No Sideline Antics For Lovie

December 11th, 2015
"Jiminy Christmas, Lovie! Fans want to see a coach freak out on the sidelines like Curly Howard. Cussing was my best skill."

“Jiminy Christmas, Lovie! Fans want their coach freaking out on the sidelines like Curly Howard. Cussing was my best skill.”

Joe always gets a kick out of fans who want to punch a wall because Lovie Smith is stoic during games, often deep in thought. In control.

Contrast that to the lone Bucs coach to hoist a Vince Lombardi Trophy aloft in victory, Chucky. When Chucky prowled the sidelines, he was a maniac hollering, screaming and cussing. It was a workout just watching the guy.

Joe is pretty sure that is one reason Chucky was so popular. He was a cartoon character on the sidelines.

Earlier this week, Lovie was asked about his demeanor. He asked about keeping his cool even during trying times, except when Akeem Spence made a dumb personal foul against the Giants and Lovie — for him — exploded, and hollered for Spence to get out of the game.

“I have confidence in what we’re doing and it just doesn’t do an awful lot of good to fly off the handle,” Lovie said. “I’m not the entertainment on the sideline. People don’t really care what I’m doing. I have to keep a straight head and try to stay in the game as much as anything. That’s what I try to do for the most part.”

Yes, Joe always gets a crack out of fans flipping out because Lovie doesn’t flip out.

Shoot, most of the greatest coaches in NFL history were cigar store Indians on the sidelines. Paul Brown, Chuck Noll, Tom Landry, Bud Grant. Then again, you have those who freaked out like Vince Lombardi, John Madden, Tuna Parcells and Hank Stram. Bill Walsh and Bill Belicheat are somewhere in the middle.

It reminds Joe of a story old man Bobby Bowden told Joe about how to act as a coach during practices and games.

Years ago, when NFL training camps opened around the Fourth of July, college coaches would often hang out at NFL camps to learn what they could from the NFL (and, of course, to network). That rarely happens now, as both camps start about the same time.

When Bowden was coaching at Howard, he used to drive to Cleveland and Green Bay and try to learn what he could from Brown and Lombardi, respectively — one week in Ohio, the next week in Wisconsin.

“You’d go to Ohio, and Paul Brown was so quiet, he’d whisper, he’d just whisper,” Bowden remembered. “And you’d go to [Packers training camp] and Lombardi, why, he’d cuss and holla and scream all the time. But that was OK, because he’d go to communion the next morning.”

In other words, Bowden told Joe he learned by observing Brown and Lombardi that you have to be yourself as a coach. He learned that there is no connection to how you behave on the sidelines and how good of a job you do.

10 Responses to “No Sideline Antics For Lovie”

  1. BucsFanForever Says:

    Just be yourself…unless you are a loser.

  2. tdtb2015 Says:

    Well, we tried the hollering rah, rah college coach. That got us to Lovie. So, I guess that worked for us. Then we got a coach to treat adults like adults and is working just perfectly right now. So, Bowden was right on track. It’s all good.

    As simple as that!

    Go Bucs!!!

  3. Espo Says:

    Be yourself, unless you can be Chuck Norris. Then be Chuck Norris.

  4. Buc1987 Says:

    I think fans want an animated coach to scream at the players, because they themselves are screaming at the TV. Simple as that.

  5. Couch Fan Says:

    I could careless if he screams at the players, i rather see him scream at the referres when they make a bad call, which is quite often.

  6. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    Agree with the thrust of this piece…there are many ways to get the job done.

    I think Don Shula is the greatest coach of all time. He won different ways…different QB’s…some HOFers some not..

    I thought Shula had the perfect demeanor on the sideline. He has that square jawed determined look most of the time….but occassionally he’d go off and he could scream with the best of them. He had a good balance

  7. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    His language was one of the two things I hated about Jon Gruden. I’m not a fan of foul language. Has to do with being a gentleman and a father.

    The other thing I REALLY hated about his was his inability to be honest with his players. He would tell them one thing and do the opposite constantly.

    While Warren Sapp swears by the man, take it from the source.

    Gruden would name someone starter, then bench them a week later. He gave no time for development. He is a finisher, not a developer. And even in regard to finishing, he won a superbowl with a huge advantage. He had the team mostly ready made, and he knew the exact offense they would face in the bowl game. Play by play.

    Perhaps he knows this and that is why he refuses to coach again. It might expose him.

  8. orlbucfan Says:

    What is that critter in the picture? My eyes deceive me. Is that upchucky Gruden? Ugh! Glad he’s history. Go Mighty Bucs Sunday!!

  9. godzilla13 Says:

    I like Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians. When his team could not convert a TD late in the game he was not a happy camper. I think the players got the message.

  10. Pierce Says:

    I didn’t know that Bowden did that. Great story