Monday, August 06, 2012

Quoting Pelini Out of Context Getting to Be A Pattern for the World-Herald

Dirk Chatelain had some good observations in today's World-Herald about Bo Pelini's recent comments about his players dealing with the hype that surrounds Husker football in Nebraska. He's absolutely right that Nebraska football dealt with even greater scrutiny in 1995, especially with the Lawrence Phillips controversy. He's absolutely right that the scrutiny that top college football teams face today is even greater than that.

And it's the job of Bo Pelini to train his players to deal with that.  Absolutely spot on.

But you know what's funny about all that?  If Bo Pelini were to actually read that comment, he'd probably agree.  In fact, he'd probably say something like "in other news, water is wet and it's effin' hot in Nebraska this summer."

Chatelain was likely referring to this quote from Pelini at Big Ten Media Days in July:
“You tell your players: Don’t read the blogs, don’t do this and that. But they’re human, they hear it, they see it.“I as much worry about it when things are going good as when things are going bad … because they ride the waves.You guys know. Not just the media, but I’m talking with the fan base, or in town. You play good and you’re the ’85 Bears. You lose and the sky is falling. Or you don’t play well and the world’s coming to an end. There’s not a lot of middle ground.”
But he missed this one that his co-worker Sam McKewon provided:
“That is a challenge here. But it's just the way it is. It's not going away. The fans' passion for it, and media, that's a positive. But there are issues with that, too, that relate to our football team and how you keep them focused.” 
Both Chatelain and World-Herald columnist Tom Shatel disregarded Pelini's statement that fan passion is a positive...and wrote the exact opposite.

I never read Chatelain's original blog post from last week; I simply don't read Chatelain anymore. At times, he just writes some of the most ridiculous and absurd things. But I do subscribe to the daily World-Herald, and they recapped it in Sunday's print edition, and stumbled into the headline before realizing it was Chatelain's work.  The headline in the paper was "Fan passion not a disadvantage", which frankly isn't that different from "the fans' passion for it, and media, that's a positive," but Chatelain tried to spin it to be different.

Unfortunately, a lot of people do read the Sunday World-Herald, and now, for the second week in a row, the World-Herald has taken something Pelini said out of context and twisted it 180 degrees from what was actually said.

Was this mistake a coincidence? Is it merely trying to manufacture a controversy?  Or is this sour grapes for Pelini's dressdown of Chatelain after the Ohio State game?  No matter how you look at it, the World-Herald's attempt to double-down on this bogus storyline really makes the daily fishwrap look bad.

And if you come across a Husker fan who only read the World-Herald's version of this report, do what Chatelain and Shatel didn't, and give them the rest of Bo Pelini's comments on the situation.

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