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Everything is wrong with Gary Andersen's decision to leave Utah State

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  • sls Columbia, MO
    Dec. 24, 2012 5:55 p.m.

    I wonder if Andersen will offer Badger scholarships to his own sons? It may be harder to convince Wisconsin faithful that they merit a free-ride because their dad's the head coach.

  • Rikitikitavi Cardston, Alberta
    Dec. 24, 2012 11:49 a.m.

    Puts a coach in a huge no-win position to get questioned BEFORE the bowl game about leaving. If he says "no comment" you clearly have your answer! Big let-down for his players. Give GA some serious slack folks. He has no chance of coming out ahead on this one any way you look at it. He did the right thing for his team.

  • statman Lehi, UT
    Dec. 22, 2012 8:02 p.m.

    Soup nailed it. Anderson is not "all about the money" as some here suggest. He was offered 2 to 3 times the money to go to lousy programs in big-time conferences, and he turned them down. He told the media he was staying. Money wasn't enough to get him to leave Logan.

    But then he got a big money offer to go to a GOOD program in one of the big-time conferences, and he decided to leave. It's a better job for him in every respect - better money, better program, better facilities, better conference, better recruiting, you name it, Wisconsin is better than USU. There are very few coaches at any level of coaching who would turn down an offer for way more money at a school/program that is better in the long-run in virtually every regard...

    As to "honoring his contract" - contracts have penalties for both sides should they decide to end them early. Wisconsin is likely paying USU some cash to buy-out Anderson's contract. The contract was not "broken" - Anderson just chose to exercise the opt-out provisions of the contract. This is in no way dishonorable or dishonest.

  • Owl Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 22, 2012 5:11 p.m.

    You nailed it.

  • tlaulu Taylorsville, Utah
    Dec. 21, 2012 9:28 p.m.

    Coach Anderson was one of your disciples out there in Cache Valley. Now he's left and some of you "sought occasion against him". I wish him the best.

  • soupnazi las vegas, NV
    Dec. 21, 2012 7:22 p.m.

    The man took a job with an elite program that offered after he rejected Cal of the Pac-12 and Kentucky of the SEC. At some point people and the author of this entirely idiotic take on the situation might realize he did this to better himself after he bettered a program and respectfully parted ways. 107 calls made to each student athlete? Not 1 of them was upset at him for this decision. This man was and is nothing but class yet people and a hack writer attempt to pull a dupe job on his character. Sad that you hear and read about this crud. Time to grow up.

  • Born in Provo Logan, UT
    Dec. 21, 2012 12:08 p.m.

    The golden age of football is over in Utah. Mendenhall-Wittingham-Andersen is the best trifecta in the state, to my knowledge.

  • JonnyDanger HOUSTON, TX
    Dec. 21, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    2nd-It is unfair to the small schools, but the small schools are small precisely because they don't have the money to be big schools. That is really why they make the contracts-so the school will get some kick-back when the coach moves on, or the coach will get some kick-back if he's fired. Petrino at WKU is getting paid $800k next year, with a $1.3M buyout-that's smart contracting! WKU knows they are a stepping stone, but they hope to get the most out of a great coach (not a great person) while he's there and get some $$ when he moves on.

    Be grateful for the incredible work Anderson did and hope you find another good coach. The alternative to having coaches poached is NEVER having a good coach...

  • JonnyDanger HOUSTON, TX
    Dec. 21, 2012 10:39 a.m.

    1st-It is ridiculous to berate Anderson over this. Three weeks ago I'm sure he was absolutely planning on staying. Perhaps one week ago he was planning on staying. And what would you have him say? "I'm happy here unless something comes along" If he was dumb enough to say something like that, he wouldn't be smart enough to be a good coach.

  • Ifel Of'a-sofa Alpine, Utah
    Dec. 21, 2012 10:25 a.m.

    As an Aggie and Alum... I am find and understand Coach Andersen leaving for Wisconsin.

    I am tired of hearing everyine say he dod nothing wrong though. He lied people! Just because all coaches do it and its the new normal does not make it right.

    Is this what you would teach your children?

    Robinson was right on with his article... coaches need to stop saying one thing and doing another.

    Gary could have left USU a hero in everyones eyes... instead because of his own doing, some people think he is tarnished.

