04.Feb.2012 Ryan Leaf Calls Mike Riley “an Idiot”…

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Leaf isn't exactly a great source, but interesting comments nonetheless.

But he holds back nothing when assessing Mike Riley, who was Chargers head coach from 1999 to 2001. He laments what he described as Riley’s lack of discipline and wishes he had been allowed more time with Kevin Gilbride.

“I know the Chargers made mistakes, but I made a bunch of mistakes myself, and I’ve got to take responsibility for that. I mean, Mike Riley is an idiot, but I can’t do anything to change that. He wasn’t supposed to be a head coach in the NFL. Why was he there?”

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/feb/03/leaf-surprise-visitor-super-bowl/?page=1#article

Most interesting bit is the lack of discipline comment. I've written many times Riley pays no attention to detail. Now confirmed by an ex player.

On a similar note, this is what Riley has to say about the new coach:

“In this hire the priority is what they can do in coaching,” Riley said. “Then, how they can aid in recruiting, how they fit in with the staff and if they buy into the philosophy of what we are trying to do.”

Personally, I think there are enough good coaches on the staff. Recruiting should be the priority. But hey, what do I know, I'm just some idiot, right?

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  • mckalk says:
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    Ouch, that was some harsh “stuff”, not such a good “deal”. That might be the one thing that MR doesn’t find “neat”. Anyway, I do have to consider the source, Leaf has to be right up there in the idiocy hall of fame.

  • osu2008 says:
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    I take what Leaf says with a grain of salt. That guy was a punk and I’m glad he failed big time in the NFL. I do agree with Leaf though that Riley had no business in being a head coach in the NFL. Where is the game prediction for Men’s basketball? Utah has a free player that will show the game live. http://utahutes.cstv.com/allaccess/?media=293672

  • beavers4life says:
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    Not defending Riley or saying Ryan Leaf was too harsh, but it sounds to me that Riley didn’t help Leaf’s mental game at all. Isn’t that what we’ve known though? We know that Riley doesn’t help his players prepare mentally. That’s a big part of football and Riley is terrible at it!

    “I also think if Peyton started out 0-16 his first three years and threw 28 interceptions each year, he still would have had the career he did. He still has the perseverance and motivation, where if he failed he could get over it; where if I failed I dwelled on it too long and I found a way to deconstruct. I was not in the right mindset to be a quarterback at that time.”

    • GoBeavs90 says:
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      Guys like Ryan Leaf don’t succeed in the NFL no matter who their coaches are. He was a head case, no coaching is gonna fix that.

      I will agree about Riley though. He wasn’t a good fit in the NFL.

  • slamadam says:
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    ryan leaf has shown himself to be one of the biggest dipshits in sports history time and time again. this is just another example. vince lombardi couldn’t win with that asshole. funny how leaf thinks he’s and idiot but jim harbaugh stops just short of saying he’d take a bullet for him anytime he talks about him.

  • angry angry says:
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    There is a game thread up. Use that, any comment here will be deleted or moved.

  • Mud&Sticks Mud&Sticks says:
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    Sometimes the Beav fans remind me of my idea of what a bunch of Okies are like. Fight like crazy amongst themselves but if an outsider says anything about any of them they all jump on the outsider whether or not the outsider is correct.

  • osu2008 says:
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    Harbaugh, Junior Seau, and Doug Flutie all think the world of Riley, so I believe them more than Leaf, who not only bombed out of the NFL, but has had legal troubles (something to do with prescription painkillers), and is one of the biggest assholes in all of sports. Even Leaf’s own Charger teammates didn’t like him and there are plenty of reasons why.

    Riley could be a better coach if he quit playing the buddy system and stop hiring friends as coaches, updated his offensive and defensive schemes, and worked more on preparation and fundamentals. I’ve been to practices and sometimes they don’t even work on tackling drills. Look at Pat Casey and how he practices and you can see why OSU baseball has been really successful. Pat is regarded as one of the best teachers in the game and goes to speak at a lot of clinics. Why? He drills the fundamentals into his players constantly. Riley doesn’t do this and I think the players lose out on the opportunity to get better or regress as a result. I used to love Riley when he was here the first time, but he has not been the same since he left for the pros.

    • angry angry says:
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      Obviously Leaf isn’t an authoritative source. Still, he was a major talent and NFL player who called Riley an idiot.

      The guys you mention love Riley for their own reasons. Many times it’s because he’s a nice guy (or in Harbaugh’s case, gave him a chance to QB). When Harbaugh coached Stanford, I doubht he stayed up all night scheming against Riley. You know?

      You have to separate the opponents’ reverence for Riley due to him being a nice guy and playing by the rules (which is rare in this day) versus their respect for him as a scheming football mind. I’d wager quite a bit of money it’s more the former. Everyone around here respects him on that front.

