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Comments about ‘Dick Harmon: Former BYU players insist that fans don't know the real Bronco Mendenhall’

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Published: Monday, Dec. 10 2012 7:20 p.m. MST

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Duckhunter
Highland, UT

The disconnect is not because Mendenhall doesn't explain himself well enough, the disconnect is because Mendenhall has such obvious contempt for the fans. He has made comments about the fans and how little respect he has for them. Add to that his propensity to talk in absolutes, his unwillingness to admit when he personally makes a mistake, and his lack of charisma and it has resulted in a fanbase that has little tolerence for the mistakes he does make. If he simply gave fans credit for maybe knowing a thing or two about the sport, and behaved as if they were actually the important part of the program that they are then he may find that fans would cut him some slack. But that is a two way street and Mendenhall does not cut the fans any slack.

I remember when they got lit up by Florida St a few years ago, Mendenhall went on and on about how the players didn't execute the defensive gameplan well enough when it was obvious that his game plan stunk. He was dropping guys back and giving up the underneath and FSU took it. Take responsibility Bronco.

Pragmatic
Salt Lake City, UT

I am so tired of hearing about this guy..he is a bore.

Real Bass
Idaho Falls, ID

Me thinks thee doth protest too much. Who cares how distant he is as long as he is making good choices and winning important games. His decisions regarding Riley are outrageously wrong and have left this season in shambles! That will never be undone. Just watch how this season affects fan support (financial) in coming years. Sooner than you think, things will change.

Remember the Marriott center was regularly full before roger. I wonder how long it will take to refill les with the horrible schedule and offensive explosion we call BYU football.

Cinci Man
FT MITCHELL, KY

I understand where these former players are coming from and I value Bronco's presence at BYU. He is a good man; an excellent example to these young men. The respect he gets from the players is well deserved. I have my problem in that I have believed Bronco's assessment of the teams potential approaching the season and in the earliest parts of the season. Early into the season, I have been disappointed that the team is really not nearly as good as I was led to believe. Sure, they beat most WAC teams, but they rarely win the big games. A 10 win season is a reachable goal when you only play 2 great teams. Once in awhile I'd like to beat a good team, and I'm led to believe each year that they likely will. Now that I have lowered my expectations the same year that BYU secured more great teams to play, BYU continues to NOT beat the good teams and their record is exactly where I predicted it would be at season's end. An undefeated season was reachable this year, but with Nelson on the field, it was not. Too bad.

Cougarbaseball
Rifle, CO

I loved this article because we finally heard from players who have a far better understanding of the coaching than fans. I don't blame Bronco for not listening to the "fans" because the only ones he doesn't really listen to are the ones who truly don't have a clue. He has been the best coach BYU has had in my opinion. He has won a higher percentage of games with tougher schedules than BYU has ever played in the past, and yet certain fans can only find problems with him when his teams lose close games to some really good programs. BYU played five teams that ranked in the top 25 at regular season's end. When was the last time that happened. They also lost to the number one team in the nation (at regular season's end) after taking a lead into the fourth quarter. BYU teams under other coaches would have been blown out of most of these games, but Bronco has teams that can compete.

nunya
sacramento, ca

looks like the deseret news won't post what i put up earlier so let me just simplify it and say bronco needs to go...i agree with everything Duckhunter said and disagree with everything bronco is.

fan32
St. George, Utah

Why are fans complaining about Bronco. Isn't head coaching all about hating the press, disdain for the fans, unintelligent interviews, horrible on field decisions, and most importantly never reading newspapers, listening to sports talk or watching tv sports. And how about that great coach's show on tv. We get a two minute interview after each game with soft ball questions. What are all the loyal fans complaining about? I just don't understand it.

Y Grad / Y Dad
Richland, WA

nunya

And you've said it all. I agree totally with Bronco and I disagree (respectfully) with the people who are OVERLY ticked at Bronco.

The one thing that matters: whether he was being too loyal to Brandon or Riley, or simply was too invested in his own perceptions, Riley should not have been playing hurt, and the decision to do so cost us winable games.

But beyond that? I prefer a coach that says what he thinks, even if it requires a diagram to figure it out, to a coach that is a PR spin machine. I prefer a coach whose competitive drive is greater than any of these complaining fans, yet whose commitment to the values that represent BYU, and the University that sponsors it, is greater still. I prefer a coach who values his private space, and then gives that private space to the building of individuals who happen to be football players.

So we'll see. If the big bucks donors believe Duckhunter on this one, then we will drive one of the finest men in football away from the program that needs him most. If the big donors, and the Brethren, agree with me…

Y Grad / Y Dad
Richland, WA

Ooops.

"and the CHURCH that sponsors it,"

OmahaCoug
Omaha, NE

Yes, it's been a frustrating season. Yes, we've wondered about some of Bronco's decisions. But Jadon Wagner summarized it succinctly: "He is asked to do the impossible: Win games and hold athletes accountable to a very strict BYU Honor Code." How soon we forget the mess that Gary Crowton created, bringing in players who blatantly violated the Honor Code while producing three consecutive losing seasons. I like Bronco Mendenhall despite his flaws (real or imagined), because he understands that BYU is unlike any other football program in America. It HAS to be different, and he gets that. He's still managed to lead the Cougars to eight consecutive bowl invitations and has a virtual tie with the legendary LaVell Edwards for best winning percentage of any BYU coach ever.

