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I laughed my ass off at this article of The Pirate's former quarterbacks spilling the (Bucci) beans about their time with him.


First disclaimer: This is a story about Washington State coach Mike Leach.

Second disclaimer: While some of the details and anecdotes in this story might sound too strange to believe, the 10 former Washington State quarterbacks who spoke to The Athletic about Leach and his QB meetings insist that they are all true.

Austin Apodaca, 2012-13: It’s something you can’t really fabricate. All this stuff is true. You can ask any of us who have been in the room with him.

Connor Halliday, 2012-14: His first meeting, he had just gotten there and I was expecting him to install the offense. Everybody had their notebooks out ready to go. I think we got there at like 6 o’clock at night and were there until 9:30. He didn’t speak one word about football.

Jesse Brown, 2012-13: I had heard stories that he was this pirate guy when he first came, and he really wasn’t into pirates as much as I thought he was going to be. He wasn’t what I was expecting. But I don’t really know what I was expecting, either. I guess I didn’t expect him to be, uh, so weird.

Halliday: On his way in from Spokane, he almost got in a car crash. There was a snowstorm that day and a semi truck had rolled, and he was talking about how dangerous it is for semis to drive in the snow…I was already a huge Leach fan, so I knew a little bit about his formations and a few plays, so I wrote down a few things in my notebook. I was excited to get the meeting started. But the only thing I wrote down in big, bold letters was, “What the #$%@ is going on right now?”

Christian Jorgensen, 2015: I’ll never forget the first meeting. It was fall camp, and I remember we were slotted for a two or two-and-a-half-hour meeting. It ended up running like five-plus, and it was insane. I remember at that point being like, “OK, we’re in this …”

Apodaca: Every single day there was some shit that popped off that you were like, “What in the world?”

Casey Brink, 2016-18: It’s crazy.

Jorgensen: It was crazy.

Brink: Did you see our Christmas card photos we took as a quarterback group this year when we were holding Leach up? Other programs don’t have stuff like that. Nobody is having that much fun.


Brink: Everything with Leach at first glance is crazy, right? But then you’ve got to unpack it and be like, “OK, but is it that crazy?”

Brink: Our No. 1 rule was: Never say or ask or do anything that would get him talking about anything besides the film.

Apodaca: We would get pissed at people in the meeting room if they asked a question toward the end of the meeting. We would have these fall camp meetings that went until 9:30 at night and if there was a young freshman in there asking questions, we were all looking at him like, “Oh my God, dude, shut up because we will be in here for an hour and a half more on this subject alone. Stop asking questions, damn it.”

Brink: We’d have people sit in our meetings all the time, and it got to the point that our quarterbacks would say to the guys coming to the meeting, “Look, we’re glad to have you here. But don’t. Say. Anything. Because the second you do, that’s going to be the focus of this meeting, and then we’ll all be here all night.”

Tyler Bruggman, 2013: There was one time Connor, a veteran, made a rookie mistake. Sundays are typically long days, and we had finished the film from the game before. We were ready to head off to dinner. And then Connor made a rookie mistake and asked about the economy crash. I just remember Coach Leach putting the film clicker down and saying, “You know, it’s kind of a long answer, but it’s worth talking about.” So at that point, I knew we were going to be stuck in there for a while.

Jorgensen: There were definitely games going on within the quarterbacks. Leach would cycle through stories and then you’d get guys trying to trigger certain stories. They knew what to say in order to get him to go off on a tangent.

Brink: One of the great stories on that was early on my first year. Luke (Falk) was getting so perfect at his craft, and Luke loved making sure he got out to the practice field early enough to get his full warm-up in. So we would be in there waiting for Leach, and Luke would put on this serious face and be like, “I don’t care what you guys do, no matter what, nobody say shit, nobody ask anything, just let him come in and do his thing because I need to get on the practice field.” Classic Tyler Hilinski, he would wait until there would be maybe five or 10 minutes left in film and he would just be like, “So, Coach, what do you think about …”

Connor Neville, 2017-18: You could see Luke losing his shit in the corner. Just like, “Come on, I just want to get the #$%@ out of here.”

Brink: Luke would be staring daggers across the table, and Tyler would be covering his mouth because he would be cracking up.

Isaac Dotson, 2013: I was playing QB at the time, and we had our first position meeting, and 90 percent of the meeting had nothing to do with football. Maybe five plays into watching film, something happened that sparked a classic Mike Leach tangent. For at least an hour, he sat there rewinding and playing the same play over and over while he talked about everything from growing up in Wyoming to having a pet raccoon, getting paddled by the principal at his junior high, the origins of football and eventually just a full-blown Native American history lesson. The one-hour meeting lasted probably three hours. I remember looking at the veteran QBs in the room with a ‘what is happening right now?’ look on my face, but I could tell by their reactions that this was just a normal thing.

