Friday, November 26, 2010

Fambrough won’t be rallying KU before Mizzou game this year


One by one, former Kansas University football players stepped forward this week to talk to the current Jayhawks about what this weekend’s game with Missouri means.

As spirited as the speeches were, they generally lacked one thing — hatred.

Former KU coach and notorious Missouri-hater Don Fambrough was not asked by KU coach Turner Gill to speak to the team. Fambrough, a regular at practices under Mark Mangino, has not had the same relationship with the new KU coach, though he repeatedly has spoken out in support of Gill. Asked if Fambrough would talk to the team, Gill cited the former KU player and coach’s health as a reason he would not.

Before leaving his house Thursday for a Thanksgiving dinner at his son’s in Baldwin City, Fambrough said, “Nothing wrong with my health. I fell and broke my hip awhile back, but I’m OK. I’m up and at ’em. I can go against almost anybody in a one-on-one drill. Anybody wants to challenge me, I’m ready.”

For the newcomers on the KU roster, Fambrough’s absence did not mean much. For the veterans, though, it was a tough pill to swallow.

“That’s definitely one of the things you wait for every year, to hear him talk and tell the stories,” senior safety Chris Harris said. “That’s something we always love to hear every year, so it’s been kind of weird. We definitely miss it.”

Gill said Tuesday that he was aware of Fambrough’s feelings about the Tigers. For those who may not know them, here are some of Fambrough’s most outrageous rants:

— In 2005, when Fambrough was asked what he would say about Missouri if someone told him he had to say something nice: “I’ve been thinking about that for years. And I haven’t come up with one good thing yet.”

— In 2006, he recalled a time when doctors told him he needed surgery and recommend he visit a surgeon in Missouri: “I wouldn’t go,” he said. “I’d rather

die. I’d rather die than have some Missouri bastard cut on me.”

— In 2009, when being interviewed by a FOX Sports sideline reporter during KU’s game against Northern Colorado: “I disliked Missouri when I played against ’em. I disliked Missouri as an assistant coach. I disliked Missouri when I was a head coach, and I dislike ’em now. And I always will.”

— In 2009, during that same interview, Fambrough told a tale about a clause in the college fund he started for his young granddaughter: “Right at the top of the policy it says, ‘If you should by any means go to the University of Missouri, this scholarship is null and void.’”

For Fambrough, who vows to this day never to spend a dime in Missouri, the Border War — 11:30 a.m. Saturday at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. — is about much more than football. It’s about right and wrong.

“He definitely takes this game real serious,” Harris said. “It’s not just a game for him. That gives us some motivation.”

Fambrough does not go to the game at Arrowhead because he believes strongly the rivalry games should be played on campus.

“You bet I’m supporting the team, and I always will,” Fambrough said. “This is my school. This is where I got my degree and where I played football. I’ll always be loyal to KU.”

Fambrough, whose salty language when talking about Missouri is in conflict with Gill’s no-cussing policy, said he had been asked to speak at a charity fundraiser tonight at Lawrence Country Club. He will share his feelings about Missouri there.

Gill had former Kansas offensive lineman David Lawrence, one of Fambrough’s all-time favorite players and the current color commentator on broadcasts, speak to the team about Missouri. Former KU linebacker Banks Floodman also shared his thoughts earlier this week.

Though Fambrough won’t be able to address the Jayhawks prior to Saturday’s game, Harris gave a pretty good impersonation of what the old coach might have to say.

“He’s always just like, ‘Guys, you block hard, you block hard and then block two more counts,’” Harris said with a scruffy voice. “He’s pretty much old-school, and he just tells us that every play we have to push even harder. Even if the whistle blows, we have to keep blocking.”


murph 9 years, 3 months ago

More proof, if we needed it, that Gill is a disappointment. When the old stalwarts of a school are disrespected and ignored it's never a good sign. Then to not have the guts to own up to making the snub - claiming Fambrough's health won't let him come - just adds insult to injury. I've found this new staff to be less than satisfying all along, but tried to give them the benefit of the doubt. This, though, is nothing but a cheap stunt and selfishness. You'll be old someday, Turner, and I hope people thumb their noses at you then, too. Believe me, I am thumbing mine right now - big time.

Scott Bonnet 9 years, 2 months ago

I've said we need to give Mr. Gill time to bring his system and fill it with his people, but this proves to me he's just not one of us. He doesn't want to be one of us. He'll never want to be one of us. He needs to leave.

Ben Kliewer 9 years, 3 months ago

I am a Gill semi-supporter...but this is really really disappointing...

Ben Zeppa 9 years, 3 months ago

Created a login just to say how wrong this is... must not be Christian enough to hate a team/school. Passion, as evident by Gill's sideline demeanor is not encouraged, Thanks for coming in and slapping the face of people who have given so much to this team/school. Done supporting Gill, done!