    He is a great coach and took a bottom dwelling team to the top 20 in 4 years. What he did for USU was great. I am happy for what Coach A did and wish him well, I was just disappointed in HOW he left.

    They can use very dofferent words to say they plan on staying until a better offer comes along... instead of making it sound like an outright LIE when they decide to leave.

  • Sports Nutz Smithfield, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:24 p.m.

    @nycgeorge,

    You are either a person that people can trust or you are not? I guess it's up to you to decide where you fit in?

  • Backtothebasics Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 6:57 p.m.

    I'm married to a football coach and this job is not like a business executive who would leave at the drop of a hat to make more money, improved conditions, etc.and really has no human ties to a job. His leaving doesn't affect 100 young men. We're talking about a position where you are mentoring real people, young men who perhaps need a father figure in their lives, who have problems, who look to their coaches for inspiration, discipline and yes, let's be honest, love. Now, in my mind, that is what GA is walking out on. He says he loves these kids and he probably does, but obviously in his case the money is more important. A coach who sticks around and goes through the thick and thin, in my book, is more to be admired than someone who walks out when the next best offer comes. GA has coached at least 12-13 different places in what, the last 20-22 years? That's less than 2 years per school. There's a pattern there and too bad, but it really is the players that get the short end of the stick.

  • junkgeek Agua Dulce, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 6:46 p.m.

    Gary Anderson did the right thing. This article is just sour grapes.

  • nycgeorge Las Vegas, NV
    Dec. 20, 2012 5:52 p.m.

    this article and subsequent reaction says a lot about people....you're either:

    1)a complainer, and live in a 'dream world' of loyalty.....probably have worked for 'the man' for too many years...and life's harsh 'realities' are something you still may not want to accept....very critical of others actions

    or

    2)a realist, and 'get it'...

    I'll guess you'll have to decide where you fall

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 4:28 p.m.

    Gary should have been truthful, and said, " I'm here till a better offer comes".

    That's good PR, and would really help with recruiting.

    Face it! If politicians would keep their campaign words, we'd have a smaller government, and no national debt.

  • JimAg7 South Jordan, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 3:25 p.m.

    Sad to see GA go. Doesn't feel as bad a Johnel Smith's dessertion, and he's certainly left the pgm in good shape with 17 returning starters. Still, hard to swallow after teasing us with "I'm staying." Then again, I'd jump for $2 mill too.

  • ClarkeinAK Anchorage, AK
    Dec. 20, 2012 1:55 p.m.

    Can somebody please make Bronco the same deal???

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 1:49 p.m.

    @toosmartforyou

    There are only 3 HS football stadiums in Texas bigger than 18000 - Allen, SA, and Mesquite.
    I've been to 2 of those for games.

  • AZJazzFan Gold Canyon, az
    Dec. 20, 2012 12:16 p.m.

    I agree with many points except the one regarding the players being allowed to switch schools without penalty. Can you imagine the can of worms that would open????? If this were the case, QB Chuckie K would be mulling offers from bigger schools who need a QB. Every star player on the smaller schools would be recruited by the bigger schools.

  • regis Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 12:11 p.m.

    A head coach leaves after telling the school and community how much he loves the place and never wants to coach anywhere else. Seems I've heard that story before. ...

    Oh, yeah. Urban Meyer.

    I guess Andersen learned from the master.

    Be careful, Gary. Dan Hawkins had a good thing going at Boise State. Anybody heard of him lately?

  • tdlawton Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:40 a.m.

    Frankly this column reeks of naivety... This is the way the game is rigged so this is the way the game is played.... To use some now out-of-date slang: "Don't hate the player, hate the game."

    Be it Urban Meyer, Gary Anderson, or any other college Football Coach, there are times in their career they are REQUIRED to lie... Like being a CIA agent or undercover cop it is a REQUIREMENT of the job.

    They are not slaves you your favorite University, you know that right? So they have to look at other opportunities and since the opportunities almost always come in Bowl and Recruiting season a College Coach has to lie about his looking at opportunities or he cuts his own throat with fans and recruits.

    As for Gary himself I think it is safe to say he gave the University of Utah 100% of his efforts when he was being paid by Utah, he gave Utah State University 100% of his efforts when he was being paid by USU, and I have no doubt he will give Wisconsin 100% when he is getting paid by them.

