Mike Leach did a great job at Little Rock Touchdown Club in 2010!!! One of our best speakers ever!!!



-Mike Leach did a great job at Little Rock Touchdown Club in 2010!!! One of our best speakers ever!!!

Leach talking, lawsuit pending

By: Jeff Halpern
Published: Tuesday, August 31, 2010

 Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach is shown during Big 12 Media Day in Irving, Texas, Wednesday.

(AP / Donna McWilliam )
Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach is shown during Big 12 Media Day in Irving, Texas, Wednesday.

— Eight months after being fired as Texas Tech football coach, Mike Leach said he believes the Texas Tech administration used the controversy surrounding Adam James as a reason to dismiss him.

Leach, the Little Rock Touchdown Club’s guest speaker Monday at the Embassy Suites hotel, was fired Dec. 30, three days before the Alamo Bowl against Michigan State and one day before Texas Tech was supposed to pay him $2.5 million. Leach was given a five-year contract worth $12.7 million in March 2009 after several months of negotiating, which also saw him interview for the job at Washington.

Leach has filed a civil suit against Texas Tech in Lubbock’s 99th District Court. Oral arguments are scheduled to begin Oct. 7.

“The thing is the administration was dissatisfied with the way the contract negotiation went and they wanted to find a way of getting out of paying me what they owed me,” Leach said. “I’ve sat down with my lawyer and seen some memos passed back and forth which showed me they did not want to live up to their end of the deal.

“Right now, we want to get this thing to trial as soon as possible, and they want to drag this thing out.”

James, the son of ESPN college football analyst Craig James, suffered a concussion and claimed he was forced to stand inside a darkened shed next to the Texas Tech practice field, which touched off a firestorm, ultimately resulting in Leach’s firing.

Texas Tech was 8-4 in 2009 with a 5-3 conference record before the James controversy hit.

“The first thing is Craig James was dissatisfied with his son’s playing time, and when he didn’t like the answer we had given him, he went straight to the administration,” Leach said. “When Craig James was at SMU, he got preferential treatment [referring to the fact that SMU was placed on probation when James was a player there from 1979-1982] and he felt his son Adam was entitled to the same thing. The whole thing was absurd.”

Leach compiled an 84-43 record in 10 years as the Red Raiders coach, going 11-2 in 2008. Texas Tech shared the Big 12 South Division title that season with Oklahoma and Texas, and Leach won Big 12 Coach of the Year honors.

Leach, now an analyst for CBS College Sports, said he wants to get back into coaching, even with the lawsuit pending against Texas Tech.

“It has to be the right place,” Leach said. “I want to go to some place where they value me as an individual and appreciate the fact that my teams win and my players graduate and not have to deal with people with separate agendas. The lawsuit doesn’t change anything for me.”

Since getting fired from Texas Tech, Leach has moved to Key West, Fla., and has kept busy, visiting movie producer Peter Berg, actor Matthew McConaughey and the training camps of the New York Jets, Giants and Philadelphia Eagles. In addition, he’s working on a book with Bruce Feldman of ESPN, and it is scheduled to be released in January.

Sports, Pages 15 on 08/31/2010


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Video: Barbara and Vince Dooley appear at Macon Touchdown Club

I have written about my past visits to the Little Rock Touchdown Club many times and I have been amazed at the quality of the speakers. Frank Broyles was one of my favorites but Phillip Fulmer, Paul Finebaum, Mike Slive, Willie Roaf, Randy White, Howard Schnellenberger, John Robinson, Mark May, Gene Stallings, Bobby Bowden, Lloyd Carr, Johnny Majors, Pat Summerall, Pat Dye, Vince Dooley , Eric Mangino, and many more.

My favorites were Phillip Fulmer, Howard Schnellenberger, John Robinson, Gene Stallings, Bobby Bowden, Lloyd Carr, Johnny Majors, Pat Summerall, Pat Dye, and Vince Dooley .

