Washington State has a case to make the College Football Playoff this season, and Cougars head coach Mike Leach is always a riot to listen to at press conferences. Add those things together, sprinkled in with more national attention, and you get some social media gold to chuckle at each week.
So after some teams fought each other on the field last weekend, a brilliant questions was asked to the Cougars’ veteran offensive guru: If every Pac-12 coach was involved in an all-out brawl, who would win?
“Shoot, I don’t know,” Leach said initially.
But give the 57-year-old Leach an inch sometimes, and he will take it a mile and a half down a road of obscurity that we all wish to travel at some point.
Who would win in a fight between all 12 coaches in the league? Here is Leach’s take:
Kyle Whittingham (Utah), Herm Edwards (Arizona State)
Both are past their athletic primes, obviously, but so is everyone else. The point is, according to Leach anyway, that the 58-year-old Whittingham, a former linebacker, and 64-year-old Edwards, a former defensive back, are both still active and in shape to take down the competition.
“At this age, if you’re in shape, you got a chance,” Leach said. “They’re both in great shape. They’re both in shape, they both exercise. They have a successful background as far as conditioning. Both are defensive guys, where defensive players play tough and physical.”
Not bad selections, Mr. Leach. Not bad at all.
The Dark Horse
Mario Cristobal (Oregon)
An NFL career wasn’t in the cards for Cristobal like it was for Edwards and Whittingham, but he sure was a solid player for the Miami Hurricanes during the glory days under Hall of Fame coach Jimmy Johnson. Not only was he around for two national titles in college, but he also was an All-Big East offensive tackle.
“You don’t want to get tied up with him,” Leach explained. “You don’t want him to get his hands on him because he is big and he’s got long leverage. You don’t want him to get those things on you. He would be dangerous, though. There’s no question. Formidable, for sure.”
Of all of the coaches in the Pac-12, this would like be most everyone’s favorite, but not to Leach, or anyone who is brilliant like him.
The Real Winner
Mike Leach (Washington State)
This is just so obvious and true. There’s no way Whittingham, Edwards, or Cristobal want a piece of Leach. Neither does Mike Macintyre (Colorado), Jonathan Smith (Oregon State), Chris Petersen (Washington), Kevin Sumlin (Arizona), Justin Wilcox (California), David Shaw (Stanford), Clay Helton (USC) or Chip Kelly (UCLA). He’s the ultimate wild card.
“I don’t really care if they get ticked off because actually, privately, I think I would, but we’re going to be more modest than that,” Leach said.
No need to be modest, coach. The college football world has your back.