    Until the system changes don't complain about the Coaches.

  • VAggie Bristow, United States
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:36 a.m.

    USU has NOT been a stepping stone for much time. that wouldn't be a horrible problem to consistently have, because it means we are winning. What hurts the most about this, and what UU and BYU fans cannot understand, is that he who now coaches Wisconsin, gave us hope, and raised expectations. We essentially had our Cinderella story, and what was supposed to be happily ever after, is now a nasty divorce.

  • Wanda B. Rich Provo, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:17 a.m.

    Amen. Makes you realize just what a rare gem Stew Morrill is.

  • SDM2010 Las Cruces, NM
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:14 a.m.

    For all those haters out there, College Football is not about the college or the football. It is about the money. People think that he has lost integrity due to the fact that he is leaving. Are you not also the same people that would call for his job if he had an 2-11 record? Colleges and communities pressure unpaid or underpaid students and coaches to have loyalty to their school but when they are injured or losing nobody stands by them. 99% of the people forget their names two years after they leave. Good for Coach Anderson, I hope he does well. It is not a moral issue if he stays or goes so stop trying to make it one, it is a deeply personal decision that he has to make. If given the opportunity for a contract that would secure yourself financially for the rest of your life vs an unsecured future I would take the money for every time. USU will soldier on and hopefully the Athletic Director can create an environment that allows other coaches to be successful.

  • SoCalDrew Camarillo, CA
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:15 a.m.

    I believe that USU is holding Andersen to his contract. This is a personal services contract. Enforcement in this case means money damages, probably specified in the contract itself. In a personal services contract you cannot force the person to continue to perform the services, that's too much likely indentured servitude or slavery. The remedy is money damages, which Wisconsin is very likely paying. USU is likely not passing or acquiescing to anything.

  • Me, Myself and I The Promised Land, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:15 a.m.

    @Flashback

    I played for Coach A. at SUU and I can tell you this. His decision to leave had a lot more to do with family than money. Did he make more money at Utah? You bet he did, but money isn't why he left Cedar City. I don't know what career field you're in but I'd be willing to bet if you were offered a better job that would take care of your family for generations you'd be on your way too. Like I've said before on other threads the only people who have any right to be upset are his players and we've seen that most of them have nothing but good things to say about a great man.

  • Tators Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:06 a.m.

    There aren't many LaVell Edwards or Stew Morrills in the coaching world... successful coaches who had and have amble opportunities to leave for more more money and greener pastures, but put loyalty above money. It shouldn't be a big surprise that Gary Anderson isn't one of them. EXCEPT, he made us all believe he was going to be... with promises to his players, press releases to the media and recent contract extensions with the university. He did a very similar thing to Southern Utah less than a decade ago. Deja-Vu.
    How much money is enough? $700k per year is as much as the average person makes in 20 years. At what point does money quit being the determining factor about everything? USU did all they possibly could to make this guy happy, but it still wasn't enough.
    No, he isn't the first to do this, and won't be the last. But to a coach's players, his university program who bent over backwards to make him happy, and to his many fans to believed his press releases and sincerely hoped he was going to be another LaVell or Stew... it genuinely hurts.

  • GJ Greenwood, IN
    Dec. 20, 2012 11:05 a.m.

    I'm sure he took the job because Wisconsin has better cheese, than Cache Valley.

  • manaen1 Buena Park, CA
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:58 a.m.

    "How is one of college football's have-nots supposed to build a program if it loses its coach every three years?"
    *Are they supposed to?
    * Boise State and Kansas State found ways, why not Utah State?
    * In the end, the answer is to offer more incentive to stay than the coach has been offered to leave.

    "Just once, wouldn't you like to see a school stand its ground and refuse to let a coach out of his contract?"
    * That would assure none of the good coaches come to that school
    * Just once, I'd like to see ALL schools stand their ground and refuse to let coaches out of their contracts -- or entice coaches to break them. The problem is lack of unity among the schools; the coaches are just playing the game by the schools' current real rules.

  • Cambrai Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:52 a.m.

    Andersen's head coaching record is 30-31, which is probably exactly what his record will be at Wisconsin if he lasts 5 years. Total head scratcher for those of us who follow the Big 10.

