A word of advice: Idaho football coach Paul Petrino—who has gotten heated before—will flip out if you lightly criticize his team. Do not cross him.
Michael-Shawn Dugar of the Moscow-Pullman Daily News had been critical of the Vandals’ passing offense in an article this week, calling it “a work in progress.” Petrino apparently read Dugar’s work, and was not a fan:
At the end of Wednesday’s practice, Petrino turned to the sideline and asked me and a reporter from the Lewiston Tribune, “Did you guys see enough deep balls today?” He was referring to my story in Wednesday’s paper discussing the team’s work-in-progress vertical passing attack.
I thought he was being sarcastic, so I responded accordingly.
“A couple,” I replied.
“Yeah, there were a bunch,” the other reporter answered.
Petrino wasn’t just sarcastic; he was very much upset. He went on to immediately ban the media from today’s practice, yelling, “If all you’re going to write is negative (expletive) then none of you need to be here!”
I dismissed it as a lack of awareness, perhaps not realizing that while we were in fact on the football field, neither I nor the Tribune writer were his players, and we don’t respond to being spoken to that way.
But moments later, Petrino walked up to me and the Tribune reporter just outside the practice field and began to scream in my face, loudly informing us how many deep balls the team completed Wednesday. He then went on to chide us for our inaccurate criticisms of quarterback Matt Linehan and our lack of football knowledge, walking away saying, “You don’t even know what the (expletive) you’re talking about! Do your (expletive) job!”
According to Dugar, Petrino had to be restrained by one of his assistants. Well, at least he’s still emotionally invested in a program that went 1-10 last season.
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