Sports is a business that never makes sense if we try to
look at it as caring adults.
A class of 100 students on ASU’s campus heard the news of
Lisa Love’s firing and broke out into huge applause. As
soon as the first tweet went out regarding Love’s demise,
I was retweeted with countless, “What took so long?”
Imagine getting one of those e-mails at work that
announce: “Fred has decided to pursue other career
opportunities.” As Fred clears his desk and the e-mail
circulates through the company, Fred hears spontaneous
cheers erupt throughout the building.
It’s really sad that we treat other human beings this way.
In my business, you can’t give your opinions for four
hours a day without some people hating you. Since every
radio host gets fired at some point, there will be some
listeners excited when I get fired. I’m going to go home
and look at my wife and daughters and say, “Daddy doesn’t
have a job,” while others are applauding as if their lives
improve the day I’m faced with terrible misery.
I’m not above the fray, however. If the Diamondbacks sent
out a press release announcing they’ve decided to cut Eric
Byrnes again — even though he hasn’t been on the roster
in two years — I would have an uncontrollable ground
swell of positive emotion forcing my hands together for a
round of applause.
The job of a college Athletic Director is one of the
strangest in our country. You’re in charge of a multi-
million dollar business. You will be sued if you don’t
spend those millions on business ventures you know will
fail financially (women’s sports). If you win 18 national
championships in swimming/diving/soccer/softball/water
polo while losing on the football field and basketball
court, you’re not getting the job done.
College Athletic Directors understand there is cruel fate
in the position. Reaching the heights of Athletic
Director of a BCS school is a huge individual pay day.
You accept a job where you are judged on wins and losses.
If you win, you don’t tell people to quit congratulating
you. If you win, you don’t tell the Board of Regents to
stop sending you bonus money for the extra contract
clauses you’ve earned. If you lose, people cheer when you