Brink: Sometimes they’re literally out of nowhere. We’ll be watching film and he’ll be like, “Throw it to this guy here. On this play, we could have checked to this play. And you know what? That reminds me …” And now we’re on some story that happened in Key West and some guy with one eye and a peg leg that he met at whatever bar.

Erik Anderson, 2014-16: My first year, I was really just a scout-team quarterback, and a lot of the stuff didn’t really pertain to me because we were watching film of other guys. I definitely found myself after a long day dozing off in those meetings. He’d go on some side story and you’d get lost in it.

Apodaca: I remember one story in particular. I can’t remember where he was at, but a neighborhood dog kept going up to him and barking at him or something when he was a small kid. To get this dog to stop barking, he apparently went up to it and peed around it or something so the dog wouldn’t bother him. Since that story, I was like, “This dude is another level of different.” He was just so happy to tell that story.

Bruggman: One of the quarterbacks at Texas Tech took notes on Leach’s stories, and he would quote Leach but he wouldn’t say the F word and he wouldn’t write the F word. He left his notebook behind one day and somehow Leach got a hold of it and was looking at it, so the next day in the meeting he said, “I want you to get up on the board and write the word ‘#$%@.’”

Jeff Tuel, 2012: We’d watch a play and he’d go, “Good.” Next play. “Good ball.” Next play. “What did you see here?” “I saw leverage on outside ‘backer.” He’d take the laser pointer and circle an empty plot of green grass. “Throw it over here next time.” Next play. It was always just like, “Wherever people aren’t, throw it there.” Or, “He’s open. You should have thrown it over there.”

Neville: It was fall camp my second year and someone threw a pick. He was like, “Don’t throw the ball to the other team. That’s the last thing you want to do is throw the ball to the other team.”

Jorgensen: We didn’t really have playbooks.

Brink: Any high school, any junior college, no matter where you were, your playbook gets simpler when you get to Washington State.

Tuel: Literally as simple as humanly possible.

Apodaca: I remember I threw a pick or something, and I remember asking him what coverage that play is good against. And he goes, “Well, you should have just thrown it to this fucking guy because he’s standing there wide-ass open.”

Halliday: I said to Leach, “What do I need to do to get the ball there on time?” He was like, “Well, just throw it to the guy who’s fucking open.” I was like, “Yeah, no, I get that dude, but what do you want me to do to get there quicker?” And he was like, “I don’t give a shit what you do. Just throw it to the guy who’s fucking open.”

Tuel: You expect someone with that reputation, with that many successful quarterbacks under his umbrella, to have some secret sauce or special way of calling plays or reading defenses or just some scheme that’s better than everyone’s…He just found a way to make it as simple as he can.

Brink: Every week we’d look at what the defense was going to do inside the red zone. So every week coach Leach would lean back and be like, “All right, guys. When we’re down in the red zone, they’re going to do one of two things. They’ll be in man or they’ll be in zone.” Early on, you look around at the other quarterbacks like, “Are you serious? That’s what I came to play college football to learn?”

Anderson: Say you’re warming up and throwing routes to a receiver and you ground one about five yards in front of the guy. He would go, “Hey, you’re throwing that shit off your back foot, you’ve got to get your dick into it. Point your dick at him.”

Brink: Each year I would take my notebook in. We’d have the install day at the beginning of the year, so I would write down all our notes: what we’re changing, here’s our playbook. We usually cover that in the first three days. … And then by the start of the season, I honestly don’t think I would ever bring a notebook. We know the offense, we know what we’re doing, and all Leach is going to tell you is, “You threw it here, you should have thrown it here.” And it’s true!

Tuel: This guy’s the guru. He is the Air Raid. I remember at BYU our first game, we’re watching the film the next day and he says, “How many plays did you change?” I said, “Probably two or three.” He’s like, “What do you mean two or three?” I said, “I called the play, and I ran the play. That’s kind of how it’s worked for me here.” He’s like, “Well, when Graham (Harrell) was playing, those guys were checking seven out of 10 plays. I was like, “Well, you never fucking told me that!” He’s like, “Well, you’re the one who sees it. I’m just giving you a suggestion.” I’m like, “Fucking A, good to know.” There are some things you just have to figure out going through it with him.

