Here's a tip to all those beat reporters out there who spend their days following a college football team's every move: do NOT write emails to players on the team suggesting that they'd probably be better off quitting the team. Even if that team is New Mexico. This is something that Alboquerque Journal beat reporter Greg Archuleta recently had to learn the hard way.
There were rumors that New Mexico running back Demond Dennis had quit the team following a loss to UTEP in which the Lobos' leading rusher only had one carry. Head coach Mike Locksley said the reason behind it was that Dennis had to concentrate on his academics.
Archuleta, upon hearing the rumors of Dennis quitting the team, then sent the email that cost him his beat.
Archuleta followed the email to Dennis, which ended with "...that's why I'm trying to get a hold of you, to get your side of it. Let me know whether you can help, and I hope everything works out for you. If you have quit, maybe that's a step in the right direction."According to Archuleta's editor, Kent Walz, the suggestion that quitting the team might be the best thing for Dennis, whether he intended it that way or not, crossed the line and he reassigned him.
Archuleta, asked to give his interpretation of the email, told the Journal: "The context of my comment, 'If you have quit ...,' was never intended to suggest to Dennis that he should quit the team. Based on the information I received, it was reasonable for me to assume Dennis already had quit."
Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to send an email to Archuleta. I just want to let him know that while he may not have meant his email to sound the way it did, or lose his job, that this is probably a step in the right direction. Anything that relieves you of having to watch New Mexico's football team is a step in the right direction.
Though he'll probably miss watching videos of Mike Locksley arguing with student reporters.