    It is almost a mockery to Big 10 coaches like Urban Meyer, Kirk Ferentz, Mark Dantonio, and Bo Pelini to include GA in the same club. Hopefully he proves me wrong, but winning the WAC is a totally different ballgame than trying to go to the Rose Bowl.

  • Undefeated Hyrum, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:50 a.m.

    No wonder his recruiting of the 2013 class was non existant.

  • SMS Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:30 a.m.

    I agree with Robinson on a lot of the stuff he writes, but this one he couldn't be more wrong. He sounds like many of the bitter Utah State fans on these comment boards, maybe that's because he's a Utah State Alum.

    Stop wearing your emotions on your sleeve and think if you wouldn't do the same thing if you had a better career opportunity with triple the pay. Sorry Aggie fans, Gary has his family's best interest in mind, not yours--just as most people do.

  • plyxply SLC, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:28 a.m.

    If Andersen would've just been honest or not said anything it wouldn't have been so bad. I was at a recruiting trip in Logan with some players this season, the USU coaches promised the recruits that Andersen would honor his 5 year extension no matter what. They said that Coach Andersen would never sign an extension unless he planned on honoring it because he wasn't that kind of a guy.

    I get taking the money and don't blame him to be honest, but the bold faced lies he told the media, his players, and the recruits is what is so bothersome. Of course honesty isn't valued nearly as much as it used to be. It's unfortunate we can't find people to stand up and be honest anymore, especially people who have such a huge influence on young people.

  • CT98 Saint George, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:27 a.m.

    Great article. I know that most people, including myself, would probably do what Coach Andersen did but it would be refreshing to see some loyalty.

    Coach Andersen burned SUU in 2003 and I have never forgotten that. We were scrambling to find a new coach after Andersen left to become an Assistant at another school. Are you kidding me? Thats like a demotion but I guess greed is alive and well in the coaching profession.

  • Austin Coug Pflugerville, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:22 a.m.

    Utah State is no different than most other schools in the MWC, WAC, MAC, etc...that are merely a stepping stone to the bigger conferences and more money. I am very suprised that USU fans bought into Coach A after every other coach for USU has left for greener pastures when they had some success. I just don't see it ever changing for USU which means their football program will continue to have few highs with lots of lows. Coach A did a great job and it is unfortunate he is leaving.

  • Andy Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:17 a.m.

    Sorry but DRob is a socialist living in a free enterprise system. We are all looking for the best situation we can get based on our talents.

    I don't see the problems here and I respect Coach A for turning a failed program around. In fact I'm even more impressed with his savvy of not taking the first big offer, knowing bigger offers would come. Nice work and I wish him nothing but the best.

    I also wish the Aggies all the best in building on this new-found success.

  • alternate Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:13 a.m.

    "SO WHY DON'T THEY JUST SHUT UP ALREADY ABOUT STAYING?"

    I am sorry, but with all due respect, the writer should follow the first part of his own advice. I am sure that on Nov 30th Coach Anderson was sincere about what he was saying. He had just turned down other programs. But that was then, before a really big opportunity came along out of the blue, or should we say red?

    I suggest the writer visit Madison next fall and watch a game at Camp Randall. Then watch a game the next week in Logan. Night and day difference. It is a golden opportunity for his entire family. You don't pass those up.

    I also suspect that Coach Anderson's contract had a buy out clause to cover this situation or the end of the specturm, if USU fired him.

    Personally, I hate to see the Coach leave, but I would have advised him to so. And more importantly, rather than yelling at him, I wish him and his family all the best.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:11 a.m.

    this is silly. Utah State is a minor league school and to expect someone to stay for half the money or less as well as opportunity is unrealistic. Utah State fans need to just accept the fact that they are a building school...a place for coaches go and prove themsevles for bigger jobs.

  • 3grandslams Iowa City, IA
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:11 a.m.

    Robinson you nailed it! Thanks for not trying to spin it like your pal Rock. Hold a man accountable to his words.

  • bulldog72 Holladay, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 10:06 a.m.

    Easy guys, it is common practice for schools to buy out contracts when they hire someone away. If Gary had a buyout (which he would have if USU admin is smart) then Wisconsin will pay it.

  • Utefan7 Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:59 a.m.

    Lifes tough, get over it and move on.

