Mike McCarthy

USA Today

Mike McCarthy vs. High School Refs

What would you say if I told you that a former NFL head coach is making news away from the Combine?

February 28, 2019 - 11:21 am

What would you say if I told you that a former NFL head coach is making news away from the Combine? And that news is that he has been accused of berating officials at a high school basketball game?

Who would you guess that it was? 

Rex Ryan? Sure. Of course. Naturally. He runs hot. So does his bro Rob. Maybe it was Rex and Rob on that tandem bike from back in the day. Pedaling their asses off after some ref to tear him a new one. Is that guess. It would have been mine. And it would have been wrong!

Nope, the correct answer is Mike McCarthy.

Here are the opening few sentences to the report from FOX 11: FOX 11 has confirmed with Pulaski School District officials that former Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy was involved in an incident with referees following his stepson’s basketball game Tuesday night.

We've also learned a formal complaint about the incident has been submitted to the WIAA. 

There’s a phrase you never want to hear connected to you: “involved in an incident with referees.” Especially when you’re at the game as a parent. 

McCarthy has been a regular face in the stands at Notre Dame Academy's basketball games this season, however, his actions after the tight loss at Pulaski crossed a line, according to people at the game.

“This parent chose to follow the officials and berate them, which is clearly unacceptable,” said Janel Batten, Pulaski’s athletic director.

But it gets worse. The report continues. 

“Some things were said, some language was used that we don't want in our gym, unsportsmanlike language,” said Batten.

Mike, Mike, Mike. Michael. Come on, now. 

The report continues. When asked whether she had ever seen anything like that before from a parent: “Not here and not in my time as an athletic director,” said Batten, who has been the district’s athletic director for five years.

Look, I want to be fair about this. That is the athletic director of the opposing school, so maybe Mike’s not getting the benefit of the doubt.

But I’ll be honest, the video from security cameras isn’t great. It shows a heavyset dude identified as McCarthy, coming down out of the stands after a close loss, jawing at the refs, starting to walk past them and then following them down the side of the stands as they left the court.

And no, losers, I’m not here for you to come in with your “beefy McCarthy beefs with refs” takes. 

Or you’re “Hey Rome, running after the ref looks like the only running McCarthy’s done.” 

As always, when you folks are all busting out 4 minute miles, then we’ll talk about the strength, conditioning, and cardio capacity of former NFL coaches. And not until then. 

We don’t have the audio, so I don’t know what was said. But it sure doesn’t look like it was a collection of compliments. I doubt he was shouting “good job, good effort.”

And while we don’t have the audio, the video isn’t good. Not good at all. On any level. This guy was on an NFL sideline just a couple months ago, and now he’s screaming at high school refs and getting written up for it?

You’re not in Lambeau anymore. You’re in the Pulaski High School gym. Act like it. You can’t be working the refs at a high school game. Not when you’re a parent. 

How many times have I done a take on parents getting out of control at a youth sporting event? Countless. But I don’t recall the last time I did one that involved a former NFL head coach doing it. 

Look, I know there's a huge crew of people who have turned this dude into the worst coach ever. He's definitely not that. He's got a Super Bowl ring. He developed Aaron Rodgers into one of the best to ever do it. He won 10 games or more in 8 different seasons. 

But I can tell you what the dude is: The worst basketball dad ever. 

I know getting passed over for Adam Gase has to sting. But getting gassed by the gymnasium crew at Pulaski High had to hurt even worse. 

Getting fired in the NFL happens. Getting run from a high school game shouldn't.

Relax, Mike. Have a cream soda. Or ten.  You don’t have an NFL gig at the moment. Treat this time like a sabbatical. Take a step back and take a deep breath. This is supposed to be a time for you to be healthier and more relaxed. Instead, you’re yelling at Wisconsin high school refs after a basketball game. Healthier and more relaxed not heavier and angrier. C’mon, man. Drop a line in the water, crack open a case of root beer and wait for the phone to ring.