Halliday: By the end of my junior year and all through my senior year, I was probably calling 70 percent of the plays. He would give me a formation and then I would call the play. His coaching philosophy is, you’re out there on the field, you can see the way the defense is lined up better than I can. So it’s my job to get you to the best point of believing in yourself and believing in your ability to call the plays. That’s the way he coaches. He does it in a roundabout way sometimes, but it’s his philosophy to get the quarterback to run the entire show.

Tuel: I think the most entertaining thing during my time at Washington State was watching coach Leach teach a three-step and five-step drop. That was some of the better stuff I’ve seen on that field. I mean, what do you think it looks like? Picture in your head what Mike Leach doing a three-step or five-step drop looks like, and that’s exactly what it looks like. Just the exact opposite of graceful.

Brink: I swear we had more fun this season than any team in America. And part of that is the simplicity. You know exactly what you’re doing so you can just go out and play football. And who doesn’t love that?

Halliday: Our film sessions kind of became more of a hang-out situation. He had this Cuban coffee maker that he called Bucci. It’s really, really, really strong Cuban espresso. I don’t know why, but he called it Bucci.

Apodaca: Dude, I was like the Bucci slave my redshirt year. The Bucci was huge.

Tuel: He had a Bucci guy when I was there. Certainly.

Apodaca: I had to learn how to make the Bucci. I didn’t know how to do it, so I’m up there asking questions, nervous and shit, like, “What the hell? I don’t know how to make this shit.” I finally learned how to do it. Once I learned how to do it, Leach was like, “Oh, man, Apodaca, you make a real mean Bucci.” From then on, I had to go up and make the Bucci for him every single day before meetings. I was like, “Dude, if it gets me out of some crazy ass story, I’m going to go make this shit.”

Neville: Our coaches would make coffee, and he would get into the meeting, drink it and be like, “What the #$%@ is this shit? This is horseshit.” He’d tell Drew (Hollingshead), he’d be like, “Drew, go make me another cup of coffee with some real shit.”

Halliday: We would drink our coffee, dip our tobacco and basically just tell stories for three hours.

Apodaca: You come up there with your notebook, which you’re probably not going to write much in. He’s not saying, “Hey, write this down.”

Anderson: Not at all.

Apodaca: We’re literally watching film like you would watch a YouTube video. We’re watching through it and if there’s something that pops out, he’ll go back. I kid you not, sometimes he would be pressing the rewind button for freaking 14 minutes talking about the Cody, Wyo., rodeo or some shit like that and you’re just like, “What is going on in here?” The same thing would be playing back and forth because he would just rewind, let it play, rewind, let it play. We wouldn’t even be watching it. We’d just be talking about Native Americans or his surfing lessons in California.

Anderson: One keyword can set him off.

Apodaca: Meanwhile, everyone has a big dip in, we’re drinking the most expensive espresso that you can find. I mean, this stuff is damn near a Monster Energy drink because it’s so strong.

Tuel: Connor had to sit out of a passing drill one time because he was so jittery or something. He was so juiced up on that stuff.

Apodaca: Yeah, man. That’s a normal meeting.

Jorgensen: He would chew, and he was really proud of the fact that he could quit anytime he wanted. His technique was to start chewing the wintergreen flavor because he said it was so gross it would make him not want to chew.

Anderson: Connor Halladay was a big chewer as well, and Leach would constantly be bumming dips off Connor, which was just hilarious.

Neville: I remember during fall camp last year he had a pretty big dip in. During fall camp that man puts like half a can in his mouth. It’s insane. But anyways, he was so concentrated on the film that he had his coffee in one cup and his spitter in the other way. He spat in his coffee with his dip in his mouth, took his dip out and then drank his coffee. He spit in it like two or three times and didn’t even know it. Me and Casey were like, “What the #$%@ did he just do?”

Anderson: He had a can on him and he had a real small dip left. He looks at me and goes, “You know, Anderson, I try not to get anyone started on this stuff. But if I’m being completely honest with you, I’ve got a perfect starting dip for you if you want to give it a try.” That’s what got me started on chewing.

Jorgensen: We would go into the meeting, he would push pause and continue talking about a play or concept, and then he would pull out his can. He’d snap it a few times and pack his lower lip and he would get more muffled. You’re still trying to follow what he’s saying, but it’s a little more difficult to understand him. And then he would pack in another pinch into his top lip. They call it the upper-decker or double-decker or something. So he’d have two going at once, and he’d be really muffled so you’re trying to understand what he’s saying and you have to pay extra close attention.

