National Columnist

Hate Mail: Refusing to back down -- from anybody


Updated Dec. 9

Every week, a reader threatens to beat me up. Every. Single. Week. I print some in Hate Mail. I'm predictable like that.

So this week, another threat came -- only, it wasn't written with the all-mouth, no-ass bravado of the typical idiot. It was written coldly. Confidently. It was written like the guy was a real fighter. He didn't identify himself beyond signing his name, but he did sign his full name. Which was different. So I looked him up, and what do you know?

It was written by a real fighter.

A cage fighter -- a champion cage fighter.

What follows is the actual e-mail exchange between King of the Cage welterweight champion Quinn Mulhern and, gulp, me.

From: Quinn

I noticed you brag about what a Billy badass you are. If you're willing to back up your tough talk, I'm willing to fight you for free. Your choice: Boxing, MMA, grappling, whatever. Any proceeds can go to a good cause. I'm sure there are lots of people who would love to see you triumph -- or watch you take a beating. Let me know what you think.

From: Me to Quinn

Looked you up. You're a 13-1 pro MMA fighter, and you wanna fight me? What is wrong with you?

Four minutes later, I wrote Quinn a second e-mail ...

From: Me to Quinn

That said, I just saw you fight on video. Your boxing doesn't scare me. I don't really know BJJ but I'll box you if it's convenient for both of us, since you live in New Mexico and I'm in Ohio. Anyway, you're bigger than me -- I'm 5-10, 160 -- but I'm not one to turn down a challenge. And like I said, you don't scare me as a boxer.

From: Quinn

Actually, I come up to JG's MMA in West Chester [Ohio] quite a bit to train with Jorge [Gurgel] and the gang. I can also make 160 pounds. Haha, but cool man, I was sure you'd back down, glad to see you have some balls. Lemme get in touch with my manager to see if we can put something together.

From: Me to Quinn

I don't back down from anybody. Anyway, I don't claim to be GOOD, but you'd love fighting me. I move forward until it's over, one way or another. Let me know when you're in town. One question: What set you off? What made you come after me?

From: Quinn

Well, nothing set ME off. It was actually a good buddy of mine who had read something of yours and for some reason it drove him up a wall. Something about college sports, I dunno, I only follow MMA and boxing. I just got off doing Bully Beatdown on MTV, so when my buddy brought you up ... Anyway, I'll let you know when my manager gets back to me. Either way you should keep training at JG's -- learn some grown-man martial arts.

From: Me to Quinn

I think I like you. Still, I'll happily punch you in the face. Or bleed on you. Makes no difference to me.

And with that, my reader friends, it ended. But who was the "good buddy" of his who tried to sic the champion cage fighter on me? Was it someone I've tormented on Twitter, someone like this guy? Just wondering. Back to Hate Mail ...

From: Jake

I followed you for a while when I was younger, but I recently read a column of yours, first time in a while, and think you really need to change the way you look at writing.

Why did you stop following me in the first place? That sets me off. I'm gonna send a good buddy of mine, Quinn Mulhern, to your place of business.

From: Leo Fonoimoana

Even the current players at Miami have said they didn't get proper coaching under Randy Shannon and former top UM players said he had to go. No player said it was wrong to fire Randy Shannon. I think you don't like African-Americans, and you want Miami to be mediocre -- so then keep Randy Shannon as head coach.

I criticized the firing of an African-American coach and that makes me racist? Against black folks? Maybe I've been punched one too many times in the face, but I don't follow.

From: Mike Daves

Hey where is the outrage over Colorado firing its (white) coach? Kids didn't get in any trouble there, either. Maybe you're a racist and didn't want Randy Shannon let go just because he is black.

Pretty sure I'm white myself, which in your scenario would make me guilty of self-loathing. That's absurd. I love me some me. Daily.

From: Rod

Least I remind you that coaches are paid to coach. Nick Saban and Urban Meyer are paid millions because of what they do ON THE FIELD. Mentoring kids is an ancillary responsibility. Randy Shannon didn't get it done on the field. You don't get paid for keeping your desk clean.

Which comes as a relief to the family of mice living behind my laptop.

From: Robert Hudson

So I guess Miami, a program with five national titles, should now accept mediocrity because Shannon is a good guy? Give me a break. The guy averaged seven wins a season -- that may cut it at whatever is your pathetic alma mater, but not at THE U.

