wondered: What’s up with that???
Dorrell was 6-5 going into the game, and on the proverbial hot seat. Not only did he save his own job. But just maybe he orchestrated college football’s “Doug Williams moment.” Williams’s courageous and dominating performance in leading Washington’s triumph in Super Bowl XXII forever erased any doubts about the ability of black QBs to win on pro football’s grandest stage. Now, with so many openings in college football and so few non-white head coaches – just 5 of 119 – maybe the fourth-year UCLA coach showed that non-white men can coach this game, too, and win when it matters most.
One man whose phone should definitely ring this week: UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker , who coached under Carroll with the New England Patriots and at USC. His plan was brilliantly conceived and executed. (Props to Carroll for giving Walker credit on national TV.) USC scored 66 points on the Bruins alst seasomn. But this time around, UCLA stymied the Trojans at every turn. USC was held to a paltry 55 yards rushing and failed to score at least 20 points for the first time since the 2001 Las Vegas Bowl. That a 63-game string snapped.
If Walker isn’t snapped up soon, there should be an investigation.
Are you guys listening in Miami, Alabama and elsewhere – like my alma mater, Stanford! – there are openings?
Gamer: Karl Dorrell.