I have a friend who is Kyle Flood's neighbor. Yes, Kyle Flood is a neighbor to someone. He is a father, a husband, a son, a brother....a neighbor.
Kyle Flood is a person. A human being. Someone who has feelings, someone who is....human.
I write this because a lot of us - including me - are looking for him to lose his job. And that's something no one should do lightly.
Because he is, like all of us, human, with human weaknesses and frailties.
And I write this not as a defense or apology of Kyle Flood. Rather. I write it as a reminder of who we are and what we're doing.
Like most of us here - both contributor and reader - I have given up on Flood. It took a while, it took a lot. But I am not supporting his continued employment at Rutgers. He needs to go, a clean start needs to be made with the football program. But I used the term employment. Granted, a unique and very-well compensated employment, but we are, nonetheless, calling for a guy to lose his job.
I think in today's world, society has become very quick on the trigger finger to fire people. A person makes a mistake and the cry goes up "He should lose his job over that", regardless of the severity of the action. And for a good while, there were some who wanted Flood out while a good number of us clung to hope that it would be alright in the end. I don't think the knee-jerk reaction of calling for dismissal applies here.
But if Flood is fired, he won't be on the streets, destitute. His family will not be without food or shelter. But his kids will still hear from their friends that their dad got canned, because their friends will hear it from their parents. He will be, to a degree, a persona non grata in a lot of circles. He and his family will have some issues with friends and family. Let's not forget that.
I am producing the coaching bracketology (which restarts with the Round of 16 tomorrow morning), and it's an interesting and humorous way to discuss the coaching situation at Rutgers. It's entertaining and, for me, it was an exercise in creative writing. And that's all well and good on the blogosphere. But in the real world, this probably isn't very entertaining or fun for Flood's wife and kids. And for that, I do have some guilt. For that, I do have some sorrow.
Rutgers wrestling coach Scott Goodale follows me on Twitter. I'm a wrestling guy. And I guess he saw the tweet that accompanied one of the posts on Rutgers next football coach. And he tweeted:
@scarknight we have a coach
— Coach Scott Goodale (@CoachGoodale) November 6, 2015
And I was happy he did. I would expect nothing less from a fellow coach. I sincerely want my wrestling coach to support the football coach, who would support the softball coach, who would.... Well, you get the idea. I want coaches to be team players, to back each other up. And Kyle Flood has done that with his colleagues. He's a team player and, I'm guessing, a good colleague.
And we can add that to a father, a husband, a son, a brother....a neighbor. Kyle Flood is a colleague, perhaps of the highest order. And that is why it is so difficult, so painful to take the next step.
He is all the things I've stated and described in this essay. But the one thing he cannot be, at least anymore, is our football coach. Not any any longer.