  • 3grandslams Iowa City, IA
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:48 a.m.

    Just another reason to celebrate Bronco and his upfront attitude. Media mocks him but deep down they love this guy. He doesn't leave them with egg all over thier face.

    Anderson lied, no other way to spin it.

  • I Choose Freedom Atlanta, GA
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:48 a.m.

    The more I see what has become of college football the more I admire Coach Edwards from BYU. He could have left and made a lot more money but he chose to stay. Today he has a comfortable lifestyle plus he has a stadium named after him and the admiration of everyone that has ever known him. He will be remembered as a great man long after he is gone and not just a good football coach that passed through the area on his way to some other place.

    Contracts should bind both ways. Yes, a school can fire a coach but they have to buy out his contract. And yes, a coach should be able to leave when he wants but he should have to buy out the contract as well. After all, what are contracts for if they do not have any binding authority with penalties for breaking them?

    To me, it is not so much that GA is leaving. It is all the posturing he did before he left. I thought Utah State finally had a coach with character in the mold of a Lavell Edwards. Guess not.

  • jimbo049 North Logan, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:44 a.m.

    Now we're talking about letting the players skip out. It's true most players come to a school because of the promises of the coaches and they get a raw deal when the coaches leave. But the problem is with the coaches leaving. They're under contract. They have an obligation and yet the schools won't hold them to that obligation because they'll never be able to find someone to replace them when their contracts do expire. If you or I sign a contract we can't simply change our mind because we find something better. Schools take a big risk when they hire a coach to a multi year contract. Coaches should be required to approach it in the same manner.

  • footballisgood Holladay, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:41 a.m.

    He left SUU because they would not pay his assistants more, even though he offered to raise the money himself. He knew Sitake and Roderick were too good of coaches to stick around when they were making $20,000 a year. This guy has battled for his assistants everywhere he has been - he is about a whole lot more than just taking care of himself.

  • fliebynight Billings, MT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:37 a.m.

    Thanks, Doug, for saying what I feel yet I don't hear or read very often. Coaches jumping from school to school used to be a no no, but our permissive culture of anything goes now echoes "you can't blame them for leaving" or "you would leave too if you could triple your salary." For someone making $50K per year, who could make $100K or $150K, I agree with those statements. That is a life changing job decision. For someone making $500-750K, they are already in the top 1% of earners. Bumping up higher in that 1% bracket is not a life changer. It just pads their pockets. It's sad, it's wrong, and I thought Andersen was better than that. It saddens me that he's leaving and I think he'll ultimately regret his decision. I know all of us Aggie fans, and hopefully all college football fans, regret his decision to leave. Thank God for Stew Morrill and his desire to stay in Logan. HE is a great example and a great coach. Thanks, Stew. Glad we have you.

  • Zona Zone Mesa, AZ
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:13 a.m.

    This just in. Wisconsin's football program is vastly superior to Utah State's in every way.

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:07 a.m.

    Oh come on. He stayed at SUU for like two weeks. The chasing of the almighty buck is the problem. People's egos are tied to money. The more they make, the better they feel. Football coaches at most institutions are public employees and shouldn't be paid more than the governor of the state that sponsors the institution. If they want to get rich, they can become the head coach in the NFL.

    I used to have some respect for Anderson. Not any more. Is his life changed by making 2 million as opposed to 700K? What's he going to do with the extra money? Swim in it. I have the same problem with pro sports contracts. What was Michael Jordan going to do with 30 million a year? Spend more gambling? It is an ego thing. Barry Bonds juiced because he couldn't stand the thought that someone hit more home runs than he did. I guess these coaches can't stand the thought of someone getting paid more than them.

  • Where's Stockton ??? Bowling Green, OH
    Dec. 20, 2012 9:05 a.m.

    Oh for crying out loud Doug....why do you think the football is shaped the way it is??? Face it Doug... you don't have all the answers. Understandably Gary Anderson at his level wouldn't want to go to Colorado...that's a hopeless road to travel...and who in thier right mind wants to live in Berkeley...I was born near there and I can't stand the place. But Wisconsin is by far...a great opportunity. So why begrudge the fact that when a really decent offer did come Anderson took it. He's paid his dues...regardless of what you and others might think. Gary anderson doesn't owe you a plug nickle...period!!!

