Today’s Fowler Media Count

It’s like the energizer bunny.

After receiving widespread criticism for creating significant negative national attention at the end of last week, the Lee Fowler quote machine just keeps on rolling.

After the N&O ran the BIG NEWS that Lee Fowler supports Julius Hodge on Wednesday (THIS is news?) …we find out today that the Wolfpack continues to schedule ECU as our default football game of choice (I guess if the ACC office can’t schedule any games for us…our lazy asses in the Athletics Department would much rather just call up Greenville instead of working a little bit to find an interesting game to add to the schedule).

But of course…it doesn’t end there. Do me a quick favor and check out this exercise….

Look to the upper right hand side of News & Observer’s online sports page and you will see a hotlink to all of the recent news logged by the N&O on each of the local schools. Of the last 10 articles logged for each school…

* NC State’s Lee Fowler has been mentioned in SIX and quoted in FIVE of the last 10 NC State stories.
(Quotes on topics related to Chuck Amato, NC State fans, football scheduling, and Jamie Valvano…and doesn’t even include Fowler’s comments this week related to the scoreboard at Carter-Finley Stadium. Thank goodness Gavin Grant’s citizenship has not been discussed this week).

* UNC’s Dick Baddour has been mentioned in zero and quoted in zero of the last 10 UNC stories.

* Wake Forest’s Ron Wellman has been mentioned in one and quoted in one of the last 10 Wake stories (despite the fact that recent topics include Hurricane Wilma’s producing a change in Wake’s football schedule).

* Duke’s Joe Alleva has been mentioned in one and quoted in one of the last 10 Duke stores
(despite the fact that the most popular Basketball Coach in the country, Alleva’s Coach K, is currently linked to coaching the USA Olympic team).

Maybe later in the week we will analyze the different appearances by each AD in the area — we know of Fowler’s 2 radio appearances scheduled for today (680 AM this morning & 850AM this afternoon). Anyone know of any other appearances by the “Coach” or the other AD’s this week?

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9 Responses to Today’s Fowler Media Count

  1. Dennis 10/20/2005 at 11:56 AM #

    You wufpups keep whining and whining about the N&O. Look back a couple of years when Dick Baddour was firing and hiring…………..see how many articles focused on his “lack of vision”…………etc………….

    Author’s Note: Your internet access seems to be working just fine. Why can’t you do your own research?

    How do you not understand the difference in what you are talking about? A sportswriter’s article discussing/analyzing Dick Baddour’s performance is in no way similar to Lee Fowler incessantly choosing to comment and put himself into the media spotlight. Fowler wanting to be the focus of every topic known to man is completely different from a media organization discussing his job performance. We could only be so lucky.

  2. Wolfbuff2 10/20/2005 at 11:58 AM #

    I think Fowler is as big a doofus as anyone, but let’s face it with the meltdown of the football program, Gavin facing deportation, Valvano’s daughter contracting cancer, and Julius Hodge being accused of a felony the spotlight has clearly been on us in mostly a big negative way. I see no need for him to comment on Julius or Valvano’s daughter, but maybe he just makes himself more available than the other ADs.

    Besides, who wants to talk to Baddour? Despite their meltdown at Louisville, that’s old news and their football program is not in as bad a shape as ours. And the N&O is too busy covering all of our ills than to seek a meaningless quote from Dickie.

    Wellman was recently at the Raleigh Sports club wasn’t he? He made some news there, though he didn’t really say anything. In the aftermath of the Chris Paul “incident” he had no trouble opening his yap. It has been well-documented that Fowler was uncharacteristically quiet during this episode.

    As for Alleva, who cares what he has to say about football, and as for basketball, is there any question who really runs the program over there in Durham? I mean, come on, K’s a legend in his own mind who’s perfectly willing to step into the spotlight for himself.

  3. JB34 10/20/2005 at 12:44 PM #

    What does Lee Fowler have to do with Jamie Valvano? Seriously. Who the f* cares what he thinks about a young lady’s health issues?

    It’s funny how Fowler sends David Horning to talk about football scheduling to Pack Pride & the N&O everytime an opponent cancels on us…but every week or so when we ink new deals with ECU it is all about Fowler getting quoted.

    Wake Forest just had a football game re-scheduled and you didn’t hear a thing from Ron Wellman…could you imagine a similar situation with State.

    “It has been well-documented that Fowler was uncharacteristically quiet during this episode.”

    If you call Fowler giving 2 interviews to Fox Sports during the game that you are talking about (question: how many times have you ever seen Wellman/Baddour/Alleva interviewed during games?) as “quiet” then I guess so. OF COURSE he was going to be quiet during the Paul incident…had he said anything he would run the risk of offending someone from Wake or the ACC. He would never run the risk of offending anyone outside of the fanbase that he already “owns”. It might get in his way of finding another job.

  4. Fletch 10/20/2005 at 2:20 PM #

    OK, I know we disagree on ECU, but I for one love the games. I have ECU friends and we always have a great time. I think easily 50% of the fanbase supports this game. I understand all of the reasns for not playing it, but there are good reasons for playing it also.

  5. JB34 10/20/2005 at 2:34 PM #

    As a “fan”, I actually love the games.

    But, as a business/program advancement proposition, I think that they are horrible for NC State. And, that is what should drive the decisions of our Athletics Department.

    To be fair, I can understand a very occassional game between the schools. Perhaps 2 in Raleigh, 1 in Greenville every decade.

  6. Dennis 10/21/2005 at 10:12 AM #

    I’ve done my research. Maybe you guys should get another Tarheel to be your AD……….maybe he’d keep his mouth shut. Go Deacs!

  7. JB34 10/21/2005 at 2:28 PM #

    Wow…a shit talking Deacon fan?

