Twistity Sports Exclusive: Head Ball Coach Resigns

Steve Spurrier Resigns But Doesn’t Retire Steve Spurrier’s fabulous coaching career came to a close with his decision to resign on Monday night. He put the University of South...

Steve Spurrier Resigns But Doesn’t Retire

Steve Spurrier’s fabulous coaching career came to a close with his decision to resign on Monday night. He put the University of South Carolina’s 2-4 football team in the hands of a trusted assistant and took his leave.

He gave many reasons – the program needs to be rebuilt, it’s better to start now, at the age of 70 he no longer wants to make promises to recruits he’ll be coaching in five years – but there’s more and it’s simple. He hates losing.

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Every coach says it. Spurrier really hates it. As in, cannot abide it.

In the mid-1990s, when the Dallas Cowboys were heading toward another Super Bowl, I asked the large and affable guard Nate Newton about Spurrier. He had played for him in the USFL, with the Tampa Bay Bandits. Would Spurrier be a good fit in the NFL?

Newton shook his head and said: “Nah. He cries too much.” Cries too much? Newton explained that Spurrier could not stand to lose as many games as even the best teams in the NFL will in the course of a season.

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In 2002, Spurrier became the Washington Redskins head coach. In 2003, with a 12-20 record, he departed. Thanks, Nate.

Spurrier was terrific at the college level, building at Duke University, rebuilding at South Carolina and winning a national championship in between at Florida, his alma mater and the place where he won the Heisman Trophy. Funny, sharp, creative, he defined an era and helped change the Southeastern Conference into a passing league. South Carolina, so long downtrodden, finished in the top 10 from 2011-13 with identical 11-2 records.

Spurrier always liked to refer to himself as The Head Ball Coach. And that’s what he was.
 
 
Post By: Larry Weisman, a longtime sportswriter for USA TODAY, blogs for Twistity.com. Follow him on Twitter @MrLarryWeisman .

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