The start of the Lovie Smith era at Illinois has not exactly gone smoothly. Illinois dropped to 1-4 this weekend with an overtime loss at home to Purdue, of all teams. Is the pressure getting to Lovie, or did a reporter simply ask a ridiculous question Monday during a regularly scheduled press availability?
Whatever the case, Smith did not take kindly to a question about how tough he is being with his team. The very concept of the question seemed to rub Smith the wrong way, as he pretty much challenged the reporter to ask the question again, as if Smith couldn’t believe he was just asked such a ridiculous thing.
“Are you freaking kidding me?” Smith said in resposne. “Have I been too lax with our football team? So I’m freaking going out there every day just letting them do what they want to do? Absolutely not. I’m not going to give that question an answer. Lax with a football team? Are you freaking lax with your job? I’m not either.”
Here is a video of the interaction, as provided by our friends over at CSN Chicago…
The irony about the question tossed Smith’s way though is Smith replaced a coach in Tim Beckman who was fired for being too tough on his players (and just being an all-around bad dude).