Missouri coach Gary Pinkel made some waves today during an ESPN interview with a comment directed squarely at Notre Dame.
Gary Pinkel said no independents in @CFBPlayoff. "Give Notre Dame year to join a league. They don’t have independents in NFL"— Brett McMurphy (@McMurphyESPN) July 20, 2015
Yes, Gary Pinkel, coach of the Missouri Tigers, has decreed Notre Dame can't make the College Football Playoff. Never mind the fact that Notre Dame is scheduled to play nine Power 5 schools this season, while Missouri plays eight (in fairness, they do also play BYU, which will count as a P5 school towards the SEC's requirement of its teams to play a P5 non-conference team starting in 2016). Never mind that Missouri will open its season with an FCS school, followed by Arkansas State, in 2015. That's fine. But being an independent? In this brave new world, that just isn't going to fly with Pinkel.
Carrying that line of thinking to its logical conclusion, Pinkel went on to make some other bold claims that, in our view, were far more inflammatory, but for whatever reason aren't being discussed nationally.
Pinkel on voting rights: "Why are we allowing people who live in Washington, DC to vote in elections? They're not one of the 50 states. Virginia or Maryland, boys and girls. We'll give you a year to pick one. Can't have independents here."
Pinkel on Russia: "We've been letting Russia get away with straddling the line between Europe and Asia for far too long. They get to have influence in way too many areas, politically, socially and economically. Time to divide Russia into a European sector and an Asian sector. I'm just trying to be fair, man."
Pinkel on Puerto Rico: "I don't think they should get to be in the World Baseball Classic as their own country unless they decide to be one. That's not fair to all those 'real' countries that don't get to hide behind the protection of the U.S. Crap or get off the pot time, dudes. Do you want to be a state or not?"
Pinkel on the state of Michigan: "My wife told me the other day she wants to go to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. I told her Peninsula is a city in Florida and that she's being ridiculous. But then she explained that they've got a whole other part of a state up there. How is that fair? The whole darn state is surrounded by lakes and you're telling me they just connected a bridge to the nearest landmass and called it theirs, too? No way, man. Give it to Wisconsin or become a foreign country."
Pinkel on cupcakes (real ones, not the schools Missouri plays each September): "We shouldn't allow bakeries to sell these things anymore. Are they a cake or are they a muffin? Right now they get to play it both ways. That's not fair to the other confections vying for their spot on the taste buds of our consumers. Pick a lane, fellas."
Pinkel on the media: "What is this I hear about the New York Times and Sports Illustrated having websites? You're telling me these guys get to make money from print publication and from the Internet? That's garbage, folks. No more Pulitzer Prizes until you pick a side. That's just my opinion."
Pinkel on TV: "My kid told me something called Netflix was nominated for a bunch of Emmys? And that it's not even a network? Now that's just the kind of thing I'm talking about. Netflix, or Yahoo, or whoever else is doing this, those guys aren't playing by the rules of TV. You get X amount of time to tell X amount of story before the commercial break. That's just the way we do it. You can't give Emmys to a website. What, the webmaster is going to come out of his mom's basement to accept the award? These guys are cheating. Get that stuff outta here."
Bold takes indeed from Pinkel. One can only wait and see what the fallout of this will be. Especially in Russia.