There's a reason for the NFL draft. There are millions of dollars spent on evaluation, scouting, the combine etc.
What's the old saying? If you can play, the NFL will find you.
The NFL didn't find Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell. We're talking about a league that has put shoulder pads on everyone from former track stars to Australians to Sage Rosenfels. There are not many athletes who can play who the league misses. That's why Mike Leach looks dumb -- again.
Leach went a little nuts on Monday. Doyel went a little Leach on Tuesday wondering why Harrell didn't get drafted. Whatever. Now I'm here to tell you why Harrell isn't the only one who was "overlooked" (see below).
The Mouth That Bored (Leach, not Doyel) blasted the NFL, Texas A&M, the Cleveland Browns and anyone else who was close Monday for dissing his quarterback. The nation's leading passer was not drafted while Texas A&M back up Stephen McGee was taken by Dallas.
"I'm happy for Stephen McGee," Leach told the Dallas Morning News. "The Dallas Cowboys like him more than his coaches at A&M did."
"The truth of the matter is that the NFL drafts quarterbacks notoriously bad," Leach added, "That's indisputable."
That's interesting, Mike, since you just shot down your own argument. Had Harrell been drafted would that have made him part of the "notoriously bad" NFL drafting practices? For a coach whose program hasn't had much of a draft history, it's hard to take Leach seriously. Until receiver Michael Crabtree was taken in the first round on Saturday, Texas Tech hadn't had a player taken higher than the fourth round under Leach.
If the NFL doesn't know talent, then the NFL might make the argument that Mike Leach doesn't know how to produce talent. There are only four currently active players drafted from Texas Tech in the NFL since the 2003 draft, according to NFL.com. Four out of 11 drafted. None of them are quarterbacks. Oh, and did I mention that for the first time during his stay in Lubbock, Leach did not have a player drafted in 2008.
Yeah, sure, must be the NFL's fault.
This isn't the first time Leach has overshadowed his shotgun by shooting off his mouth. During the offseason he also ripped the NFL for downgrading Harrell for playing in the gun. Harrell will get his chance. He is going to camp with the Browns, the coach of which Leach also ripped for allegedly badmouthing Crabtree. So which is it, Mike? Is Eric Mangini brilliant for taking Harrell or not so much for criticizing your receiver?
Leach continues to do his players a disservice. Tell me one way that Texas Tech players are helped by their coach's rant. Leach already hides his stars from the media. I'm not going to say his restrictive media policies keep his players from getting drafted. I'll just go back to a quote from Wake Forest linebacker Stanley Arnoux that I used in Monday's story.
"He brought scouts in," Arnoux said of teammate Aaron Curry, the fourth-player taken. "When the NFL teams turned on film, all the rest of us guys flashed across the screen making some big plays, too."
Then I'll just sit back and let Leach make the case against himself.
"Michael Crabtree has been more successful as a receiver than that guy has as a coach," Leach said of Mangini.
"Michael isn't a diva. He's too shy to be like that. My definition of a diva is someone who's loud and self-absorbed. Michael is the furthest thing from loud that I've seen."
Loud and self-absorbed? Look in the mirror, coach.