Frustrations/Conflictions Lead to Questionable Future
As half of the world has heard, Marquess Wilson was suspended after walking out of the Washington State Cougars’ intense conditioning session last Sunday. Many reported that Wilson quit the team after cleaning out his locker, but there has been little solidity in such statements.
What we do know is that Marquess Wilson has yet to attend practice since the incident, and he has been suspended for the UCLA game this Saturday.
My immediate reaction was supporting the move and siding with Mike Leach, and that is where I remain to stand.
After his first two seasons, Wilson was coming into his junior year as a focal point of the offense and an expected leader of the team. Wilson has shown no such leadership, and lost his starting role due to a lack of effort.
These are signs of a dwindling athlete who was clearly frustrated with the team’s performance, and he did little to improve it.
Leach constantly criticized Wilson on his lack of effort and intensity, and he was not afraid to bench the rising star. This obviously did not bode well with the school’s all-time receiving leader—darn it.
Athletic director Bill Moos claims to have met with Wilson about the incident. He reported his feelings on the situation, stating, “The discussion, after I gave him a big hug and told him I loved him, was about him and that he’s good but he’s not as good as he could be.” Moos later went on to say that Wilson was not showing signs of leadership and pointed out his performance at practices and how he was “coddled” early in his college career.
Moos then closed the statement with a classic line, “But like with everybody, you’ve got to play for the name in front of your jersey, not the name on the back of it.”
It is clear Moos has faith in Wilson, but he will not intervene with Leach’s decision.
You have to love this from your athletic director. He is confirming his decision to hire Leach and let him control the team. Unlike a Jerry Jones-type, who intervenes at every opportunity and diminishes the coach’s integrity.
Cougar fans everywhere are crossing their fingers that Leach will allow Wilson back on the team, but in order for this to happen, Wilson has to make the effort to come back. He has not shown any signs of apologetic notions, and it is unclear if he even wants to be back on the team.
There is most likely a lot going on in Wilson’s mind that we are unaware of, and we should not judge the kid because of that. We can only hope that he solves his issues and comes back to the program with a positive initiative to lead and work hard.
If Leach will allow him to, of course.