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Report: Grambling football players walk out of meeting, skip practice

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Things are not all bright and peachy for the Grambling football program. The program has lost 17 straight games and fired head coach Doug Williams in September. Frustrations apparently boiled over among the players this week, feeling disrespected by the administration and walking out of an administrative meeting on Tuesday and skipping a team practice on Wednesday.

Former Super Bowl MVP quarterback for the Washington Redskins, Doug Williams, was fired as the head coach of the Tigers in September following the second game of the season. He was replaced by running backs coach George Ragsdale, but it appears as though the team had already been lost.

According to a report by Shreveport Times, Grambling football players met with Grambling’s president Frank Progue, athletic director Aaron James, Ragsdale and the president of the student government on Tuesday to address recent hassles concerning team travel and other issues, such as the firing of Williams last month. Per the report, players became increasingly frustrated with the conversations during the meeting and walked out. Although there is conflicting information on how many players walked out of the meeting, it is reported without much conflict that none of the players showed up for practice on Wednesday.

Among the concerns of the players seems to be the university not providing meals for the team, bussing the team long distances rather than flying, and a lack of trust on the staff. As Shreveport Times notes, assistant coaches were previously informed they would have their jobs through December following the dismissal of Williams, but one assistant coach has since been fired.

Grambling is one of the most successful HBCU programs in the country, having won five black college football national championships since 2000 and six SWAC titles in that time span. Former head coach Eddie Robinson is a legend in the college football universe and the recognized record holder for most coaching victories, with 408*. Seeing just how bad things have gotten for the program since winning the SWAC title in 2011 is somewhat amazing.

This sounds like a big mess for the Grambling program, and that is a shame to see. How long it will take the right leadership to turn things around for the program remains to be seen, but if any of these concerns are legitimate, it will take a real determined coach to begin taking on the job as head coach at Grambling.

* Penn State’s Joe Paterno won 409 games but was stripped of the official NCAA record following sanctions against the program that stripped the school of over 100 wins.

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9 Responses to “Report: Grambling football players walk out of meeting, skip practice”
  1. v2the4 says: Oct 16, 2013 9:22 PM

    thats awesome for the players…stand up to the admin, but if you really want to walk out on them, save it for the bayou classic, where they make their most money

  2. jxegh says: Oct 16, 2013 9:24 PM

    Do you really need to mention Joe “look the other way” Paterno in this aritcle?

  3. ftball101 says: Oct 17, 2013 8:17 AM

    Eddie Robinson is the record holder. No asterisk about it.

  4. dcviking says: Oct 17, 2013 8:53 AM

    John Gagliardi won 489 games — Joe or Eddie aren’t in the discussion.

  5. mogogo1 says: Oct 17, 2013 10:50 AM

    I have to side with the players regarding the bus trip to Indianapolis when the Alcorn State team flew. That’s a 750 mile drive that takes over 11 hours. If Grambling wasn’t willing to fly them to the game, then they should have declined to participate in the Circle City Classic, which is the reason two deep south schools ended up playing in Indiana.

  6. dhardy8207 says: Oct 17, 2013 11:15 AM

    The driving instead of flying thing they (the administration) may be able to explain, but the meals thing is a bit worrisome. How can anyone expect players to handle the physical demands of the game without eating?…

    Something similar happened with my son while playing basketball on scholarship. They lost to an opponent on a road game, and the coach made the bus driver take them back to campus over a four hour bus ride, after playing a night game and he refused to stop for food because they lost. Needless to say he, I, several other parents and the Dean had a not so nice chat afterwards and he was reprimanded. These sporting events bring in much revenue and withholding necessities such as food is almost like slavery…

  7. tigersfandan says: Oct 17, 2013 11:40 AM

    Maybe this can serve as a warning for the next school thinking about canning their after two games. Seriously, two games?!

  8. buffobeel42 says: Oct 17, 2013 12:54 PM

    Two Words-Turner Gill

  9. melikefootball says: Oct 20, 2013 1:16 PM

    Second class players on a second class team crying foul, how bout getting an education instead of crying about dirty uniforms.

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