Here is an article on Vince Dooley when he spoke from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette:

LITTLE ROCKVince Dooley stepped down as athletic director at Georgia in 2004 and as head coach in 1988, but he still keeps close tabs on the Bulldogs football program.
Dooley was in Samford Stadium on Saturday in Athens, Ga., where he watched the Arkansas Razorbacks pull out a last-second 31-24 victory over theBulldogs.
“The score was 24-10 Arkansas and then Georgia dominated the fourth quarter for 14 minutes,” Dooley said Monday at the Little Rock Touchdown Club luncheon at the Embassy Suites hotel. “Georgia scored two touchdowns and had the ball at midfield and then a guy [Jake Bequette] comes off the corner and knocks the hell out of the quarterback.
“[Ryan] Mallett comes back and flicks two throws with his wrist and then gets his body into that last one and it’s all over.”
Mallett’s 40-yard touchdown pass to Greg Childs with 15 seconds left secured the victory and moved the Hogs to 3-0 and No. 10 in The Associated Press rankings, setting up a showdown with No. 1 Alabama on Saturday in Fayetteville.
“I know when two Georgia fans talk to one another, the first thing they say, is ‘How ’bout them Dogs.’ Well today, it’s ‘How ’bout them Hogs.’
“Today, I’m glad not to be in Athens and glad I’m not in coaching.”
With the Bulldogs off to a 1-2 start and 0-2 in the SEC for the first time since 1993, Dooley said he feels for Coach Mark Richt, whom he hired in December 2000. Richt has come under criticism after an 8-5 season a year ago, his worst in his nine years in Athens.
“It’s just the nature of the beast,” Dooley said. “He’s a victim of his own success,and it’s hard for people to tolerate when the team is not winning. The difference is the number of people who don’t tolerate is twice as high.”
While the Hogs are a 7 1 /2-point underdog against defending national champion Alabama, Dooley, who won a national championship in 1980, knows a few key plays can mean the difference between winning and losing.
In 1980, Georgia defeated Florida 26-21 on a 93-yard touchdown pass from Buck Belue to Lindsay Scott with 1:04 to play.
“If you win a national championship, you need those type of plays to happen,” Dooley said. “Look at Tennessee in 1998 against Arkansas. If they don’t get that fumble, they don’t win it all.”
While Dooley was in the stadium Saturday, he will not be in Samford Stadium on Oct. 9 when Tennessee, coached by his son Derek Dooley, comes to town.
“I will pull for him, but I’m not going to go inside Samford Stadium and pull against Georgia, and besides, they usually have those high tech cameras, which can spot you, and I don’t want that to happen,” Dooley said.
“My wife [Barbara] will be in the stadium, but I’ve told her she’s not allowed to wear that ugly orange until she crosses the state line and I won’t wear that ugly orange either.”
With the Volunteers off to a 1-2 start after a 31-17 loss to Florida, Dooley was asked by the audience if he had any advice for his son and he said, “Hang on.”
“He has a tough job,” Dooley said. “They went through a couple of years where they didn’t recruit anybody and then they hired that one guy [Lane Kiffin] from the West Coast who should have stayed on the West Coast.”
Dooley said he tried to talk his son out of going into coaching after spending one year as a lawyer in Atlanta, but lost that debate. He said when Derek was at LSU, he lost the debate with his mother when he tried to get her to root for LSU when the Tigers played Georgia.
“She told him the credit card is thicker than blood,” Dooley said.

Here is an article on the speakers for 2013 from Sporting Life Arkansas website:

Little Rock Touchdown Club Announces 10th Anniversary Lineup


Little Rock Touchdown Club Speakers 2013

LITTLE ROCK – The Little Rock Touchdown Club kicked off the 2013 season and announced the club’s line-up of renowned speakers and the state’s finest in football.

The Northwest Arkansas Touchdown Club also released its slate of speaker for 2013.

  • Bret Bielema – Aug. 28
  • Jeff Long – Sept. 4
  • Former Oklahoma St. coach Pat Jones – Sept. 18
  • Lou Holtz – Sept. 23
  • Fitz Hill – Oct. 2
  • CBS College Football Columnist – Bruce Feldman – Oct. 16
  • ESPNU Lead Host – Dari Nowkhah – Oct. 23
  • ESPN.com SEC Writer – Chris Low – Oct. 30

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