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:57 a.m.

    How refreshing it would be if sports writers moved around as much as coaches do. And, I'm betting for 3x salary and a nationally recognized news outlet, Dick Harmon or Doug R, Brad Rock... would leave the DesNews. They've been there for decades. Think of all the fresh new talent who haven't had a chance in the local market because of these few people's longevity. ;)

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:56 a.m.

    How hypocritical? Had the Aggies loss five or six games,--the community would want him fired.

  • Superzero Farmington, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:55 a.m.

    After all that's been said by Coach A. at the end of the day this is his profession and he made a career choice. It hurts as fans because our commitments rest with the school and team and coaches committmnet or loyalty largerly rests with their families and career objective. I think in the moment Gary meant what he said about staying with the information he had at that time. Obviously Wisconsin offered something professionally that Cal, Colorado, Kentucky, and USU could not--A chance at a National Championship if I had to guess.

    But as Andersen is gone and it's time to move on. My commitment to my school as an Aggie is to get behind this team and continue to support them. They can still build off this recent success. They are better off now than they were 4 years ago. So let's keep this going. Go Aggies!

  • footballisgood Holladay, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:55 a.m.

    But here is what is wrong with the column. Everybody is willing to blast a coach when he does this, but these are the same people, including the media, that would be calling for the coach's head after a few sub-par seasons. There are hundreds of coaches who did not take a better job out of loyalty when they had the chance, only to be unceremoniously dumped when they don't win as many games as everybody thinks they ought to. If you want to say there is no loyalty to players, fine, but there is not a whole lot of loyalty to coaches, either. And by giving Andersen everything he wanted, they made this a much more attractive job for the next candidates. Hey Doug, what if USA Today came calling and offered you 3x your current salary. You wouldn't listen? Maybe the aggie fans should have filled the stands if this was so important to them.

  • Mash76 Provo, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:51 a.m.

    Good article but how many of you when asked if you are going to stay at your current job and you do not see or have a better option would say No. But, how many of you when presented with a better option with way better pay and benefits would stay? If Coach Anderson sucked you all would ride him and his family out of town. Be grateful he took the job in the first place and got the ball rolling and made this job desirable for someone else with the ability keep the program growing.

  • ute4ever West Jordan, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:42 a.m.

    Coaches are in a terrible spot. GA's name started to get mentioned for bigger schools with larger paychecks. Kentucky, Texas Tech, Colorado, Cal. All would have given him a "bigger paycheck", but he declined those jobs. Then every single day he was asked by fans, media, players, recruits, community members, etc what he was going to do. I don't blame him for putting the speculation to rest by saying he was staying. I would be sick of everyone getting in my business too.

    It wasn't for the money because he turned down the "first $1.8 million" paycheck that was interested in him. It was something more than that and, at the time of the comments saying he was staying, he probably felt he was going to. But things change.

    Everyone needs to get off his back and let the man go. He has been good to Utah football (SUU, UofU, and USU) for a long time now and has left them in a better place. At least he leaves USU with a program and team that a decent coach would actually want to come into.

    Good luck Gary.

  • mohokat Ogden, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:37 a.m.

    And life goes on. I am glad the name JOHN L. SMITH was mentioned. What he did to Weber State was beyond and now he is toast.

  • Me, Myself and I The Promised Land, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:37 a.m.

    What a classless attack on a man who has more integrity than any "journalist". Coach Andersen did nothing wrong and nothing anyone in his situation wouldn't have done. It was bad enough reading ignorant comments about Coach A from fans. I'll say the same thing to you Mr. Robinson as I did to them. Only someone who does NOT know Gary Andersen would say the things you have.

  • John Galt Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:34 a.m.

    hamaca
    Baton Rouge, LA
    On the other hand, head coaches get fired when teams don't do well--even with years remaining on the contract.

    Yes, they are. And, they're paid for the balance of the contract.

  • Cambrai Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:27 a.m.

    Completely agree with the article!

    If players have to sit out a year when they transfer, the NCAA should have the same requirement of coaches under contract. Believe me, if Andersen would have been fired, he would have collected every penny that Utah State owed him under the contract. Instead, he threw his commitment to USU out the window and chose not to honor his obligations to the university.

