The College Football Coaches Federation (CFCF) ** announced Wednesday a series of emergency steps designed to bring greater stability to the coaching profession.
“The last few days have been chaotic,” said CFCF president Harvey “Lefty” Hightower. *** “We are concerned about the increased scrutiny and stress level placed upon our member coaches. Therefore, going forward, all member schools and coaches will be required to follow these emergency guidelines.”
Hightower said Power Five football coaches always find discussions of salary to be awkward for them, so, in the future, member schools will be required to provide a base 10-year, $100-million contract when any current contract expires.
“This way coaches and schools can avoid a virulent strain of Excessive Wealth Disorder,” Hightower said. “They can simply say they are following the rules.”
The guidelines also affect how coaching changes will be announced. “There is so much misinformation that gets out there,” said Hightower. Under the new guidelines, all coaching change announcements will be divided equally among Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports, Brett McMurphy of ESPN and Dennis Dodd of CBS Sports.
(Thamel, McMurphy and Dodd have all agreed that the names of Cincinnati coach Luke Fickell, Iowa State coach Matt Campbell and Oregon coach Mario Cristobal shall be included in any speculative stories about coaching vacancies.)
The CFCF also wants to address the concerns of student athletes who feel as though their coach is abandoning them. The new guidelines require that each coach, upon announcing their departure, must spend at least two minutes addressing his players.
The guidelines say the content is up to the coach, but it is suggested that the coach express how much they love the players and the school, that the decision has nothing to do with the money and that it was the hardest decision they have ever made.
“As we have said many times, the student athlete is our No. 1 priority,” Hightower said.
In the future, a coach will not be required to give fact-based answers when questioned by the press about if he is interested in another job. The guidelines state that, if such circumstance arises, a coach may say “no,” and the definition of “no” shall mean “no” unless it means “yes.”
(A subsection of that guideline also permits a coach to personally berate any reporter who poses the question.)
Hightower said special attention was given to the many benefits that a college football coach may receive as an enticement to change jobs. “This has gotten out of control,” said Hightower, citing the report that new USC coach Lincoln Riley will have access to a private jet for him and his family, 24/7.
“We really felt we needed to make a statement here,” Hightower said. “A private plane flight must be scheduled at least two hours in advance, and no more than six family members may fly at any one time.”
Finally, the guidelines address the thorny issue of buyouts. “Going forward, schools will be required to pay the buyout at least two years before the coach is fired,” he said. “That way both the schools and the coaches can avoid any additional embarrassment when a coach is dismissed.”
There are critics of the new guidelines, with some suggesting they are excessively generous and too deferential to coaches. Hightower pushed back on the criticism, adding that several recommendations were rejected for those very reasons.
“For example, on a narrow vote, we defeated a proposal that required all staff at football facilities to avoid direct eye contact with the head coach, and we tabled a motion that would have redirected low-income student scholarship money toward a fund to pay for a statue of the head coach,” he said.
Hightower added that coaching college football is an honored profession, one where the health and welfare of the student athlete is paramount, and the integrity of the institution must be protected.
“We believe these guidelines demonstrate exactly where are priorities lie.” *****
* (Editor’s note: None of this is true.)
** (Editor’s note: There is no such organization.)
*** (Editor’s note: Not a real person.)
**** (Editor’s note: Not really.)
***** (Editor’s note: Maybe this isn’t too far fetched after all.)