Blue tongue lashing

Notre Dame football coach Brian Kelly took some heat this week from Peter Finney, writing in New Orleans' archdiocesan paper the Clarion Herald, where he serves as Executive Editor. During a couple of frustrating losses this season, you didn't need to be a lip-reader to figure out what Kelly was, well, simply screaming at players whose various mishaps provoked a more-or-less unrestrained response from their head coach.

Finney called the unfortunate Kelly, who, let's face it, holds one of the more high pressure spots it collegiate athletics, "poster child for Catholic coaches gone wild" and yellow flagged Notre Dame on the apparent hypocrisy of hiring Kelly, who already had a reputation for working blue (and in vein-popping purple) from the sidelines, while offering lip-service and college credit to notions of compassionate Christian coaching.

Advertisement

"OK, so what’s the big deal?," Finney asks. "Aren’t these 18- to 22-year-old athletes big enough and tough enough to accept abusive language from a coach—foul-mouthed tirades they’ve probably heard since high school—and simply move on?"

"That’s not the fundamental question and totally misses the point, says Edmund Rice Christian Brother John Casey, a former secondary schools executive with the National Catholic Educational Association who now lives in New Orleans after having spent many years as principal of Rice High School in Central Harlem.

“'We are an incarnational faith,' Brother John said. 'How we act counts.'”

You can read the rest of Finney's tips for G-rated coaching here.

 

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
John Barbieri
7 years 6 months ago
See Notre Dame for what it is: another "Football Tech."
There is no reason to be disappointed by what its employees do.
Eugene Pagano
7 years 6 months ago
Is the coach's vocabulary any cruder than what young people use freely today, whether or not they are receiving scholarships at a highly regarded university?

And how is an Irish Christian Brother, with his order's history of abuse, able to comment on how to treat young people respectfully?
7 years 6 months ago
Well, let's see, Mr. Pagano. If young people today all jump off a bridge, should their coach jump off a bridge, too? And how is an American, with his country's history of bombing Afghan weddings, able to comment on this issue at all?

Toot, Tu quoque, goodbye.

Advertisement

The latest from america

Join Kirsten Powers, CNN analyst and USA Today columnist, and Rev. James Martin, S.J., Editor at Large of America Media and New York Times best-selling author, for a live show celebrating the 100th episode of Jesuitical.
America Media EventsApril 24, 2019
"Hillary and Clinton"
In Hnath’s play, Hillary has put all her bets on competence, while Bill unsurprisingly presses her to show more humanity.
Rob Weinert-KendtApril 19, 2019
The day before this issue went to press, we watched on our newsroom monitors the devastating fire at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame in Paris.
Matt Malone, S.J.April 19, 2019
Frida Kahlo (Mexican, 1907–1954). Self-Portrait as a Tehuana, 1943. Oil on hardboard, 30 x 24 in. (76 x 61 cm). The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Collection of 20th Century Mexican Art and the Vergel Foundation. © 2019 Banco de México Diego Rivera Frida Kahlo Museums Trust, Mexico, D.F. / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Kahlo’s paintings, the vast majority of which are self-portraits, are rife with self-revelation,