BADD_ASH 9 years, 3 months ago

I am a big Gill supporter but dang, this really disappoints me. I mean I don't know if he didn't want to ask him because he was afraid he would cuss a few times or what. I mean come on these are college students and they hear cussing everyday. I know that he doesn't want it in practice but if this one time its going to get the players pumped up to KICK MIZZOU'S ASS (excuse my french Turner), then it needs to happen. This is now our biggest game of the season since there wont be a bowl this season. WE NEED TO WIN!!!

Cmill1221 9 years, 3 months ago

OK GILL FANS.... I can't wait to see how you defend this classy move.

Kevin Kelly 9 years, 3 months ago

Coach Gill. I am one of your ardent suporters. As a KU alumn from Omaha I have watched your entire career and I am proud to have you be the coach of my team. That being said, we don't have many traditions and I would trade most of the ones we have for 4 more garunteed wins a year.

But the traditions surounding the Missouri game are not to be messed with no mater what. Whatever issues you make an exception. You leave the room. Do what you have to do but this is one of the last links we have with a part of our past that we are very proud of.

This is not another game. Just one of 12 games we get ready to play.

To quote the entirety of my letter to Mark Mangino in mid January 2008, "Nice season coach. Beat Missouri."

ohjayhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I'm of the school of thought that Gill will get the football team turned back around in time. However, as others have said, this is indefensible! Let Coach speak!

seewillie 9 years, 3 months ago

Jeez...this has been a tradition since I went to school there, my son played for Mangino and absolutely loved when coach Fam came in to speak. I'm quite certain 95% of the KU football fans out there don't want this tradition to cease. There's so many colorful stories associated with Fambrough and other coaches....this tradition should definitely continue as long as Fanbrough is alive....and beyond. You wouldn't catch Bill Self messin' with somehting like that before an MU basketball game. Hell MU probably has old Norm Stewart talk to their guys. Leave it alone Turner....let the guy speak!!!

RockCaCO3 9 years, 3 months ago

I'm one who wants to give Gill a chance, but this is disappointing........

ahpersecoachingexperience 9 years, 3 months ago

For once a gill article where everyone is one my side! Tisk-tisk cussing coach fam. I heard next year the team will not be allowed to watch pg-13 movies.

Bill Cushing 9 years, 3 months ago

Having Coach Fam speak before the MU game is part of what makes us the University of Kansas. Very disappointing as has been said. Lets change the Fight Song so that we can "start over" with football????????????

Andy Smith 9 years, 2 months ago

If Fam doesn't speak to the players, how will they know that Quantriile's men raped our horses?

Christopher Hauser 9 years, 2 months ago

Coach Fam has given his heart and soul to The University of Kansas despite being shafted by the same institution on several occasions. Coach Fam is The Universtiy of Kansas and this is a shame that he will not be speaking to the players.

ahpersecoachingexperience 9 years, 3 months ago

when asked if coach fam would speak gills respons was someting similar to this

Maracas 9 years, 3 months ago

Gill hasn't even been here one year and he's already dissed Coach Fam, the fans, and a much-beloved part of the KU-MU rivalry tradition. It's just another reason why this Nebraska guy doesn't belong here.

holtzymal 9 years, 3 months ago

Wonder how Coach Gill will feel if he just took away Coach Fam's last chance at speaking to the team prior to a Missouri game? With his health, there is no guarantee...


Jim Pendleton 9 years, 3 months ago

Solomon, first of all the bit about the surgeon is very much embellished. That is what makes part of the routine what it is. I have been to other events Coach Fam has been at where he talks about going to a doctor for years before finding out he went to MU.

Only thing I agree with you on is that he is an 80 something year old man. Yes, in time this speech, in person at least, will someday end. But as long as Coach Fam is with us, and with his history with KU, he should be allowed to make the speech as long as he wants to do it. Heck in time, let's have one video taped (if not done already) so it can be used forever. There is also a commercial run on Metro Sports in KC about the Border War, where Coach Fam says "they're the bad people and we're the good people". I think he has other comments in this also. These should be incorporated into the speeches also.

I am with the majority here. Traditions with this rivalry shouldn't be messed with. I also want to encourage Jayhawk Nation to come to the game tomorrow. Yes, we are a pretty big underdog, but it is our rival, and you never know. OUR team needs us to be there. Rock Chalk!!

jakzhumans 9 years, 3 months ago

Let me see if I have Gill's priorities straight...Swearing, in any form, is a sign of bad character. It's officially frowned upon and has no place on the KU football team. Same goes for talking to girls the night before a game. Bad, character-destroying habit.

But lying to thousands of people is perfectly acceptable. Destroying traditions and disrespecting your elders is also fine. These apparently don't harm character in any way.

