clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Eric Dickerson Says Southern Methodist Football Should Just Go Away

New, 5 comments

One of the greatest players in program history, Eric Dickerson didn't mince words about his alma mater on Tuesday. But is he right about the state of the SMU program?

USA TODAY Sports

Five years ago, on a blustery November day in Memphis, I watched  Tommy West stand at the podium moments after his dismissal as head football coach of the University of Memphis.

As West spoke, he mentioned that his dismissal, the seventh straight for the program since the 1980's, was a prime example of history repeating itself.

"You gotta give the next coach an equal stick to fight," remarked West in the presser, "Give him that!!!!!"

Towards the end of the presser, West, who is currently on Rick Stockstill's at Middle Tennessee, said if you can't put any effort into fixing the program, do away with it.

Meaning that, if you're going to try to compete with the big boys in college football, or in this case, other programs in your league, the school's adminstration as well as the community at large has to make a commitment to building a successful football program that the community can be proud of.

If you don't want to put forth the effort to have a total commitment to football, the best thing for you as a school is to get out of the football business.

Earlier this week, in the wake of the June Jones resignation, former SMU running back Eric Dickerson held nothing back on a Dallas radio show when he discussed the state of the Mustang football program.

In a tone similar to what West had five years ago when he exited the Memphis football program, Dickerson talked about everything from the lack of support Jones was getting from the school at large to the tired excuse that players from his era wasn't welcomed back at the Hilltop. And while there may or may not be truth to some of what was said during the interview, here's some things I think I do know regarding the state of the SMU program.

As opposed to what Curtis Johnson is doing at Tulane, connecting the program with the city of New Orleans, June Jones never could connect the city of Dallas with the Southern Methodist program in the recruiting world, which is troubling because recruiting kids to a place like Dallas isn't like recruiting a kid to a place like Murfreesboro, Tennessee or Starkville, Mississippi.

More importantly, in a state like Texas, having under 75 players from the state on your roster is unacceptable (SMU has 68 players on its roster from the state).


-Tweet from North Texas coach Dan McCarney Wednesday morning

Dickerson during the interview forgot to mention the fact that June Jones, a guy that he pushed for the job at SMU, received a contract extension in December of 2013, after the Mustangs went 5-7 last season, throwing out the narrative that June Jones had no support from the upper brass in Dallas.

Or the fact that the Mustangs last Saturday in Denton basically quit on Jones with their 43-6 loss to North Texas, days after getting manhandled by Baylor in Waco.

I don't have an issue with Dickerson being passionate about his alma mater or the fact that he questioned his school's commitment to football.

What I do have an issue with is the fact that instead of looking at the big picture, Dickerson tried to portray June Jones as the victim.

If June Jones had the same energy he had in Hawaii, I don't think we'd be writing about his resignation today.

We'd be writing about something else.