Athletes don’t deserve public criticism from coaches

by Matt Neville—University alumnus

Tubby Smith has been at the University of Minnesota for five years. Every player on the team is hand-chosen by him and his staff. Yet, when he has faced adversity, he has continually aired his frustrations with individual players publicly. Last year he chose Blake Hoffarber to publicly criticize after asking him to play out of position at point guard. This year it is Ralph Sampson III. Sampson is an easy target for Smith since he has failed to meet the expectations placed upon him by the coaching staff and fans. Sampson has had expectations placed on him since a young age and handled himself with great poise. He has by all accounts been a good teammate, student and member of our community. It is time for Gopher basketball fans to show some appreciation for the commitment Sampson has made to our university. Shame on Tubby for taking the easy way out, again.