Just two years removed from a 7-5 season where Rice was willing to pay then coach Todd Graham over $700k a year - what is the going rate for Bailiff's 9-3?
Surely we aren't so jaded from being jilted by the previous coach that we stubbornly cut out our own heart this time.
I give TG credit for bringing change to Main Street , but he also deserves credit for a tyrannical leadership style that ran his players into the ground and left them with little in the tank. They played on guts with bodies that were beat into submission - then he took the money and ran.
Rice was used, abused, and held out to public scrutiny as a place that was unwilling to pay for success.
Does TG get the last laugh? He promulgated this lie. N-O-W it's time to tell if his lies took root. Did he leave us untrusting and jaded or did he just leave us? I hope it's the latter.
Bailiff signed on for what is recognized as chump change in his occupation. Hard to say $400k is chump change, but in today's coaching landscape it is pennies - by comparison fellow C-USA and SMU Coach June Jones made $2 Million dollars this year. I don't criticize doctors for making millions or attorneys for accumulating wealth. They went to school, served their internship, and paid the price. Bailiff has done the same.
He inherited a team with damaged minds, spirits, and bodies. He had to surgically implant a heart in his team and then nurse them back to health. It took time and in retrospect few of us knew the extent of the damage until N-O-W.
David Bailiff understands Rice and has embraced the school. He doesn't shy away from having the toughest entrance requirements in the country. He never used the beleaguered players health or mental condition as an excuse in his plan. He does what people at Rice do – he just out-works you.
There is little doubt that the heart of this team is beating madly and there is a real love between the players and coaches. He has played every tune this season masterfully.
Many naysayers have pointed to his Texas State overtime playoff experience and chastised him for "losing his guts". To me, I don't care about a coach making an occasional mistake - I just want to know what he learned from the experience and what he will do the next time. In reflection, it seems Bailiff learned to trust his players more from that experience.
In turn, his players now completely trust him.
He may have fallen, but he got off of the mat and led this tattered bunch to the best season in fifty years. He trusted in his senior leadership this year and together they willed this team victory. He gave the team his heart, and then led them with battle tested guts. They, in return, gave the same back.
So much for the naysayers.
It's time to give the man and his staff due. We need to reward him with a contract in excess of the one TG was offered and extend his contract. He has a young family and is probably looking for a place to hunker down and raise his family. Why not here? Why not N-O-W?
He has assembled a staff that's put together some impressive recruiting classes and game plans. They are out working any staff that has ever been at Rice and done it with class and dignity.
Coordinators from large schools are making large sums of money and it is not uncommon for most coaches in successful programs to earn pay increases between 18% and 31%.
We are getting too much notoriety with our offense to expect the college community to ignore us for long. Our defense is starting to take shape, and some super talents are on the way.
Let's not start over. Let's not lose trust. Let's step up to the plate.
Mike Boyd is an independent businessman living in the Houston area. Boyd has had a long and passionate relationship with Rice Football ever since his son played football for the Owls over 10 years ago...