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Rutgers coach: Sanity 1, Psychos 0

So apparently even university honchos come to their senses eventually.

And so Rutgers basketball coach Mike Rice is gone, after a video of him verbally and physically abusing players in practice went viral on the interwebs. That Rutgers hadn't fired him long before now is the most astounding thing about that.

Well, except for this: That there are still people in the world who think what Rice does on this video is "coaching."

If you haven't seen it, all you need to know is it's 100 times worse than the now-fabled video of Bob Knight trying his hand on for size around Neil Reed's neck. Rice screamed gay slurs and other epithets at his players, shoved and yanked them around by their jerseys, kicked them, threw basketballs at their heads.

This isn't coaching. This is a grown man behaving like a 2-year-old who didn't get dessert. And yet there are still people out there who think this sort of technique works.

It doesn't. Any coach who's actually any good at what he does will tell you that in a heartbeat. What it represents is the failure of coaching, because if you have to resort to yanking your players around and throwing balls at their heads to get your point across, you are one lousy teacher of the game. And at bottom, that's what coaches are: teachers.

So Rice is gone, and good riddance to bad rubbish. Only mystery that lingers for me in all this, having watched the video, is how the guy survived so long without one of his player knocking him into the middle of next week. Or several of his players.

Ben Smith's blog.

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