      • osu2008 says:
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        Agree. Players liked Riley for being a class act, but not much else. I think Leaf is trying to sell a book and is looking for attention. Really surprised he hasn’t been given his own reality show by someone by now.

        I think Mike has a fair eye for talent, but he is stuck with antiquated schemes and is getting left behind by some of the other guys in the conference, like Chip Kelly. Last year just proved how slow Riley is to change. If it weren’t for Ryan Gunderson and his tech savvy mind, plus young guys like Brennan, recruiting would not have improved from the 2007/08 debacle. However, other things need a lot of work and recruiting still needs to improve big time. Other than the O-line, the TEs, and Chris Brown, I was not real thrilled with this class.

        As far as discipline, there does not seem to be a sense of urgency in the program, like every game is for the conference title. There’s no killer instinct. I think Riley promotes the “family” atmosphere, but he needs to also preach about how important it is to the program to win games. Kids want to play in BCS bowls, that’s what fans want to see, and Riley has never seemed to focus himself or his players on getting there.

        • Jack says:
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          Leaf wrote a book? Since when does three pages of octuple spacing and three inch margins on both sides constitute a book?

          What’s it called?

          Mike Price: misunderstood greatness?

        • angry angry says:
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          Bingo.

          I think Riley assumes the roll of the players’ dad. He’s more interesting in carving men out of them than he is winning games. That’s fine and all if you’re a priest but not as a D1 coach. Not that it’s not important at all, but it should be way down on the ladder.

          • mckalk says:
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            I think the player’s consider Riley more of the “nice dad” and not the “disciplinarian dad” who’s going to kick their asses in when they do stupid things.

  • whatinthebluehell says:
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    Let’s remember who the idiot was….Riley begged the Chargers to take Brady, the front office laughed at him and took Leaf instead. The real joke was Ryan Leaf in the NFL.

    • osu2008 says:
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      Not only that, but Riley passed on Michael Vick and got Tomlinson. Given Vick’s issues, it looked like a good move.

  • True Beavieler says:
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    The only thing worse than that is if Leaf would’ve said he liked him. I mean really…lol….who on earth would want THAT guy’s endorsement??

  • beavskis says:
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    I’m not a Riley apologist, but Ryan Leaf is an entitled ass clown. Of course he’s blaming Riley.

  • beavergopher beavergopher says:
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    Looks like Ducks are immune to elevation changes. Should have beaten CU. Next excuse.

    • mckalk says:
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      Gopher, I may be off base and what happens in the locker room might be entirely different, but I feel like CR coddles his players in the media. To me, it sends out a message of mental weakness.

  • boycat says:
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    I know what he says fits your preconceived little template about Riley, but I must say you’re really on tenuous ground when you rely on anything Leaf has to say about anything, especially when it comes to his NFL “career.”

    • oneoldbeav says:
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      boycat, not sure you comprehend the meaning of preconceived, let me help you.

      preconceived |?pr?k?n?s?vd|
      adjective
      (of an idea or opinion) formed BEFORE HAVING EVIDENCE for its truth or usefulness

      Is Riley an idiot? Not IMHO.
      Is there evidence from his record to question the way he operates? damn straight!
      Does any “little template” rely on Leaf? NO

    • angry angry says:
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      First sentence: Leaf isn’t exactly a great source

      Next?

  • angry angry says:
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    For the record, I think Leaf is an idiot, and I think Riley is undisciplined with no attention to detail (amongst other flaws, though I am not sure “idiot” is one of them, but maybe it is given Riley’s use of time outs, challenges, etc?). If Leaf didn’t mention Riley’s lack of discipline this wouldn’t be a story because he, Leaf, is an idiot. Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once and a while, though, and I think Leaf’s take on Riley’s discipline is spot on.

  • BeavMonkey says:
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    Riley is a class act and a stand-up guy. He may not be the best coach, but he is probably near the middle. And while I wouldn’t mind getting a newer and better one, I wouldn’t want to take a chance on an unknown quantity at HC and give up Riley.

    Riley runs an ethical football program. Often times, that can conflict with winning. He also has poor coaching talent around him, and is reluctant to let substandard coaches go.

    I would put Riley at or above 50th percentile in head coaches across the land. Maybe a bit below 50th percentile of coaches in decent conferences. However, With all the things we are below 25th percentile in, he is fairly decent at trying to make serviceable football happen under his strict standards.

    Feel free to call me a Riley ass-kisser. But I really don’t think I am.

  • mckalk says:
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    I don’t remember the story, did Riley bench Leaf at some point in favor of Harbaugh? Flutie was also in the mix too, right? If Riley gave Harbaugh another chance that probably goes a lot to their relationship now.

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