I'll remember this the next time I'm told what a great job Gill does in preparing young men for life after football.

swunruh 9 years, 3 months ago

Coach Fam has been under the weather. Gill knew this and didn't lie as someone posted. The big game is still a day away. Maybe now that there has been some communication that Fam is able to address the team, Gill will utilize the old Mizzou hater?

KU_FanSince75 9 years, 3 months ago

****Asked if Fambrough would talk to the team, Gill cited the former KU player and coach's health as a reason he would not.***

OMG, I stopped reading the article at that point. Wait, Fambrough sick? No way. Then, I continued reading.

"Nothing wrong with my health," Fambrough said. "I fell and broke my hip awhile back, but I am OK. I'm up at 'em. I can go against almost anybody in a one-on-one dril, Anybody wants to challenge me, I'm ready."

Man, Gill wake up----geeeze!!!!!! Do you not get it?! The KU/Mizzou game is war, baby. Keep this game competitive, I can live with that. If it becomes a blowout, than that is on your record. Keep in mind, lots of fans and alumni pour thousands of dollars into your program. This will not make a lot of people happy but not letting Fambrough speak to your team. What excuse are you going to give next year? I sorry bubba----you just made a big mistake! You better make it close tomorrow or eventually, you will find a "For Sale" sign in your front yard.

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 3 months ago

I, too, am a believer in Gill, but I'm not getting this at all!

Mike Nicco 9 years, 3 months ago

Wow, what to make of this! I understand a man sticking to his principles inspite of the overwhelming objection of the masses. But Coach Gill is making himself bigger than the program. He hasn't earned that cache yet. This is going to be a building pr nightmare for him

Kcdad 9 years, 3 months ago

My early-season dislike of Gill had started to turn after the CU game. But this is deflating. I get that time passes on and new blood can be good - but ending this tradition makes no sense. Did Gill even reach out to Fam? And does TG not have enough savvy to get the negative signal this sends to folks who are trying to support him?

treidy 9 years, 3 months ago

This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone who has followed Gill's miserable coaching experiment this year.

Andy Smith 9 years, 2 months ago

The implication is there has been class. Uh? Ok. Classy like throwing batteries at football games?

Mike Nicco 9 years, 2 months ago

My post was a reference to my Avatar which was a Mizzou fan giving the "your #1" gesture. I changed it before getting in trouble. I grew up in St. Louis and.went to KU. Tells you what I think of Mizzou.

nicholasu 9 years, 3 months ago

As everyone has repeatedly said, "they are a Gill supporter,optimistic, etc..." you are right, this is the topping on the cake. I believe the underlying factor here is; Coach Fam would motivate and fire these kids up more for this Mizzou game than Gill's lame duck speech he is preparing, "about becoming men, and thought leaders" where Coach Fam's speech will be " Go beat the living sh@# out of Mizzou, regardless how big a disappointment this season has been to the players and fans, beating Mizzou will be uplifting to end the year". Gill you should not only let Coach Fam give his speech, you should take notes!!!!

DevilHawk 9 years, 2 months ago

To be fair: the players should naturally be more fired up for this game than any other game - on their own.

murph 9 years, 2 months ago

Newsflash, DevilHawk. There are kids from all over the country on this football team. The majority of them probably never heard about this rivalry before they get to campus. They need to be taught, and what better professor than Coach Fam? Like someone else said, I'm betting Norm Stewart talks to the Mizzou basketball team before every game with us. Mike Anderson isn't clueless, but obviously Turner Gill is.

DevilHawk 9 years, 2 months ago

I'm not saying that it was the correct decision - but it was not inherently a wrong one.

Gill needs a proper education of the rivalry - there can be no doubt about that.

However, the players should know all about it - regardless of Gill's help. Getting excited for rivalry games lies on the shoulders of the upperclassmen and other students on campus.

FinalFinal 9 years, 3 months ago

Gill continues to assault our football program. Shades of Callahan pulling down the hall of fame or Quin pulling down pictures and ostracizing Norm.

The Gill Era is a complete bust. Run this bug eater back to Lincoln.

DevilHawk 9 years, 3 months ago

This really shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone.

Whenever Gill has been asked about the Mizzou game, you can tell that he doesn't get it - he understands that it's a rivalry and where it comes from, but he doesn't understand the magnitude of the game for the fans and for the states.

Gary Wirsig 9 years, 3 months ago

LJW cleverly stirring up a little controversy - everyone chill out. We only know what was reported, and I believe there's a lot that wasn't told. Matt Tait, is there any other real meat to this story? Coach Fam talked about how healthy he is, not how disappointed or ticked off he is. What was the exact quote by Coach Gill and the context?

Again, chill out everyone. The Coach Fam pep talk was maybe a fun event for the players and we loved reading about it afterward, but did it really ever impact the game? I'll probably get blasted for that last bit of heresy.

