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Bill Stewart Speaks Softly. No Big Stick In Sight.

The Beckley Register-Herald had an interesting piece on Coach Stew yesterday.  Most of it deals with the Head Ball Coach's religious convictions, which don't need dissected on a sports blog.  However, there were a couple of interesting quotes that gave a little insight into what's going through Coach Stew's mind when he's riding hard on his players.

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He knows he has been labeled as a “soft” coach, the antithesis of former coach Rich Rodriguez, who was known to be rough around the edges.

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“I’ve said it before, and I’m sticking by it, that I am not going to use that kind of language on my men,” Stewart said. “Yes, I can get mad. Yes, I do get mad. But I don’t understand how anyone can use filthy language on a young man, to run him down, and then expect the player to have respect for him. That is not Billy Stewart’s way.”

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You know, on one hand I think that's really great.  That's what I love about Stew.  He makes a great "face of the program".  Hell, if football coaches were judged on shaking hands and kissing babies Stew would be the best in the country.  In the end though, the crux of his job is to motivate young men into getting their jobs done.  Has he succeeded in that?  I still say it's too soon to tell, but as someone who has worked with young people, I know fear can be an incredible motivating factor.  I hope Stew has something up his sleeve to keep the pedal to the metal this season. 

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Maybe some music?

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Often, a lockerrrom can be a tough place though Stewart allows his players to listen to music while lifting or preparing for practice.

“But nothing filthy or vulgar,” Stewart said. “They know my policy. If I hear it, it’s going off. I won’t put up with it. I don’t want to hear it. And just don’t want it around. We often have people visiting, a recruit, a recruit’s family ... I don’t want them to hear it.”

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Tommy James & the Shondells perchance?

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.