    Hope he enjoys the next 4 years. He is in way over his head and totally out of his league. He had a good thing at USU and won't ever be able to get that good of a situation ever again.

  • CougarBlue Heber City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 8:20 a.m.

    So much for the integrity of signing a new contract. I wonder what the out clause was? Contracts among professional coaches and college coaches are a laugh.

  • You don't know me... STATE COLLEGE, PA
    Dec. 20, 2012 7:52 a.m.

    Thanks for this article. All I hear is that you can't blame the guy for moving on, and I suppose that is true from a business perspective. But if sports are merely a business then they become absolutely uninteresting. I'm not ashamed to admit that I hoped Gary would give USU a great story and stick around for a long time and turn the program around, but that would not be the sensible business thing to do. As a sports addict myself, the only redeeming value I see in my massive time and emotional investment is that you get to find out about the character of players, coaches and fans. It is, in small part, life in a test-tube where people face up to adversity, competition, and opportunity and we get to watch and cheer them on. I think we hope to see the best of humanity come through while watching sports, at least I do. So why am I disappointed? Because Gary did exactly what we'd expect him to do and no, we can't blame him because we'd all probably do the same thing.

  • OHBU Columbus, OH
    Dec. 20, 2012 7:29 a.m.

    It's kind of strange to blast the NCAA in the way that big time programs can steal coaches with impunity (the rich get richer, etc), then at the end say it's unfair that players aren't allowed to transfer. If the NCAA let players transfer when a coach leaves, that would only widen the gap between rich and poor. The best players on USU's roster that got overlooked in recruiting would be immediately picked up by big-name programs. That might actually be fair to the players, but it would absolutely kill USU's chances of continued success.

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 7:12 a.m.

    I don't think you can ask a competitor to stay in a program that can't go anywhere.

    Now if his goal was to create a legacy and stay in cache valley the rest of his life, then he could have easily done that. Like LaVell did in Provo.

    But, you can't ask someone not to advance themselves and not be competitive. If the coaches weren't that way, then we would have high school teams instead of college teams.

  • Varsity Jones Spanish Fork, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 7:08 a.m.

    All good points Doug. Nuts to Andersen. Lies and disloyalties abound with college football coaches. Is there nothing in their contracts to hold them accountable?

  • A1994 Centerville, UT
    Dec. 20, 2012 12:26 a.m.

    Although I was truly stunned to see the news, I have thought it over and we really can't be angry with the guy. I feel bad for the players most of all. They are the one's who got the brunt of this.

    However, as an Aggie Alum and a fan, we have to acknowledge that Anderson essentially pulled the program out of the ashes, dusted it off, cleaned it up, and made it work better than it ever has. It's no guarantee of future success, but he has at least given Utah State a second chance. We are headed into the MWC with a great team returning. It is going to be an attractive position for any new head coach. That could not be said of the program for the past 40 years.

    Regardless of the grand pronouncements he made about staying, I still like Gary Anderson. If the USU football program continues to do well into the future, it will be because of him being there. He should not be remembered as the villain who dumped us, but as a friend who simply moved to the next stage in his career.

  • Kyle loves BYU/Jazz Provo, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 11:40 p.m.

    I agree with Sportsman. Maybe he really did intent to stay at USU. He did turn down other job offers with considerable raises, but when Wisconsin came up they made him an offer he couldn't refuse. Let's be honest if we were all offered that kind of a raise and a more prestigious position almost all of us would do the same thing. It doesn't mean he didn't love USU and intend to stay there. Good luck Gary Andersen and good luck USU!

  • Veracity Morgan, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 11:33 p.m.

    The man who expoused character showed his true character.

  • toosmartforyou Farmington, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 11:31 p.m.

    What is missing from this article is an admission that USU really has no football program. They had the best season in school history and the last 3 home games they couldn't get 18,000 fans in the tiny, out-dated arcaic stadium that would be smaller than many high school stadiums in Texas. Football is NOT king in Cache County and liklely never will be. Unless they play Utah or BYU, USU can't fill their stadium. The population of Aggie Nation is too small and their fan base is pretty skimpy.

    Thay had a great year, but they don't have a program. Even Anderson, leaving after the best record in school history, had a mediocre 27 - 24 record. It's a tough place to do anything on a long-term basis, unless it is to continue the mediocracy.

