View Full Version : WHITLOCK - Al Bohl deserves our thanks/takes a shot at King Carl

Hammock Parties
11-21-2007, 12:08 AM

Al Bohl deserves our thanks

I called Al Bohl on Tuesday to apologize.

The former Kansas athletic director I labeled an utter failure for creating the environment that caused Roy Williams’ departure was the same administrator wise enough to see greatness in Mark Mangino.

Shallow Al, despite his quirky, over-the-top personality, wasn’t nearly as shallow as Roy and I thought, especially when it comes to identifying football coaches.

The man who gave Kansas its biggest football gift also picked Pat Hill at Fresno State and Nick Saban and Gary Pinkel at Toledo.

Imagine that, Kansas City is on the cusp of its grandest football weekend — Armageddon at Arrowhead — and Al Bohl is the one man who can claim responsibility for the success of Missouri’s and Kansas’ head coaches.

I called Al Bohl to thank him.

I had no idea how he would respond. The last time we saw each other he was standing in his Lawrence driveway claiming that Roy Williams had crushed him like a dove, and the popular insinuation was Roy had crushed Bohl by enticing me to sit on Bohl with my column, radio show and ample rear end.

Al Bohl couldn’t have been nicer to me Tuesday. The woman who answered the phone announced that “Jason Whitlock is on the phone,” and Bohl quickly shouted a Ball State joke as he hurried to the phone.

“Are you upset because Gary and Nick killed Ball State when we were all at Toledo?” Bohl cracked.

“No,” I said. “I called to apologize and admit that you hired a great football coach. And I want to know how you did it, how you did it four straight times.”

Think about that. Bohl picked four straight winners, and he didn’t do it at a powerhouse. He did it at Toledo, Fresno State and Kansas. Maybe the Chiefs should consider replacing King Carl with Infallible Al. Peterson followed his hiring of Marty Schottenheimer by choosing coaches — Gunther Cunningham, Dick Vermeil and Herm Edwards — he knew professionally and personally.

“I never tried to hire someone because they’re a friend or because I knew them,” Bohl said, explaining his philosophy on picking a good coach. “You try to hire someone who matches up and is a good fit for the university and the situation.”

That’s what led Bohl to Mangino. Some people on the search committee that Bohl assembled at Kansas were really impressed with Pat Hill. But Bohl thought Hill wasn’t the right fit for Kansas.

“Mark had been under Bill Snyder and knew how to grow a program,” Bohl said. “Mark knew how to recruit to Kansas. Recruiting at Kansas is different from recruiting at Texas or Oklahoma. You have to have a great eye for talent. The quarterback they have now at Kansas fits the mold of exactly what I thought Mark would attract. You have to find a Doug Flutie, a great football player who might be undersized.”

Bohl, of course, is talking about KU’s record-setting quarterback Todd Reesing, a kid Mangino stole out of Texas because he was allegedly 2 inches too short to be a big-time quarterback.

Bohl said he settled on Mangino after several conversations with Ohio State coach Jim Tressel, who had hired Mangino as a grad assistant at Youngstown State years ago. Tressel raved about Mangino’s work ethic, honesty and organizational skills.

I asked Bohl why he was able to look beyond Mangino’s girth and judge him solely on his credentials.

“For the same reason people judge you as a writer,” Bohl responded.

He added: “I wasn’t looking for the guy who would look good on signing day, the guy who would look good in Hollywood. You want the guy who would look good two years from now as a football coach.”

Man, it’s six years later, and Mangino looks great as a football coach, and, even though I still miss Roy Willliams, I owe Al Bohl an apology. He played a major role in the making of Armageddon at Arrowhead.

11-21-2007, 12:12 AM
Wow... jwhit's been doing some soul searching.

11-21-2007, 12:13 AM
You've really gotta like the guy for writing this...

What ego?

Hammock Parties
11-21-2007, 12:14 AM
You've really gotta like the guy for writing this...

What ego?

This is all fun and games. Jwhit's always been like this.

11-21-2007, 12:21 AM
The good ole boy network. He's been talking about that for a long long time.

11-21-2007, 12:21 AM
You've really gotta like the guy for writing this...

What ego?
One out of every 10 articles he writes is decent.

this happens to be one of them.

But usually the other 9 are the same ol Carl bashing, pulling the race card out, or what not kind of articles. But hey it sells I guess.

Mr. BackseatModNuts
11-21-2007, 01:15 AM
Good read. Everything I hear negative about this guy he seems to debunk in articles.