Matt Tait 9 years, 2 months ago

The context of the quote was something along the lines of Gill saying he had talked to Fambrough in the past but did not talk to him this week....

Basically, the quote was this:

"He's been having some trouble with his health and our prayers go out to him but, at this point, he won't be talking to the team."

Not trying to stir anything up... It's Gill's program, it's his call. But considering the fact that Coach Fambrough has talked to the team before the Mizzou game every year for the last couple of decades, him NOT doing it is definitely news worthy.

Gary Wirsig 9 years, 2 months ago

Thanks for providing the context. It appears that his statement was meant in a different way than most folks are interpreting. The haters will continue to hate and unfortunately, your article provided them more fuel. Perhaps you could have probed a little and got the full story - then you could authoritatively state whether Coach Gill was telling the truth or not. As it is, you left enough unsaid that the haters of course interpreted it their own way.

Oh well, you can't do anything about the haters - it just seems that the tone of the article and what got left out egged them on.

Thanks again for your excellent coverage of KU sports, Matt.

JJHawq 9 years, 3 months ago

Why did Captain Honesty lie about Coach Fam????

He better win quickly or he's going to have a short career in the big 12 - He may have just lost the small pocket of the fan base that still supports him.

shimjhawk 9 years, 3 months ago

I suspected this the other day. I have tried and tried to give Gill a chance but this is crazy. Gill can talk about about how important it is to beat Mizzou, but his exclusion of coach Fambrough obviously shows he still doesn't get it. Gill should've at least been honest, the reason he doesn't want Fambrough is probably because aren't his speeches are full of swear words? If so, and it seems like I remember reading/hearing that, it would be against Gill's policy for the players. Not saying Gill's policy is wrong/right but just a sad day to exclude coach Fambrough.

KJRFC 9 years, 3 months ago

Unflipin'-believable!!! I have never been impressed w/ Gill, even after beating Georgia Tech and CU, because the talent pool left in Mangino's wake should not be this talent-less. It all comes down to coaching. As I've said before, there are many members of this team that are wearing Orange Bowl rings and experienced two winning seasons, and look at how these guys get to depart KU. Yes, NU and the Tiggers got better, but there's no reason we should be DFL in the North. And how ironic is it that, in the year we drop OU, UT, and TxT from our schedule, UT and TxT are beatable, and the three traditional bottom-dwellers in the South are this year's juggernauts (exception Baylor, although they wore us out).
Gill has instilled too much drastic change all at once. No names on the back of the jerseys, no cussing, all the feel good, happy-happy, joy-joy BS that this team is forced to comply with. Hawkins said it best, "This is DI football, it's (was) the Big XII. If you want a cushy-soft program, go play intramurals." Now, in the only moment that current KU football players have to look forward to (Coach Fam's pre KU-MU game speech) this season, he denies them of this and covers it up with a garbage excuse that has no backing. I'm no longer willing to give Gill a chance to turn this program around. Like others have posted, you don't mess with traditions, especially when it comes to the KU-MU rivalry. The only problem is, the current PC administration (chancellor Gray-Little) at KU won't make any moves on Gill unless he royally screws up (unlikely, given the straight line he follows) or if money stops coming in from boosters/supporters/alumni/fans. This team is not gonna beat MU tomorrow, but now go into the game with a candle instead of a torch fueling their intensity. Gill's gotta go!!!

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 2 months ago

You really lost me when trying to use Hawkins as a standard of what Big XII football should/shouldn't be. Clearly, not a good choice!

bad_dog 9 years, 3 months ago

gdkad-"maybe a fun event for the players"? “That’s definitely one of the things you wait for every year, to hear him talk and tell the stories,” senior safety Chris Harris said. “That’s something we always love to hear every year, so it’s been kind of weird. We definitely miss it.”

Who knows whether Fam's talk impacted the game? I can't imagine it would ever have a negative impact, so why not? Emotions when controlled can certainly affect outcomes and I want our team as fired up as they can be when they take the field. What harm is there in letting a living legacy address the team? Must be the whole "love thine enemy" thing, I guess.

As for the lack of public expression of irritation at not being asked to speak to the players, perhaps Fam took the high road-only stating he was healthy and ready to go. Draw your own conclusions, but I'm guessing there isn't much like for Gill in the Fambrough household this year.

Gary Wirsig 9 years, 2 months ago

Unfortunately, we'll never know about the like for Gill in the Fambrough household unless he's directly asked the question.

In general, I'm with you - I'd liked to have Fam deliver his message to the players, but it didn't happen and we only know the partial story of why - that's the only point I'm making - that we shouldn't get too up in arms unless we know the whole story.

bad_dog 9 years, 2 months ago

Appreciate your comments. Even if asked, I doubt Fam would address it directly or be publicly critical of Gill.

Rock Chalk-beat Mizzery!!