Apparently, even with ample background material at your disposal, you're unaware that my pathetic alma mater has won two national titles since Donna Shalala drove your football program over the cliff. Your research skills need work, counselor. Yup, looked you up. You really did graduate from Miami, and you really are an attorney. But you must be a dumb one. Who took the LSAT for you?

From: Chad Holliman

LOL, Florida grad huh? Next time just save us all the time and write, "I hate Miami with every fiber of my being and will dog any move they make as long as I have the forum to do so." What a joke. You could mask your hatred just a touch better.

I don't hate Miami. I don't hate anyone. Well that's not true. But I don't hate Miami.

From: Richard

Oh my god no wonder you badmouth the Canes -- you are a Gator grad. No credibility with me, buster. Thanks!!!

Your relief is palpable. It must be nice to catalogue the world into neat little compartments. "He's a Miami grad, so I'll believe what he writes. He's a Florida grad, so I won't." People like you depress me, because you're simply not smart enough to procreate. Yet you do. Possibly with a relative, but you do.

From: Hank R. Bradley

Since when has anybody, and I mean anybody, at CBS had any credibility? Your network is falling behind in viewer numbers and ratings and you want to point out what you think are the failures of someone you obviously don't like. It's all about credibility and you and your network have none, absolutely none.

Look, I can't defend Hogan's Heroes, either. But it's been more than 30 years. Let it go.

From: Dr. Paul Cul

I am so tempted to call you by the names that truly describe your essence, but it's patently obvious to everyone who you really are -- a lonely, miserable, sick human being. I'll be praying for you, because only GOD can help you now.

When you pray to GOD about me, could you leave out the names that truly describe my essence, and also leave out that stuff about me being a lonely, miserable, sick human being? Wouldn't want you to tilt the playing field against me.

From: Dr. Paul Cul, again

Hey jerk, I just found out that you graduated from Florida, so that put your little rant about the Miami AD in a new light. You are a liar and a hypocrite, but of course you already know that. For you to pretend that you care about anything or anyone at the U is one of the most deceptive acts I've ever seen from a member of the media. Karma is a bitch though, and one day ...

Does this mean you're not praying for me anymore?

From: David Walton

Go easy on LeBron? Look bud, I was at the 2001 Jaguars-Browns game when the bottles were tossed. It was great seeing fans take action into their own hands. When fans have to pay $80 to see a team half-ass its job, then I believe they have the right to do whatever they want.

I'm positive there has been some intermingling in your family tree.

From: Joe

Why did you keep referring to Cleveland in the first person? You are from Hawaii, according to Wikipedia. Do not refer to Ohio as "our state." It is not your state. I agree with you, to a point. Do not go over the top, Cleveland, when LeBron returns -- I agree with you. Yet when you call Ohio "our state," you're wrong. It's NOT your state.

Not fair. I moved from Hawaii when I was 2 and haven't returned, so I have no memories of the only state I'm allowed to call my own. Shame of it is, I have a beach body now. I really ought to go back.

From: Jerry Carlson

You're such a lousy reporter. I'm not happy right now with Michigan or Rich Rodriguez, either, but I do know this: The Wolverines would have been a lot better if the asinine press had given the guy a chance. I'll have to remember your name so I don't waste more of my lifetime reading your crap.

That's the thing about fame, Jeffrey. You'll remember my name forever. I've already forgotten yours.

From: Gary Provencher

I read your column saying what a fraud Jeff Tedford is. I was wondering if you issued your apology yet? Cal's defensive line coach was suspended for the fake injuries. There is no evidence that Tedford knew what was happening.

So you believed Tedford when he suggested his staff member was acting autonomously? You're some kind of gullible, Gary. Hey ... did you know "gullible" isn't even a word? True story. It's not in the dictionary. If you don't believe me, check for yourself.

From: THE Brian in Pittsburgh

What happened to NiceGreggDoyel? NICE Gregg Doyel would never have tried to destroy a senior citizen on Twitter by picking a fight with Luther Campbell.

Yeah, that was weird. I called Luther Campbell an idiot on Twitter, and he came after me. So we went back and forth. I just hope he doesn't bust a cap in my ass.

From: J. Griffin

Are you still employed?

Last I checked. Surely CBS wouldn't pull the plug on me without having the decen--

Gregg Doyel is a columnist for He covered the ACC for the Charlotte Observer, the Marlins for the Miami Herald, and Brooksville (Fla.) Hernando for the Tampa Tribune. He was 4-0 (3 KO's!) as an amateur boxer, and volunteers for the ALS Association. Follow Gregg Doyel on Twitter.

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