Get a haircut, Coach Hippie


Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan became a folk hero during his first season in New Orleans. He’s a free spirit who did a helluva job transforming the Saints D from historically horrendous to pretty darn good. Saints fans were further swept off their feet by Ryan’s showing up at local bars after home wins to buy a round for the house. The picture above is of Ryan at Ms. Mae’s, which is a semi-legendary Uptown bar that’s about 5 blocks from Adrastos World HQ. The picture was snapped by one of my Twitter pals, Chef Mary Sonnier.

But the main reason Rob Ryan became a folk hero in my town is his hair. Big hair, long hair. Rob Ryan’s hair has its ownFacebook page andTwitter feed. Apparently the suits at the No Fun League think that Rob Ryan’s leonine tresses are an impediment to professional advancement:

ESPN’s Chris Mortensen said several NFL executives told him that Ryan’s flowing locks won’t fly with front offices.

“If he wants to be a head coach, he has to cut his hair,” Mortensen said, quoting team executives. “It is about image for these guys. They want a CEO-type. That’s what they want.”

This puts Ryan in a hairy situation. He has the resume and the pedigree to be a head coach (his twin brother, Rex, is the coach of the Jets and his father, Buddy, coached the Eagles and Cardinals). But he may need to shave his locks.

Since Rob Ryan is a bona fide free spirit and non-conformist, I think he’d be crazy to even consider coaching a team run by malakas who would demand he cut his hair. For one thing, that could get him in trouble withDavid Crosby. For another, he doesn’t want to become the next Samson. We all know what happened to him after his locks were shorn. Besides, Ryan looks nothing likeVictor Mature.

I’ll give the Rev. Gary Davis the last word:

4 thoughts on “Get a haircut, Coach Hippie

  1. This is hardly a new phenomenon. I vaguely remember the brouhaha over a defensive lineman for the Patriots in the early `70s (whose name I’m embarrassed not to recall), who was distinguished by two things: he was a lightweight, around 175 pounds, with a near-extraordinary record of tackles, and a long mane of bright-red hair. The sports press was unrelenting in its estimation that long hair was unfootballish in the extreme, and their praise for his skills was, to be charitable, grudging. Both he and the Patriots were dogged with repeated assertions that he was a dope-smoking hippie, and was therefore bad for the sport, and the Patriots dumped him after a couple of seasons.
    Yet one more reason to think that football is the encapsulation of all that is reactionary in American society.

  2. Sort of reminds me of Marge Schott and the Cincinnati Reds way back in the ’80s when she decided that facial hair was verboten. Marge became the butt of multiple jokes and so was her bizarre policy. She sold her shares in the team and the policy disappeared to the applause of all but the old, mostly white, curmudgeons.
    The Eternally Self Promoting Network is pushing this nonsense because that’s what they do. There is no story here. If any NFL exec thinks Ryan’s hair is a problem he should be fired and replaced with someone who doesn’t think that micromanaging the help’s lifestyle choices is a priority.

  3. If he’s able to donate to Locks of Love, they’re taking a lot more gray than they were five years ago.
    But there is a program that takes “mature” locks, like mine. Pantene runs it in conjunction with Komen.
    So if he’s gonna donate, good for him.
    If he’s doing it just to not look like Rex, good for him.
    If he’s doing it just for the hell-and-be-damned of it, good for him.
    And I agree — the Saints need a better place to play than the Superdome. I was in it before the Federal Flood, and the old Texas Stadium was better.

Comments are closed.