FreddyinLA 9 years, 2 months ago

Mr. Gill, this is not a showdown, this is a War. In the mid 1800’s, those “Folks with Few Teeth” tried to force their slavery ideology down our gullets, but the brave men and women of Kansas would have nothing to do with it. Like cowards, they came in the middle of the night and tried to burn down the city of Lawrence. Heroes like John Brown sent them scurrying back with their tails between the legs. For this reason, men like Fam should be allowed to voice their opinion about tomorrow’s War.

hammerhawk 9 years, 2 months ago

Gill is not worthy of being a Head coach at The University of Kansas. Or any type of coach. Gill was the product of the former athletic director, who was under great duress when he employed Gill. Neither of the two persons were or are any good. The sooner we get rid of the legacy of the worst AD in Kansas history, the better.

Don and I have a similar feeling about missouri.... I hate them too.

packywacky88 9 years, 2 months ago

Well put Freddy. You think fighting a war with the scumbags that were on the wrong side of slavery would get TG pumped up. He doesn't get it. Hey a little history about the crimes the people from Misery committed in the name of slavery. Maybe you'll start to understand.

Matt Kenton 9 years, 2 months ago

Wow, I want a successful program as soon as possible and have been pulling for Gill, but now I am beginning to turn towards hoping he fails, and we bring in someone who 'gets it' AND can run a great program.

55jayhawk 9 years, 2 months ago

I think Gill probably does not want his players to hear the language that will come from Fam's mouth and that's the bottom line. I played under him when he was an asst. coach and he could take you out anytime in a one on one drill. He might not take you out today at his age but I guarantee, you will know you got hit when he was done with you. Coach we all who played under you, love you, and will miss this year's speech you normally give the new Jayhawk players! Folks, I also will say this, if he was in Colorado having Thanksgiving dinner and Gill called him to ask him to talk to the Team today, he would hitchhike, fly, or crawl to do anything for KU and the Football program. For us who received his speech each year, I will always love him for them and his loyalty to KU, and his love for his players! Coach Gill, this is your team and you have to run it your way now, but there had to be a way to let Fam give his speech. It is awesome and hard to be under control in the game as you are so pumped up. Coach, give your players a great speech and have a lot of emotion on the field and with your staff, you can win this one!

LAJayhawk 9 years, 2 months ago

It is not my intention to pile on here, but this is a rather disappointing decision. The Border War is one of the longest running football rivalries in the country, and it's one of the few things with which we actually have tradition, with respect to football. It's just not clear to me the benefit of ending this particular part of the tradition.

What really astounds me about this is that it seems as though a first year coach made this decision without input from his veteran players who he should be conferring with in order to solidify unity. Of course, I am not privy to the daily conversations of the team so I grant that I could be off base here -- perhaps a team vote was taken and news of that is not leaking out due to respect for the former coach, thus Gill takes it on the chin for the team. But with the information presented, that certainly does not appear to be the case. It sounds like Gill chose to cut this out without considering if the players enjoy/benefit from it.

Any first year coach has to adjust to the atmosphere around him as he comes into lead players -- whom he did not recruit -- in the direction he would like to go. Bill Self had to do it. And he embraced it (constantly keeping the door open for former Jayhawks to come back). It just seems simple to me to consult with your players and determine how they feel about the Fambrough speech. If they enjoy it and get an emotional boost out of it -- as that seems to be the case if Harris' comments are any indication of the overall feelings of the players -- then let it happen. This is a simple, seemingly unimportant part of a tradition that effects the emotions of the players and fans. Connect with your team. Connect with the fan base. And, most importantly, embrace the rivalry.

It means a lot to us, Coach Gill.

Rock Chalk.

DaNeille Dani Davis 9 years, 2 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 2 months ago

You use more claims of inside knowledge on this site than any other poster! Are these good friends of yours that are closing up their deep pockets?

FinalFinal 9 years, 2 months ago

Nebraska did not want him, and he is one of their own. Why in the world would we want him?

Hate this hire. Hate him.

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 2 months ago

To compare NU's football program to ours is just silly! Bo Pellini would have NEVER taken a job at KU. We are NEVER going to get to pick from the same talent pool that schools like Nebraska, Ohio State, etc are picking from. It's no different than basketball. Mark Turgeon is a good coach, but Kansas fans would have been pretty frustrated with the hire had we hired him instead of Bill Self. Turner Gill not getting the Nebraska job is not an indictment of Turner Gill.

Gary Wirsig 9 years, 2 months ago

Really, FF? Hate him? Do you have a life?

murph 9 years, 2 months ago

Learn to read, gdk. Final Four said "Hate this hire" not "hate this man". There IS a difference. Really.

