I used to be the beat writer for Michigan football when I worked at the Free Press many moons ago. Gary Moeller was one of Bo Schembechler’s most trusted assistants and I had an arrangement a few Wednesday’s a season to meet with Moeller in the old football offices.
One time I got to my meeting early and the football secretary told me to wait in the office which was near the main coach’s room. As I sat down a rumble inside the office broke out and I could hear the coaches cursing one another non stop. There was profanity and screaming and somebody pounded a fist. It was like the rumble in the jungle. A few minutes later a smiling Moeller emerged from the meeting and told me to come to his office.
“What was that all about,” I asked him.
“Oh that is nothing. We are just airing things out. We do that all the time.” Moeller said.
Fighting and arguing is a part of sports. There are battles that go on all the time that we don’t know about. And with that said I am wondering how necessary the one game benching of Rodney Stuckey was by Pistons coach Lawrence Frank. I am not certain what happened but from piecing things together Stuckey did not like his role on the team, wanted to make some changes and did it in not so nice terms.
Frank wanted to part of it and he parted ways with Stuckey for one game.
I also covered the Bad Boy Pistons. They not only were mean opponents but they were mean toward each other. I remember fights between Rick Mahorn and James Edwards. There was Isiah Thomas versus Bill Laimbeer and there were several other rumbles. Practice would be running smoothly and the next thing you knew dudes were swinging on one another.
There were also disagreements with Pistons coach Chuck Daly. But I do not remember any suspensions during the Bad Boys era. They mf’d each other and moved on. It was also a different time in Piston history. These teams were good and tolerated one another because they were of championship caliber. This team is not there and maybe that is why we are seeing a different way to handle disagreements.