There have been many odd stories surrounding the departures of head coaches from one school to another over the years. This one may go down as the most bizarre. And classless.
News of Tommy Tuberville agreeing to become the new head coach at Cincinnati first surfaced Dec. 8, with an introductory press conference later in the day offering official confirmation that he was leaving Texas Tech after three years. The night before news first surfaced that he was leaving the Red Raiders, though, it was business as usual for Tuberville.
Tuberville and members of his Tech coaching staff hosted recruits, including JUCO prospect Devonte Danzey, on a visit that included dinner at a local restaurant. During the dinner, and as he had with coaches such as Kansas’ Charlie Weis and West Virginia’s Dana Holgorsen, Danzey asked Tuberville how long he expected to be the coach of the Red Raiders.
Tuberville, according to Danzey, talked around the question without ever answering directly, even throwing in an out-of-nowhere reference to recruiting Ray Lewis. A short time later, Tuberville performed the coaching version of the dine-and-dash.
“The waitress brought our food out, and we thought (Tuberville) went to the bathroom, but he never came back to dinner,” Danzey told 247Sports.com. “Then next thing I know, the next day, he made an announcement that he’s going to Cincinnati.”
That’s right. Tuberville, again according to Danzey, ditched players he was recruiting in the middle of dinner, presumably to put the finishing touches on his departure from Lubbock to Cincinnati. To add insult to that insult, Tuberville bailed on a planned tour of campus the next morning, with the recruits only learning of Tuberville’s move to the Bearcats from a Tech assistant shortly after the tour had ended.
“Everybody was going crazy,” the offensive lineman told the website. “The players were shocked, too. We still had a good time at night, but it was crazy how he just got up and left out of nowhere and left people in the dark and in the shadow.”
It should be noted that this is merely one individual’s version of how events unfolded this past weekend. If true? Very classy move, Tubs, in a gutless kind of way.
Karma, though, can be a vindictive mistress, especially when it comes to the recruiting trail, where coaches who will recruit head-to-head with Tuberville and his new Bearcats staff are no doubt already licking their chops — regardless of if Danzey’s account is accurate or not.