Brink: We had our position meeting at 2 o’clock, so we had to all be in there by 2 o’clock. The thing is, during my three seasons, I think he was on time maybe once or twice.

Anderson: He was usually fashionably late for whatever reason.

Brink: And then 15 or 20 minutes in, Coach Leach would walk in, but he would have his ear buds in and he’d be talking on the phone to someone. That’s another thing about him: He’ll pick up the phone for anyone, and no matter who you are, he’ll talk with you.

Jorgensen: He’d stop the meeting and take a half-hour phone call to talk to some ESPN Radio show. I know he talked to Donald Trump on the phone one time. He wouldn’t say anything. He’d just grab his phone and just take it for half an hour.

Brink: So he’d be on the phone for another five or 10 minutes and then he’d say, “Hey, I’ve gotta go. I’ve got a meeting to run here.” Now it’s 2:25 and we’ve started. If he was talking about something especially interesting on that phone call, then we’d start the meeting with a story. At that point, all bets were off. You didn’t know when you were going to get to film. You might not.

Jorgensen: When Leach showed up, that’s when practice started.

Brink: He’d walk out 10 minutes late and everyone would be like, “Yeah! Here we go!” Guys would line up sometimes, and everyone would put their hands up like the human tunnel thing for Leach. Leach would run through all the guys reaching up and touching their arms. We’d all be cheering and going crazy.

Brink: Every time he would start telling a story, he wouldn’t pause the film and set down the remote in order to tell the story. He’d be talking, telling the story, and he’d let whatever play is on run until it’s about to finish and then he’d rewind it to the start. Then let it run and rewind it to the start.

Neville: Oh. My. God.

Brown: He would tell a story and just rewind it just for something to do in the middle of the story.

Brink: There would be times one of our guys threw a pick or a bad ball, like it was one of his only bad plays in practice. And now he’s got to sit there and watch it for 20 minutes while he’s sitting there listening to one of these stories.

Neville: My freshman year, he put me in the bullring with (defensive back) Skyler Thomas, and I pancaked him. He would never stop asking me, “All right, Neville. You and Thomas, fight to the death. Who wins?”

Brink: We’d be watching film and out of nowhere, just completely out of left field, Leach would use his laser point and he’ll point to two of our players and he’ll be like, “All right, in a fight to the death here, who do you got?”

Neville: He would just say stuff like that because he thought it was funny.

Brink: And sometimes it would escalate into a debate for the next five minutes.

Apodaca: Leach doesn’t change, and he’s not going to change for people.

Brink: Leach will be Leach daily. That’s another thing I love and respect about him. He’s the same guy every day. There’s something to be said for that.

Anderson: I would go back and sit in a meeting again just to enjoy it.


Also, another reason it is good that I don't have kids, because I would have to do this...


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1 hour ago, Rothbardian said:

Katy vs. North Shore tonight @ 7

Do you have a personal stake in this match up?

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15 minutes ago, PurpleDawg said:

Do you have a personal stake in this match up?


No, went to Clear Lake...

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Re-watching US vs GA with Gary in the Coaches Room...he brings up Reagor at the 1:37:15 mark



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The man of the hour had a sheepish grin on his youthful face, because he knew his offense had just stoked the fires of Cowboys fans across the globe. He was asked how it felt to have Jones so excited about his play-calling debut.


“Well, he got my name right,” Moore said, laughing. “He used to call me Keelan. It must mean we’re doing something right.”


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What does "Iowa" usually mean when a QB yells it out at the line before the snap?

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7 minutes ago, PurpleDawg said:

What does "Iowa" usually mean when a QB yells it out at the line before the snap?


It could mean anything or nothing at all. 

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16 minutes ago, frogtwang said:


It could mean anything or nothing at all. 

I heard it yesterday in one of the college games and I heard Prescott yell it just a while ago in the Cowboys/Redskins game. I think it means something specific, like "inside" maybe?

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8 minutes ago, PurpleDawg said:

I heard it yesterday in one of the college games and I heard Prescott yell it just a while ago in the Cowboys/Redskins game. I think it means something specific, like "inside" maybe?


What it means will depend on the team. It’s not going to be something universal because that would signal the defense on what to expect.


Like with signals in baseball, the signs/words may be the same, but the meaning of those signals/words are going to differ from team to team.

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23 minutes ago, frogtwang said:

What it means will depend on the team. It’s not going to be something universal because that would signal the defense on what to expect.

Well, from that video you posted it sounds like everybody knows what a few words mean. They ought to put "Omaha" on Peyton's tombstone. :)

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