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Back of the line
Charlie's Inside Corner: Jan. 3, 2019

If you are a coach, and you are filing for unemployment benefits, GET IN THE BACK OF THE LINE!

It was a disastrous week in the coaching industry. For a lot of coaches that still had “He’s the guy that is going to lead this program to success, that is going to improve our work ethic and instill a new level of support from our fans” ringing in their ears, well, they’re job hunting this morning!

A line or two from my MOTHER GOOSE book says it best: “Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall; All the King’s horses and all the King’s men cannot put Humpty Dumpty together again.”

They fell off the wall in great numbers this past week. In the National Football League they are calling it “BLACK MONDAY”. Vance Joseph in Denver-OFF THE WALL. Marvin Lewis in Cincinnati-OFF THE WALL. Adam Gase in Miami-OFF THE WALL. Steve Wilks in Arizona-OFF THE WALL. Todd Bowles-New York Jets-OFF THE WALL. Add to that the holes created in Green Bay, Cleveland and other locations and you quickly see HUMPTY DUMPTY really had quite a fall!

We don’t have the time or the space here to delve into the college world but the trend there is quite the same. Not only in football but in basketball, as well, as UCLA fired Steve Alford just a few games into the season. Now THAT is making a statement!

What a game of musical chairs! One thing we know: When the music stops and all of these teams have their new coach, each one of them will be bandied as the “perfect fit” to restore (you fill in the blank here of our favorite team) to athletic achievement and glory. At least they will be the “perfect fit” until that first loss comes stumbling along!

The one constant we hear from the general managers and athletic directors about their now-fired coaches is “how great a person they are and how they’ve sacrificed and done a lot for their teams but we need to go in a new direction.” I can translate that for you: “These Bums can’t coach a lick!”

So, Humpty Dumpty, get in the back of the unemployment line until some other team thinks you are just what they need. It usually happens!


— Dribble! Dribble! It’s back to basketball this week. Put Santa away and put the Bowl games away. It’s time to get serious about this round-ball thing!

— Kansas is once again the Big 12 favorite. One of the big reasons is Bill Self’s record in close games. The dude is incredible! Over the past 3 years his team is 33-3 in Big 12 games decided by 10 points or less. Yes, you’ve got to have good players but that also takes a great coaching touch!

— I’ve watched a lot of football over the past two weeks and I’m still convinced that the officiating has become too much a part of the game, both pro and college. Is it just the officials wanting to be “part of the action” or are they simply enforcing the rules the way they’ve been told? Probably a little of both! Either way, I don’t like it!

— I’ve got a couple of new additions for my “ALL-NAME TEAM. The 7’6” center for UCF, Tacko Fall. Yep, 7’6” is a long way to fall! Cincinnati offers us Cane Broome, a 6’ guard. What else do they make brooms out of besides Cane? Finally, Nate Pierre-Lewis, a 6’4” guard from Temple. What’s so unusual about the name Lewis you ask? Nothing. I just think anybody with a hyphenated name belongs somewhere on my list. His name’s just kind of cool. Probably going to be a movie star!

— As you move into this new year, remember the words of Will Rogers:  “Last year we said ‘Things can’t go on like this’, and they didn’t. They got worse!”

Buddy Tabler is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune and his views don’t necessarily reflect those of the paper. He can be reached at