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The time has come for Coachlympics

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Let Ronnie Lott score you on rings!

Jim Harbaugh can do a cartwheel!

(Also Michigan got a pretty good linebacker, though you should seek out those with better expertise than I have if that’s the angle you want to explore.)

While it’s nice that Harbaugh, defensive coordinator Don Brown, and linebackers coach Brian Jean-Mary all showed off their gymnastic skill to celebrate a recruiting success, there’s a better use of those talents: Coachlympics.

Consider the number of OIympic events that can be completed individually. Track and field, swimming, diving, cycling, dressage, archery, kayaking – it wouldn’t be hard to come up with a dozen events that, with some modification, can be done without teammates or opponents. Now remember that most colleges have the facilities to hold most of those events. We don’t need to go searching for an Olympic-length pool or a bunch of hurdles, and there’s probably some stuff in the quad we can have a horse jump over.

These coaches are stuck at home driving their families crazy. Why not give them a competitive outlet? Here’s how I see it working:

  • Any school that wants to participate has to send its head coach. Yes, your strength coach can throw a shot put a hundred feet. Your defensive backs coach used to run the 200 and is in great shape. They are welcome to offer advice remotely, but we want to see the big money fellas out there going for the gold.
  • Coaches don’t have to participate in every event. Knowing your strengths and weakness is a key component of self-actualization, so if Dan Mullen just wants to racewalk in dress shoes, that’s allowed.
  • For time-based events, like sprints or swimming, we’re not going to worry about syncing everyone up. Coaches will get a time slot, run their race or whatever live, and their result will go on the leaderboard. Will there be whining about different conditions? No, because we’ll remind them that excuse doesn’t fly in football.
  • For scored events, we’ll make sure the competitors all go in a set order and set up a panel of remote judges. Those judges will come from the College Football Playoff Selection Committee (subject to the usual recusal requirements) because they’re not busy either.
  • We will be handing out two kinds of awards. First, individual events will get the standard gold/silver/bronze medals. In place of the winner’s national anthem, we will play that school’s fight song, and when sports resume in person, coaches will be encouraged to wear their medals everywhere. Second, we’ll also award one overall set of medals for the best coaches across all the events, scored similarly to the decathlon. You know that Directors’ Cup that Stanford wins every year? This is that, but with a higher possibility that you see Jimbo Fisher painfully belly-flop off the 10 meter diving platform.

All of this goes on television, of course, and I expect the networks/sponsors will pay handsomely for the privilege. That’s good for the cash-strapped schools, who can hopefully stop cutting other sports. We don’t even need the coaches to be good! Tom Brady spent most of a charity golf match looking like a jackass and audiences were delighted. You’re telling me Iowa fans wouldn’t shell out money to see Scott Frost eat it on the pole vault?

And if coaches start refusing to participate, well, go back to the video that launched this idea. You can bow out if you want. But the recruits aren’t gonna like that one bit.