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 2 months ago

Not trying to get involved in someone elses spat, but he did, in fact, say "hate him." How did you miss that?

okiedave 9 years, 2 months ago

Gills decision to not ask Fambrough to speak is, in my mind, defensible. I grew up in Lawrence and watched Fambrough coach K.U., be fired, and then rehired as a coach. I shed tears when KU lost. I went to school and ran on the LHS track team with his son. I love the Fambrough tradition and know the significance the Fambrough family has had on KU and Lawrence. I certainly get a kick out of his feelings for Missouri and hope he continues to speak at lots of engagements in the future.

However, I see no particular benefit in Don Fambrough speaking to the team about his feelings for Missouri. It certainly has not seemed to help the last couple of years. I suspect that Fambrough's speeches are more entertaining than motivational. Gill may be wanting the team to focus on how to stop Missouri's offense and perform against their defense as opposed to how Fambrough feels about shopping in Missouri. I for one believe that it is time for the team to move on to winnning on the field of play and not settling for moral victories knowing that Kansas was on the moral side of a civil war battle. Every intelligent person knows that Missouri should be sold back to the French at a loss, but perhaps it is time to move on.

DSommersby 9 years, 2 months ago


I disagree with some of your post about maybe it being time to move on from having Fam address the team. I think we owe it to Fam. It is his cause and he has been a great Jayhawk. Let him address the team and give his takes. His speech does not make us win or lose, but it is a tradition.

I did love the part of your post about selling Missouri back to the French at a loss. Good stuff there.

DSommersby 9 years, 2 months ago

Disappointed in this. I read a lot about Callahan coming into Nebraska and snubbing his nose at a lot of their old guard and traditions. Gill was on Callahan's first staff after years under Osborne and then Solich. I had read it bothered Gill when Callahan declined his invite to have Tom Osborne address the team that first year. Callahan did not let former players back in to watch practice and that ticked people off.

This tradition is something Gill should have continued. His oversight or decision not to do this is exactly what Callahan did in Lincoln. It is not like Fam's Border War speech would have taken a ton of time away from their planning. I am glad to hear that David Lawrence and Banks Floodman addressed the team and others might as well. We should have Coach Fam doing this as well. We owe it to Fam and we owe it to tradition. Come on Coach Gill. Wake up and send a limo over to Fam's house and get him to the team hotel tonight!

Rock Chalk!

beenahawk 9 years, 2 months ago

The problem I have with it is that Gill LIED. Isn't "honesty" one of the quallities Gill claims to instill in young men? If he doesn't want Fam because the language is too "salty" say so. How much research was necessary to find out Fam is healthy enough to speak? Why the charade at this weeks presser? Is Gill too stupid to know it could create a backlash? the answer must be yes! Do we want a guy that dishonest AND stupid coaching our kids? I sure as hell don't!

Gary Wirsig 9 years, 2 months ago

Once again, the article leaves out the exact quote and context. Don't read too much into this incident. Most of us would have liked to have Fam speak to the team, but he's not. Unfortunately, this article is not complete (on purpose?) and leaves too much up to our active imaginations.

rockemchalkemrobots 9 years, 2 months ago

People also seemed a little judgmental after Watergate. I mean, I am sure Nixon had his reasons for it, right? We never got to hear his side of the story... Lousy reporters and their facts.

ZDKC 9 years, 2 months ago

My real question is how much of an idiot do you have to be to think that the press wouldn't find out about this? Of course, I think traditions should be followed, but even more so, Gill shouldn't be trying to deceive the fanbase and/or media. Shame on you Turner Gill.

jayhawktd 9 years, 2 months ago

At what point does Coach Fam become a parody of himself? I think it's cute and all that he used to play at KU, he was just another sub-standard coach at KU (twice no less), and he hates Mizzou, but let's be honest, how many of us who went to KU and have been season ticket holders for every year since graduation aren't just as big KU supporters and hate Mizzou as well? How does that make Coach Fam any different? I like Coach Fam and what he stands for, but come on people, we're digging hard to stay in the past, and the past hasn't even been that glorious. And I say that having been to every bowl game in the past decade.

I think our support for the squad through thick and thin does more for the program than Coach Fam giving a "rousing" speech every year. I think the seniors should step up and relay the importance of this game and getting the players ready to rock. As a player, I'd rather not let down a "brother" of mine in his final college game, than some 80-year old with former ties to the program.

Also, with regard to Coach Gill citing health reasons, I can't imagine that somehow that might not be the case or part of it. My guess is that Gill didn't put on the full-court press, but does anyone really think that Coach Fam wouldn't say that he's ready to give his speech unless he's in a coma with a feeding tube in his mouth and not able to actually speak?

Let Gill do it his way and let's see where it gets us. I am one of the biggest Mangino defenders out there, but let's not forget that he didn't leave much in the cupboard and Gill is already 1 win ahead of the pace that Mangino set in his first year. Mangino had the school's best offense in history paired with a decent defense and tanked it last year.

