Home Funny Quotes Mississippi State coach Mike Leach’s most unforgettable, bizarre and funniest quotes – USA TODAY

Mississippi State coach Mike Leach’s most unforgettable, bizarre and funniest quotes – USA TODAY

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Nick Suss


Mississippi Clarion Ledger

Published 9:19 AM EST Jan 10, 2020

New Mississippi State football coach Mike Leach is a man of many, many opinions.

A renowned offensive mind who has led his teams to 16 bowl games in 18 seasons as a head coach, Leach is respected for his coaching style and status. But fans might know Leach just as much for his eloquent, reasoned rants about whatever is on his mind. Whether the topic is disco, home invasions, raccoons, Halloween candies, local goths or whatever else he can think of, Leach has an opinion on the topic.

And Leach’s opinions often lead to memorable, bizarre and downright hilarious soundbites. 

Here are eight of Leach’s most famous quotes from his nearly two decades of being a head coach.

“How do you kill a Sun Devil?”

One of Leach’s lengthier and most interesting quotes is a two-minute-long breakdown of which Pac-12 mascot would win in a Battle Royale. Not actors in costumes, mind you. Like, who would win in an actual battle featuring a buffalo, a cougar, a Trojan, a tree and multiple bears?

Leach reasons that the Oregon Duck and the Oregon State Beaver would retreat, the Stanford Tree would get chopped down and the Washington Husky wouldn’t stand much of a chance. The USC Trojan and the Utah Ute would depend on whether or not they get horses and weapons. And does an Arizona State Sun Devil get magical powers? He said he’d have to consult “Harry Potter activists” to find an answer to that question.

Ultimately, if he’s picking between “the beasts,” Leach said it comes down to the Colorado Buffalo, the UCLA Bruin, the Cal Golden Bear and the “clear-minded and crafty” Washington State Cougar.

No word on which mascots would win in an SEC Battle Royale, but with three tigers, an elephant and a gator in the mix, it would make for an interesting thought experiment.

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“I don’t look like Elaine on Seinfeld…”

Mike Leach doesn’t like to dance.

Back in 2017, Leach said if he’s forced to dance he’ll go out onto the dance floor and “walk in place.” He blamed his disdain for rhythmic movement on his Scandinavian ancestry. He said he used to get kicked out of P.E. as a kid whenever it was square dancing day. And he ended his rant with this doozy of an explainer on his opinions about dancing:

“I don’t have any religious reservation about it and I respect people who can dance great,” he said. “I don’t look like Elaine on Seinfeld but all I’m doing is trying to tread water in place and make it go away.”

Leach added one more caveat. He wasn’t a good middle school dancer, but he thrived in other areas.

“I was good at dodgeball,” he said. “I bordered on great at dodgeball.”

“Everything’s about spiderwebs and skulls”

Apparently Leach used to walk past a cemetery on his way to the Washington State football stadium. And by his estimation, six “goths” hung out outside the graveyard. Not children. Adult goths, ranging in age between 20 and 30.

Leach said he tried to engage with the goths, going as far as to say “Great cemetery up here.” The goths responded with “frowny goth looks.”

“Goths aren’t in good moods anyway,” Leach added. “Everything’s about spiderwebs and skulls and black hair and black pants. Really white faces though.”

“It was nice knowing ya”

On Dec. 27, 2017, Leach published a post in The Players’ Tribune titled “5 Thoughts That Have Nothing To Do With Football.” He talked about Hawaii. He talked about why he prefers thin-crust pizza. He talked about why Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby belongs in the pantheon of great sports movies.

But most importantly, he told the story of his childhood pet: a raccoon named Bilbo Baggins who he spent time with during his childhood in Wyoming. Yes, those words are all meant to be next to each other.

Apparently Bilbo loved pots and pans. Raccoons are attracted to shiny objects, after all. Bilbo used to open the cabinets with his dextrous raccoon hands and clang the pots and pans together. (Bilbo would probably enjoy hearing cowbells ringing.)

When Bilbo got older, he got feisty. So a young Leach had to take Bilbo out into the woods and leave him there to be free. In one final glance, Bilbo was free.

“So this is how I remember saying goodbye to Bilbo,” Leach wrote. “He wandered 10 yards away or so from the truck, and then he turned and looked at us and kind of had this expression like, ‘It was nice knowing ya.’ It was this moment where like, both I knew and he knew that we’d had some good times, but this was it. It was onward and upward for both of us.”

“Their fat little girlfriends”

Leach didn’t err on the side of political correctness for this one.

After a loss during his Texas Tech days, Leach went on a rant about his players listening to the opinions of their “fat little girlfriends” instead of their coaches. In a span of 57 seconds, Leach criticized his players for a lack of work ethic and referred to their “fat little girlfriends” four times. 

Leach has since seized the phrase as his own. In 2010, Leach and his wife published the “Fat Little Girlfriends Cookbook,” what is described as a “Pirate’s Guide to Cuisine.”

“The worst era of music”

Leach’s childhood is a treasure trove of stories. And it shouldn’t be a surprise that someone who hates dancing as much as Leach does wouldn’t be a fan of disco.

Leach calls disco “the worst era of music” and says that anyone who wants to revive disco as a genre is “out of their mind.” He went on a bad date one time and he knew it was a bad date because they went to a school dance and the girl knew all the lyrics to every disco song. That just wouldn’t cut it in Leach’s mind.

Of course, Leach doesn’t sound like he’s a big fan of what followed either. He called punk rock an “overcorrection” to disco because “everyone was so angry.”

(Music snob fact check: Leach complains about listening to disco songs on the soundtrack album “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, a collection of covers of famous Beatles songs released in 1978, a full year after the Sex Pistols’ seminal punk rock record “Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols” came out. Leach’s timeline isn’t perfect here.)

“I do have a Viking axe by the bed”

In 2015, an Oregon-based radio host asked Leach how to curb gun violence in America. Leach, a gun owner himself, gave his opinion about thinking gun owners should have to prove their competency before they’re deemed responsible enough to operate a gun.

Then the interview went off the rails and somehow became about battle axes and grappling hooks. “I keep my guns on one part of the house totally locked up, and I keep the ammunition in another part of the house,” Leach said. “Because if you think about it carefully, statistically, you’re more likely to shoot yourself, a loved one or a relative. There’s this (absurd) notion of ‘If you come in my house I’ll shoot ya.’ I do have a Viking axe by the bed if I need to whack someone. … My wife bought me a Viking axe – the axe side curls down so you can grab the adversary around the neck and you can use it to climb walls, as a grappling hook.’

Not a fan of candy corn

Mike Leach doesn’t like seasonal treats.

Fruitcake? Nope. Mint juleps? Nah. Candy corn. Especially not. Leach laced into a quick rant about the Halloween delicacy in 2017 when asked his thoughts on the matter. His answer? If candy corn tastes so good, why do we save it for once a year? 

Then Leach answered his question with another question. If it tastes so bad, why serve it at all?

It shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that the coach who decided to throw the football 50 times a game 20 years ago isn’t a big fan of tradition. 

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