    And I happen to like the place. I'm just being very frank about their football fortunes. No offense intended, as I wish them the best. How to accomplish that I do not know as the latest jumping by Anderson seems more in line with Opportunity Urban (Meyer) that any of the great renowned legendary coaches of the college game. What's next?

  • JayTee Sandy, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 11:01 p.m.

    Maybe it's time USU went the route of BYU-Idaho and just became an educational institution. This sports thing is a distraction that only benefits a few anyway. If you have to live your life vicariously through sports figures and programs, you're in a bad position. We're becoming like the Romans: Eating our junk from the stands as spectators while other people fight the battles, get the exercise, and reap the rewards. I see a lot of games where the fans are more emotional than the players, even though THEY have no money on the line. This is crazy.

  • Sportsman Salt Lake, Ut
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:46 p.m.

    Colorado and Kentucky are horrible jobs, Cal has massive educational standards that are hard to recruit to and Stanford/Notre Dame usually get the best of those athletes so I can see why Gary didn't bite on the three jobs mentioned. His press conference was on Nov.30th and the Wisconsin job didn't open up until the 4th of Dec so I can see his sentiment when he spoke about staying in Logan and he probably meant it.But if you asked Doug Robinson if he was a DNEWS lifer today he would say absolutely but if ESPN,USA Today or the NY Times asked him 5 days days from now to be their lead writer and tripled his salary he would be outta here, no question about it. Thank Gary for the revitilization of the program and go find another coach. Boise State did it and probably upgraded to Coach Peterson from Hawkins.It is possible to maintain the momentum.Go Aggies, you have proven that this is a good program that can win.

  • hamaca Baton Rouge, LA
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:22 p.m.

    On the other hand, head coaches get fired when teams don't do well--even with years remaining on the contract. So neither side can claim the high ground here.

    Also, holding a coach to the contract? What decent coach would ever come to a school that tries that nonsense?

  • sammyg Springville, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:21 p.m.

    It was a great Aggie season, I enjoyed it. And now the big dump...

    ...and that's the Aggie football we've come recognize all these years. Just when you think the future looks bright... dang it.

    I truly am sorry for the loss of Coach Anderson. I hope another great coach is found really soon to build on what's been created thus far.

  • milkshake St. George, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:10 p.m.

    Love the last paragraph! The NCAA really needs to take a look at the transfer rules. If a coach can up and leave then a player should have that option as well within the same year.

  • RockOn Spanish Fork, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:10 p.m.

    Obvious by many comments here and elsewhere that integrity means nothing. Character vs. $ = $

  • I Bleed Blue Las Vegas, NV
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:07 p.m.

    Just waiting for the first player to challenge this corrupt system. Many of these players sign with a school because they feel they can benefit from the offense or defense the coach is running. Someone new comes in and can change the whole system. If coaches can leave for greener pastures, why not let the players? The money being thrown around in college football is insane. It's time to open things up and allow players to transfer without penalty. After all, it's not about education anymore. Who are we kidding here. I feel bad for the players.

  • VAggie Bristow, United States
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:05 p.m.

    The point being md is that you don't say one thing and do another. If someone were to take a job at another paper, that's fine. But don't say the day before that you are there're to stay knowing full well you plan to leave.

  • Sports Nutz Smithfield, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 10:03 p.m.

    This article hits the nail on the head, great job! Nobody can say it was wrong for GA to take the job but the way it happened was totally against everything he preached to anyone and everyone who would listen. Great Coach, but just tells people what they want to hear and then dogs them.

  • md Cache, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 9:55 p.m.

    Doug. If offered a better job at a better paper in a better location for better money--you would take it too. Get off of the soapbox.

  • Meckofahess Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 9:56 p.m.

    I agree with D. Rob completely too. The coach made statements that sounded like he was above taking the first 1.8 mil per year offer to come along in favor making an important contribution to USU, the players, the community and so-forth. Well, don't let your integrity stand between you and the money coach.

  • UTAG Ogden, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 9:42 p.m.

    Well-written article. Agree 100%.

  • Old Navy Provo, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 9:42 p.m.

    Coach A took the Aggies to new heights. I wish him nothing but the best for the future.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    Dec. 19, 2012 9:16 p.m.

    D-Rob would have done the exact same thing.