Angelique Chengelis talked with Desmond Howard at Sunday’s Brian Griese-Steve Hutchinson golf outing, and the former Heisman Trophy winner had many interesting things to say.
The first thing worth noting was what Desmond had to say about Kirk Herbstreit’s incorrect report that Les Miles was going to Michigan. Remember, the report came out the morning of the SEC title game, putting Miles in a tough situation as he had to deny those allegations. Here is Desmond’s opinion on the situation:
I was in Hawaii doing ESPN, so I had no knowledge of anything. I put the (earpiece) in my ear, and I’m hearing Herbstreit break this news, and I’m thinking, ‘You know, things happen overnight, maybe it did.’ He’s a seemingly intelligent guy, so if he’s going to say it, I don’t think he’s going to go out there and blurt it out. He must have believed what he said. Whether it was true or false, there’s no doubt in my mind that Herbstreit believed what he was saying on TV.
Now, should he have dug deeper, should ESPN have dug deeper? Of course. They have a Michigan guy on their crew and they knew how to get in contact with me, but no one ever called me.
The most interesting thing Desmond mentioned in this interview by far was what he had to say about Justin Boren. After hearing about Boren’s family values comments, Howard did rush to judgment a little bit. Thankfully, though, he had a talk with some Michigan players that told him more about what kind of person Boren was.
At first, I was like, ‘Wow, he’s talking about family values.’ And sometimes you use key words, and I read that, and I was like, ‘Damn, this thing is just blowing up.’ So I came up here (to Michigan) and I watched them practice. I was in the weight room working out, and two players started talking to me, and in general conversation they said, ‘This guy, Desmond, was a complainer. He complained about workouts, he complained about practices.’ And this is what they told me: ‘Really, we’re better without him.’ I said, ‘Wow, that’s a different side of the story I hadn’t even thought of.’ I knew they were training in a way they’ve never trained before.
So then he went to Ohio State, and I was like, ‘Well, how loyal can this guy be? All the colleges available to him, and he goes to Ohio State?’ I talked to Rich, and Rich told me he talked to him, and Rich said (Boren) never was really happy no matter what they did. And Rich said, ‘Desmond, I’ve got to do things my way.’
After beating the Les Miles drum for weeks and weeks after Rich Rodriguez was hired, it’s good to see that Desmond is starting to come around. I’m sure a lot of former players felt or still feel the same way about the coaching hire, but once they meet Coach Rod and get to know him, all should be well.