Yet when perhaps the two highest-profile members of that team - the two who were in the best position to battle for the starting quarterback job - have issues that everyone knows about (not the specifics, but the fact that there are issues), the same program that wants your support and belief in them clams up and says, in essence, take a hike.
It's need-to-know, and you don't need to know.
You know what? You're right. No one NEEDS to know. And personally, I don't care, either.
But no one NEEDS to buy tickets or support the program, either. And don't the ones that do deserve just a modicum of transparency?
Sure, Joe Paterno operated his program at Penn State with that same sort of disdain for public relations for half a century (and no, we're not talking about Jerry Sandusky and all that, although didn't the veil of secrecy there contribute to that, as well?). Paterno scoffed at anyone's need to know anything other than what he decided to trickle down to the masses, but he also operated a program that won, sold 100,000 tickets every week and operated pre-Facebook and Twitter.
We're not talking about delving into the personal life or issues of Ford Childress or anyone else here. That's not the point. We don't need to know that. You didn't vote for him. He's not accountable to you and most of what he does is none of your business.
And truth be told, some things need to stay in house, and there are a whole bunch of things about football and basketball programs across the country that are way overblown. I'm the first in line among those who abhor the microscope placed on every aspect of a team by its fans and some in the media. So often things are blown way out of proportion, be it an injury or a fight or a suspension or an arrest or the myriad other things that happen when 120 players and coaches exist together. Stuff happens. Not all of it is important. Shoot, most of the stuff people make a big deal out of is overreaction.
But whether or not a guy who might have been the starting quarterback is on the team? That's not personal information. It's just a yes or a no answer. Have enough respect for the people who, for some reason, live and die by your successes and failures to give them a simple answer.
I've learned over the years that the best way to deal with the truly significant things - and I'm guessing that questions about whether either of your top two quarterbacks are still your top two quarterbacks qualifies as such - is to get out in front of it. It's not like it's possible to deny that there were and are issues with Childress and Trickett. Refusing to get out in front of it just fosters rumors and half-truths that can do no one any good. It also nurtures the belief that there's something to hide and/or that the program is in disarray.
In the case of Childress, I can't imagine any reason to keep him on the roster other than a belief that his departure might not have been sealed or permanent. If that was the case, fine. But if it wasn't, stop being secretive and move on. Publicly. Kind of like Texas Tech did Wednesday when it issued a statement on Brewer's behalf announcing his intentions, Holgorsen should have done the same regarding Childress's status and Trickett's surgery.
And then he could move on to recruiting Brewer and not telling anyone how he plans to bypass the Big 12's within-conference transfer rules.
Reach Dave Hickman at 304-348-1734 or dphickm...@aol.com or follow him at twitter.com/dphickman1.