I for one will be tailgating outside of Arrowhead's gates tomorrow until they let us in and will be ready to fight with the best of them for pride and a victory, but let's quit blowing this thing out of proportion. It'll be the current Hawks on the field that determine this outcome, not our below-average past.

fewopinionsshared 9 years, 2 months ago

Thank you jayhawktd!!! I totally agree... except for being a Mangino defender... sorry... lol... my comment follows a few posts after yours... ROCK CHALK!

DaNeille Dani Davis 9 years, 2 months ago

Well, I guess my last comment got removed because I cussed in it. That must have been Gill's doing. I am so happy to see all the comments supporting Fam on this. I too was outraged when I read what Gill had done. I think he just lost a lot of fans...not that there were that many. I have lost all respect for the guy. And I'm sorry, but I just don't see how you can play a sport like football and not cuss. What the he!! is Gill thinking! I think he's trying to turn our mean machines into pillows. Gill, maybe you should go coach ballet or something other than football.

I was one of the lucky few who stayed till the end of the CU game. I drove 9 hours to see that game...I wasn't leaving. Thank goodness. But all I can say is that the first half, I was cussing and bitching thinking what a bunch of softies we have and that Gill needed to get in their faces and chew them out. I don't know what turned the game around but Gill was getting fired up which fired the team up. Maybe Gill started cussing!

fewopinionsshared 9 years, 2 months ago

Wow... all of this Gill-bashing is quite funny. Yes, I too, am a Missouri-hater, despite the fact I was born there and lived there until I was 7. I am also a proud KU grad. I understand Coach Fam's speech is a "tradition," but as others have pointed out, he'll not always be around to give the speech anyway.

Regardless, all of the Gill-bashers should look at the KU-MU record. It's not like Coach Gill is taking away a tradition from a rivalry that the Jayhawks dominate. Since KU's win in 1995, the Jayhawks are 8-7 over the Tigers. Maybe we need a change! Kudos to Coach Gill for not being afraid to do what he believes as the University's head football coach. Maybe the players will focus on playing the game well instead of the toothless "bastards" coming at them! The players will hear the stories of Missouri-hatred outside of Gill's football program the same as they hear the cussing.

Not to mention, with no disrespect toward our young men intended , I had very low expectations for this year's team, whoever the coach. We lost several seniors in key positions and didn't have a lot of experience to carry forward to this season in those positions. Then, bring in a new coach... Really... I'm glad we have the three wins that we do! I'm eager to see how Gill's recruits and program work out in the next few years. I was never a big fan of the "big" guy anyway. And if Coach Fam wants a "tradiiton" to keep going in his absence, as someone else suggested, perhaps a video (Gill-approved) would be a good idea.

fewopinionsshared 9 years, 2 months ago

Oh, and as much as I really didn't like the guy a whole lot, Mangino was 2-10 his first year as KU head coach and eventually took the Jayhawks to a bowl game. So much Gill-hating that makes little true sense... I'm quite disappointed in some of our "fans" who want Gill gone already. Coach GIll is already one win better than that! Unbelievable folks... It's too easy to trash-talk and be a fair-weather fan... try being realistic and *long-term" supportive!

DaNeille Dani Davis 9 years, 2 months ago

but still, Gill shouldn't have taken away the tradition of coach Fam coming in and giving a speech. Gill has taken everything else away from the team, even their confidence and I see this as being a deflator for our team going into this game. It doesn't seem that anything Gill has done has helped this team win any games. With the talent that was left over, we should have been half way decent but Gill ruined them.

ZDKC 9 years, 2 months ago

...gotta love the Gill lovers. They'll blindly give the guy the key to the city regardless what goes on. Most of this is based off of, "Oh, I've got a feeling" and "Oh, you just have to have faith" and "Oh he'll probably he'll...." In summation, it's based off of a lot of speculation and "hope."

I'll support the guy and cheer on the Hawks as well as be critical this season. But to give him my full seal approval -- you've got to EARN that. It's not going to be based off of hope, faith, or some random gut feeling either.

All I'm asking is to for you to prove me wrong, coach. I'll be happy if you do!

fewopinionsshared 9 years, 2 months ago

Not a Gill lover. Just because some of us don't want him gone already doesn't mean we love him... yet. Hoping to someday love him just as we did Roy and now do Bill in basketball. Honestly, I didn't know who the guy was before he came here. Just giving the guy a real, fair chance. And a coach's first season is not that. Not here. Not anywhere.

areyouserious 9 years, 2 months ago

Did you know??? Phillip Fulmer interviewed for the KU job! Thanks Lew, you successfully built an empire and destroyed it in a short period of time. Now you are hiding, scummmmmmm..........

Turner wont be here after next year.......anybody looked at next year's schedule? 2 wins maybe?

Let Fambrough give the d*mn speech, heck let him coach!

