It’s no secret that Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach is not happy with his employers, as we wrote about it in much more detail yesterday. He wants more money, he wants more credit and, most importantly, he wants more respect. So how did Leach, who resurrected a moribund Tech football program, get so mad at the people who finally gave him a chance? Because of Bob Knight, who’s now too busy sitting in an ESPN chair to care about Texas Tech.
According to this piece in SPORTINGNEWS.COM, the friction is all connected to Tech Athletic Director Gerald Myers, who currently pays Leach $2 million per season to coach the football team. When Leach first approached Myers about a richer extension two years ago, he was, by all accounts, not taken seriously. Despite leading Tech to nine straight bowls, Leach was always seen as a second class citizen to Bob Knight’s celebrity. And THE SPORTING NEWS’s Matt Hayes has a great anecdote to prove it.
Here’s what Hayes wrote about the moment Knight arrived in Lubbock:
A close friend of Leach told me a story last fall that sums up the situation. When Bob Knight arrived at Tech in 2001 to coach basketball, Myers gave Knight Leach’s university parking spot.
Even though Leach was given another spot in the same lot, the move didn’t sit well. For the rest of the semester, Leach parked in a commuter lot and walked to work.
It’s more than money, everyone.
Now that is sticking to your principles. It also underlines why Leach is determined not to give Tech any kind of a hometown discount. Despite building a winning program in arguably the toughest division in college football — the Big 12 South — Myers feels like Leach doesn’t have any other options. Well, after the season the Red Raiders put together last year, he’s suddenly got some interest.
And the reason he’ll be pushing it is because he’s still pissed off about being one-upped by Bob Knight. Sometimes a man has to stand his ground for respect, and Knight kept Leach from getting it when they were both in Lubbock. Now Leach could leave and keep the Red Raiders from holding on to the respect its finally earned. Karma sucks sometimes, doesn’t it?