Go, Cougars, against San Diego State.

fan32
St. George, Utah

And why was LaVell Edwards legendary? He enjoyed the press, loved and gave time to the fans who loved him. I hate to dissappoint you Bronco lovers but it isn't all about the boys and how they love him. Head coaching goes way beyond that . How soon have you forgotten the LaVell Edwards example. It can be both ways. We saw 20 years of it. If Bronco wasn't so arrogant, he should look up and see who's name is on the stadium that he and the boys play in. Hey, if I made over $1,000,000 a year paid for by donars and fans, I wouldn't give them the time of day either.

OmahaCoug
Omaha, NE

Y Grad / Y Dad,

You said what I was trying to say. Thank you.

007
Layton, UT

Yes, Bronco is a great person and defensive coordinator with extensive football knowledge. That's not the issue. The issue is going 7-5 and losing to WAC teams. Moral victories are lame. Who cares how many ranked teams you play or how CLOSE you came when you don't beat any of them?

ufafelloffasofa
kearns, UT

As a former player under the Edwards era, I remember Coach being great with interviews and impromptu social gatherings. He was awesome! Bronco doesn't have that gift and as a result, so many are unhappy with him. It's too bad some of our fans need apologies, emotional validation, and/or a coach that gives them warm fuzzys after a heart breaking loss. I've attended every home game and am impressed with the quality of men on the field. Bronco is a great man and I would have loved to play under him.

BYU DUDE
Provo, UT

Riley Nelson & Bronco RG3 has something to say to you ,

"I knew I needed to get out at that point," Griffin said. "I couldn't move. At some point you have to do what's right for the team. And if I'm playing the rest of that game, I probably would have hurt myself even more."

BlueHusky
Mission Viejo, CA

Wow. I mostly agree with Bronco re the fans on SLTrib and DesNews. Most are ... naive. Bronco is a complex man and an excellent motivator and coach. And he recruits. This is the most athletic team BYU has ever had. That's Bronco. We're moving into a different world - a highly visible, highly competitive world. Every bit as competitive as Utah's move to the PAC12. And pretty much the same results.

That said, I've made many posts of the Nelson situation. I love the guy, but he can't throw. When he stopped being able to hit his receivers, he should have been benched. Doman was an option QB and wanted a mobile QB. That was his philosophy. Bronco backed him up.

Perspective: Kiffin at USC stunk up the joint. Sarkesian at UW had an uneven season, beating Stanford and losing to WSU. Angel fans were calling for Scioscia's head. Laker fans going crazy about this losing team and they've already fired one coach.

Let's see how Bronco moves on from this disappointing season. And Doman? He'd better win the Bowl Game.

Duckhunter
Highland, UT

@ Y grad

Uh....I haven't been calling for Bronco's head, to the contrary I have posted on here many times, especially over the last few weeks, that I think Bronco has earned a mulligan and he is still the guy for the job. The difference is that I can also see what the problems with him are and where they stem from. He has criticized the fans many, many times. He has insulted the fans and demeaned them. He has never admitted to a single mistake he has made even when they are obvious. If he was simply semi cordial towards fans, instead of acting as if they are all nitwits, parasites, and a nuisance, then he would not be getting all of the criticism he is getting.

He is his problem. His behavior is his problem. He needs to realize that without fans there is no program. He needs to understand that fans may be unreasonable and unrealistic at times but fans are paying for the priviledge of being that way while he is being paid a million a year because of those fans.

higv
Dietrich, ID

As for the game in Boise if Byu would of made it would of been hailed as a hero. I seen some players go for three in bball and two and won when they should of put it in overtime. Can't argue there though not best thing to do. Elder Edwards took calls after game not sure if Elder Mendenhall does. Good coaches and men I think. This season has been a disappointment. That is part of life of a sports fan though. Hopefully they will do ok in San Diego. With half the teams going to bowl games now I think that accomplishment is not as serious as it once was.

Mortoon
Idaho Falls, ID

Whatever else you think of bronco, his handling of quarterbacks in the Nelson era is indefensible! Only a fool would try!

Dr. Chim Richalds
ROUND HILL, VA

This next year will give Bronco and Doman an opportunity to redeem themselves. I'm glad they think Taysom Hill is the answer but personally, I don't think he has what it takes to beat top tier programs. I think he's a glorified version of Riley and that's just not going to get it done. To me, Bronco is a great, tremendous, unbelievable PRACTICE and CONDITIONING coach. On gameday, he needs to be the leader and decision maker in all facets of the game. Of course your team is going to tell you on the sidelines that they think they can make the 2 point conversion or go for it on 4th and 5 but the coach is supposed to have the wisdom to override the emotion. He seems to be a great guy and good for the school. I think he's earned another season to show that he can overcome a bad season. Unfortunately, losing seasons as an independent have too many far reaching effects (TV deals, recruiting classes, bowl games, relevence, etc.) We need a good year in 2013!

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