Andy Tweedy 9 years, 2 months ago

I keep reading from Gill haters that "it's all about coaching" and "we have too much talent to be dead last in the North." Well, it certainly is party about coaching, but if that were all it were about, Mangino couldn't have possibly led one team to an Orange Bowl AND finished dead last in the North (multiple times, most notably LAST YEAR). I'm probably getting a rep for being a Gill apologist, but I am simply being pragmatic. He's not getting fired this year, and it wouldn't be fair to him to fire him before he has had a chance to succeed with his own players, his own plan for the program, etc. It might not work out, but it might.

All that said, it's been hours since I first posted that I didn't get it that Fam was left out. I still don't! Although I suppose breaking from the past isn't all bad when the past you're talking about is KU football. Not much to be proud of really!

KU_FanSince75 9 years, 2 months ago

Make it very clear, I am not a Gill hater----just disappointed in his decision not to let Fambrough speak to the team. I think Coach Gill, although he won't admit it, thinks that this is "just another game" on the schedule. I don't think so. Emotions run high in this game. So, it will be interesting to see how this pans out tomorrow. Again, I am willing to give Gill some time, but tomorrow's game is very important, regardless of KU's record. Kind of like when Gill used all of his timeouts the first game against NDSU. Not very smart. This is what I am comparing this to----not letting Fambrough speak to the team. Not very smart. Rock Chalk! Good luck against Missery, Jayhawks!

Roy Scherff 9 years, 2 months ago

I imagine coach Fambrough is okay with this. I personally like it. Kinda like taking the training wheels off the bike.

troutsee 9 years, 2 months ago

My goodness gracious, such emotion over such a small thing. How stupid to think that this is such a big deal. Coach Fam is a great guy and we all like him but, my heavens, is breaking this "tradition" really worth all of this hate and seething anger. I don't get it. The lack of a Fambrough speech is not going to determine the outcome of the game but the demeanor of some of the posts could definitely influence the mood of the players and recruits. I think Tait used very poor judgement in writing this article.

rockemchalkemrobots 9 years, 2 months ago

Wow, your hatred of Nebraska is only surpassed by your willingness to seemingly go along with anything the program does...

I have seen so many posts of yours that decry all things Nebraska, and some fans want to decry the death of a tradition in a rivalry (by a Husker, no less) and the holier that thou comes out. Are you even from our fair state?

John Percival 9 years, 2 months ago

85, now 86 comments. Did anyone really think Gill was going to let Fam speak to the team?

mhbtiger 9 years, 2 months ago

Wow. He really just doesn't get it, does he? No one outside of the KC area thinks this rivalry is any big deal. The Border War has been going on forever. Then suddenly in 1891, a football game broke out.

Usually, the underdog seems to have the upper hand. I feel much more confidant in our chances. Go Tigers!!

mhbtiger 9 years, 2 months ago

Wow. He really just doesn't get it, does he? No one outside of the KC area thinks this rivalry is any big deal. The Border War has been going on forever. Then suddenly in 1891, a football game broke out.

Usually, the underdog seems to have the upper hand. I feel much more confidant in our chances. Go Tigers!!

kureignman 9 years, 2 months ago

Much like most of the comments, I'm disappointed in the decision. However I wonder how many people clammering for Gill to be fired would have also wanted Coach Fam to be fired after his 7 loses in his first year.

Carolyn Troupe 9 years, 2 months ago

Comparing Gill's record to Mangino's 1st year record makes as much sense as comparing it to Fielding Yost's. What's the point? So far as the tradition of Fam speaking, how many other schools have 80 year old coaches giving pep talks to their teams? Does Missouri do that? Does Nebraska, Michigan? Does Penn State?.... Oops, sorry. I guess their team doesn't have a choice. Does the KU student section still hold up newspapers during BBall opponents' introductions? What if Coach Self said that was rude and we should no longer do that? It is a tradition, but life must go on. Some things are tradition and others are Tradition. We need to make a distinction. After all, think about schools like Stanford, changing the sports teams' nickname so as to avoid offending people who had nothing to do with the school.

Timothy Todd 9 years, 2 months ago

Please get a new AD that has the good sense to get rid of the Clown Gill and bring in a real football coach! I know that Gill is beloved in Nebraska so let him go with them. Passion wins, bullsh*t rationalizes, Fambrough is a character, Gill lacks same. Please go.

Maracas 9 years, 2 months ago

Turner Gill needs to take his tired act back to Lincoln. What a collection of assistants he has, too. A fat S&C coach who apparently has no clue about S&C, the worse ST assistant in the nation, 3rd & Long, and "let's play as far off the receivers as we can" Torbush.

gamblinggringo 9 years, 2 months ago

Add me to the long list of former Gill apologists who have now given up. I'm sorry I ever tried. His idiotic rules have grated all season, but dissing Fambrough is unforgivable. The sooner Gill is gone, the better.

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