    You just don’t run across them every day.

    Dennis, weird thing is that your original post was so far off the mark that you didn’t realize that the original entry wasn’t remotely related to “whining about the N&O”.

    But, your point about hiring another Tarheel to be our AD is so accurate that all we can do is agree with you about the stupidity that has been many of the long-term management decisions at NC State.

  8. SaccoV 10/21/2005 at 5:45 PM #

    The scheduling portion of his reign has been the most neglected aspect of Fowler’s directorship. The idea that we have a “program on the rise” (for 6 damn years) is always belied by the fact of scheduling teams like ECU. There would be no problem if we played ECU at a home-and-home for two years and then left them off for two to five years. The rivalry would be MORE intense and the interest would peak. Playing those numbskulls every year doesn’t improve anything about the look of program to recruits (because hopefully WE DON’T RECRUIT AGAINST ECU!!) and it could only damage our standing nationally if we were to lose that game. This is really a bad situation and it’s perfectly clear that the reason Fowler continues to sign deals with ECU and Southern Mississippi is because he doesn’t want a good loss to a good team. He wants these local cakewalk-games so Chuck can keep his record respectable despite conference ineptitude. I would hope even a 12-year-old in this area could schedule a few better teams than we have in the past three years.

  9. Jeff 10/26/2005 at 11:49 PM #

    Holland pushing academics
    News & Observer File Photo
    Published: Oct 26, 2005

    By NED BARNETT, Staff Writer

    GREENVILLE — When it comes to athletics directors firing coaches, East Carolina’s Terry Holland has hit for the cycle. Only one year into his tenure, Holland has fired the football coach, the basketball coach and the baseball coach.

    The man behind this rapid turnover isn’t what all the pink slips suggest: an impatient AD determined to win no matter the personal costs.

    Indeed, the 6-foot-7 Holland is the opposite. He is a former star basketball player at Davidson, a Final Four coach at Virginia and later athletics director at Davidson and then Virginia. Now, late in his career, he is taking a stand where most Division I ADs don’t dare to tread. He rejects the impatient mentality that warps college revenue sports and nearly imploded ECU’s football program.

    Holland wants ECU to win, but he’s not demanding a BCS bowl, annual trips to the NCAA men’s basketball tournament or the College World Series. He expects ECU’s teams to be competitive in all sports, but the biggest wins will be measured by athletes attending class and graduating.

    When it comes to ruthless, Holland isn’t.

    “I’m very self-conscious about [the firings],” he said following a Monday news conference held by his new football coach, Skip Holtz. “I don’t think that’s ever been my nature. I’m not a knee-jerk person. I don’t think of myself as a hatchet man. I think I get along with people pretty well, so, yes, it has been agonizing.”

    Holland, 63, was on what he called “a retirement track” when ECU offered him a five-year contract at $276,000 a year. ECU didn’t want him to just run the athletics department. It wanted him to heal it.

    ECU’s once vibrant athletic community was bitterly split by the firing of longtime football coach Steve Logan after the 2002 season and the disastrous two-year tenure of his successor, John Thompson, who went 3-20.

    Men’s basketball was mired in a 70-98 record after six years under coach Bill Herrion. Popular baseball coach Keith LeClair fell ill with Lou Gehrig’s Disease and stepped down in June 2002. Holland decided his replacement, Randy Mazey, was not working out despite a 120-66 record over three years.

    Since taking over in October of 2004, Holland has replaced Thompson with Holtz, who’s now 3-4; Herrion with Ricky Stokes, who played under Holland at Virginia; and has named baseball assistant Billy Godwin as acting coach after replacing Mazey on Oct. 10.

    Meanwhile, Holland is trying to refocus an athletics department that spent heavily on facilities under athletics director Mike Hamrick, but saw the football program suffer as Hamrick clashed with Logan. Hamrick left to become athletics director of UNLV in August 2003, leaving ECU to tread water under an interim AD and an interim chancellor.

    Now Holland wants to restore the confidence and image of an athletics program that built lavishly to keep up, only to fall back competitively and find itself left behind by Division I conference realignments that took away nine fellow members of Conference USA at the end of the 2004-05 season.

    “This is a school that the BCS and all the short-sighted approaches to college athletics have hurt in different ways,” Holland said.

    Holland is trying to right athletics by connecting them to academics. He has imposed a new policy for athletes who miss class without an excuse. Miss one, and you miss practice and pay the price. Miss two or three, you miss a road game. Miss four, you lose your scholarship.

    “We’re not going to have less expectation of your classroom attendance than of your practice attendance,” Holland said.

    Holland is critical of the new NCAA policy that requires athletes to show progress toward graduation. He said that approach only leads to more tutoring and invites academic fraud.

    “The NCAA is paying lip service to what they need to do — get the kids in class if you want them to succeed,” he said.

    An ECU athletics director may seem an unlikely advocate of academic standards since the school still accepts athletes who do not qualify academically to be eligible as freshmen. Atlantic Coast Conference schools do not accept such prospects.

    Holland said the ACC’s higher standard is an illusion since ACC schools take non-qualifiers after a year of prep school or two years of junior college. At ECU, non-qualifiers must pay their own way their first year and cannot compete.

    “The kids we take under those conditions … have to earn the right to put ECU on their chest,” he said.

    Holland knows ECU must play well enough to keep fans interested and pay the cost of athletics, but he wants his work judged by how well athletes compete in the classroom and whether they graduate.

    “Maybe we can use East Carolina to do the job in a better way,” he said. “I’m sitting here yapping at the NCAA leadership for not doing anything. Maybe I should put my butt on the line and show it can be done.”

    Columnist Ned Barnett can be reached at 829-4555 or [email protected]

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