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Following injury, Air Force RB must earn his jersey back

One of the basic principles most coaches will abide by in sports is a player will never lose a job due to injury. There are exceptions to that mantra, of course, but one has to wonder to what degree Air Force is taking it. Running back Devin Rushing, who missed the last 10 days of practice due to an ankle sprain suffered in a drill, says not only must he earn his starting job back, but also his jersey. His actual jersey.

“They took my jersey,” Rushing told The Gazette. “I talked to the equipment manager and he said my jersey is still in there with Rushing written on the back, but I’ve got to earn it back.”

That’s right. He must earn his actual jersey back. If you have a problem with that, Air Force head coach Troy Calhoun seems to think players who have a history of getting hurt may be better off finding some other activity to participate in.

“I think at every position we’re going to have tough, durable guys,” Calhoun said. “If you aren’t, you’re going to get us beat. I think the other thing is you have a built-in alibi if you’re a guy who gets hurt easily. If you’re a guy who gets hurt easily, you need to find another activity where there’s not contact involved.”

Injured players at Air Force reportedly wear red jerseys in practice and are isolated to watch the practice rather than kept close to the action, where they can hear what coaches are saying and see up close what is happening on the field. Calhoun says this is used to enhance the chemistry on the field more than anything else.

“They go to meetings,” Calhoun said. “I just think you either add to the chemistry or take from the chemistry. There’s no in between. If you’re a red jersey, I just don’t want anybody sucking the life out of everybody else who is working. Who is able to go out there even if they have an itch somewhere?”

“I think a warrior wants to be in battle, and we want warriors,” Calhoun explained.

This might not be the best way to change a potential image issue for Air Force’s football program.

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6 Responses to “Following injury, Air Force RB must earn his jersey back”
  1. trdiii says: Aug 20, 2014 6:25 PM

    Calhoun does realize that, rather than a cheap, over used football cliché, he does have actual future warriors on his team. Yet another bully football coach who feels the need to make his players “tougher.” Players in this case who passed on a normal college life and joined the military. Maybe coach should spend less time sending messages about injuries and more time sending messages not to rape anyone.

  2. tsimpson50 says: Aug 20, 2014 6:34 PM

    What an @ss. These kids are giving their all(for the most part) in class, on the field, and to their country. Pressuring someone to get back on the field before they are ready will lead to more problems. Does anyone else have a problem with this?

  3. cubano76 says: Aug 20, 2014 8:05 PM

    I’d like to see Calhoun do a 3rd of what he asks his players to do. See how tough he is. Oh, hey Coach please let me know what part if the world you will be shipped to, to defend our freedom when you’re dive coaching. #jackass

  4. titansbro says: Aug 20, 2014 8:15 PM

    Fire this a-hole immediately. These guys will give more to their country than this prick ever will. You don’t think they want to be on the field? Unacceptable comments from a service academy coach.

  5. cubano76 says: Aug 21, 2014 8:13 AM

    When I’m wrong, I’m wrong. Plain and simple, I spoke WAY too soon.

    “He began his coaching career at Air Force, where he worked as a graduate assistant from 1989-90. He started at quarterback for the Academy in 1986 and was one of only two freshmen to letter for the 1985 team.

    Calhoun served his country from 1989-95 as an active duty officer in the Air Force.”

    My apologies to Coach Calhoun.

  6. flips220 says: Aug 21, 2014 1:11 PM

    I can’t think of many better names for a running back than Rushing.

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