The 5 Best Things Mike Leach said at SEC Media Days, presented by SHIELD from Sword Performance

Nick Roush2 months

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It took a little longer than we'd all like, but Mike Leach finally got his first crack at the SEC Media Days podium. The Pirate did not disappoint. Here are the five most entertaining moments from his Hoover debut, starting with his unconventional opening statement.

1. "Let's just go ahead and get started."

https://twitter.com/SECNetwork/status/1417917365078069258?s=20 Leach toes a fine line between charismatic and curmudgeon. There were times he seemed crusty, and others that produced lots of laughs.

2. Tennessee Coup

Leach's first appearance in Hoover marked the first time he's met with the SEC media since he almost took the head coaching position in Knoxville. When asked how close he was to taking the Tennessee job, Leach pulled no punches. "I talked to Tennessee, but that thing never -- well, nothing ever got nailed down. Then pretty soon, they had a coup d'etat there. You guys can sort that among yourselves, but that's pretty well-documented," he said. "So, yeah, I didn't end up in the middle of the coup, so lucky for me." Instead of Leach, the Vols got Jeremy Pruitt. You love to see it.

3. A 12-Team Playoff is Not Enough

"It's never enough," he said. "I think 12 teams is a huge step in the right direction. I personally would like to see 64, and you could format it out pretty easily, but I think it's a huge step the right direction, and I look forward to it." Who's ready for Joey Brackets to take his talents to college football?

4. No time for COVID talk

Leach was interested in talking about football and other general nonsense. COVID-19 and its vaccines? He's out. When asked how he's addressed vaccines with his team, he said: "We let the doctors handle all that, so I don't have anything to do with that. We let the guys that know what they're doing handle it." A reporter directly asked Leach a follow up a few questions later. "Are you vaccinated? Why or why not?" Leach replied, "If I was or I wasn't, I wouldn't share it with you. But again, we leave that to the doctors and anybody's doctor or care provider."

5. What's better, teaching or coaching?

During his final season in Pullman, Leach taught a class called "Insurgent Warfare and Football Strategies." Leach enjoyed his time in the classroom and has discussed potentially returning to academia in Starkville. If he had to choose between teaching or coaching, the two aren't so different from one another. "Coaching and teaching, it's really quite similar," Leach said. "One's indoors. One's outdoors, and you have more space obviously in coaching. If you get ticked off in coaching, you can pace off a variety of directions. Oh, you don't get in trouble for swearing as much in coaching. So coaching does definitely have its advantages. But the teaching, that was exciting. Yeah, I would look forward to doing it again."

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2021-09-24