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  1. #1
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Bernie is not happy unless he is stirring the pot and causing turmoil among Rams fans. His latest soap opera is attacking Steve Spagnuolo's supposed cutting of all ties with the past.

    His evidence is, as usual, anectdotal, at best. He cites to the firing of the Rams long-time trainer. He recently interviewed Jack Youngblood, who expressed his frustration over the Rams' failure to use him and other greats of the past as resources to develop Chris Long (never mind the fact that Chris has a HOF DT to work with him every time he visits his family). He keeps mentioning the supposed removal of photos of former Rams from Rams Park.

    Of course, he also conveniently ignores contrary facts. For instance, Spagnuolo has reportedly expressed an interest in talking to Isaac Bruce about a possible coaching position. Also, Spagnuolo didn't have any problem having Deacon Jones' jersey retired at the Rams home opener (his first home game as a HC). Finally, the current Director of Player Personnel is Lawrence McCutcheon (a teammate of Youngblood's) and Ray Agnew (who played on the 1999 championship team) is a scout.

    Why is Bernie doing this? Well, for one thing, he's made it no secret that he does not like the fact that Spagnuolo does not give him and other sportswriters the kind of access they had under previous HC regimes. But, when it comes down to it, Bernie just likes to stir the pot and then say "see?" when things go badly.

    In the end, though... this is just soap opera material. It has nothing to do with the team's success or failure. When Jimmy Johnson took over for Tom Landry, he broke ties with the Cowboys' past. How did that turn out? Then, he did the same thing when he replaced Don Shula in Miami. How did that turn out? Same person, same approach, different results. Hmmmm... maybe it doesn't really matter that much.

    If the Rams are going to succeed, it will be because they have talented players lead by the right coaches. Whether the greats from the past (who certainly should be revered and respected) are on the sidelines has little, if any, impact on the W/L column.

    So, there... I've said my peace. I will now ignore, and withhold comment regarding, any future soap opera comments by Bernie regarding the "break from the past."

    I'm more interested in what is being done for the future.
    Last edited by AvengerRam; -02-04-2010 at 02:33 PM.


  2. #2
    AtlantaRamFan's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    We were just talking today in my Writing for the Media class about times when news is slow, journalists will rehash the same stories or in some cases, make news out of things that aren't really news worthy. Neither of these is terribly professional. I really feel like Bernie stirs the pot because things are pretty slow, and honestly its probably easier than actually finding a real story.

    Its the offseason in baseball as well, but I just read a great piece about how a young pitcher worked is way to the majors. Complete with interviews of minor league coaches etc..Why can't Bernie write something like that? Something informative and productive..

  3. #3
    RebelYell's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Bernie is a hack. (not the Clanram Bernie)

    Semi-related note: Last night on 101.1 Demarco Farr said that as a non Ram it is against the norm for him to comment on the technique of a player to the player himself. It's considered disrespectful of the current coaches in football circles. He said if the player came to him, he could give his opinion but he can't give it unsolicited. To get to this he said that Jimmy Kennedy had horrible form. He said it was obvious to everyone and watching practice he could see 4 serious problems in his technique that were all easy fixes for most players but that Kennedy wasn't working on fixing them. One of them (if I remember correctly) was that he came up straight out of his stance to locked knees which killed his momentum.

    My point: if this was so obvious to Farr, why weren't people like Jim Thomas and Bernie pointing out in their articles that the defensive line coach may be part of the problem? I remember Jim Thomas and Gordo explaining specifically it wasn't the d-line coaches problem because he was well liked. That's an example to me of pathetic journalism and something that's pretty rampant at the Post.

  4. #4
    RamVee Guest

    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Quote Originally Posted by AvengerRam View Post
    Bernie is not happy unless he is stirring the pot and causing turmoil among Rams fans. His latest soap opera is attacking Steve Spagnuolo's supposed cutting of all ties with the past.

    His evidence is, as usual, anectdotal, at best. He cites to the firing of the Rams long-time trainer. He recently interviewed Jack Youngblood, who expressed his frustration over the Rams' failure to use him and other greats of the past as resources to develop Chris Long (never mind the fact that Chris has a HOF DT to work with him every time he visits his family). He keeps mentioning the supposed removal of photos of former Rams from Rams Park.

    Of course, he also conveniently ignores contrary facts. For instance, Spagnuolo has reportedly expressed an interest in talking to Isaac Bruce about a possible coaching position. Also, Spagnuolo didn't have any problem having Deacon Jones' jersey retired at the Rams home opener (his first home game as a HC). Finally, the current Director of Player Personnel is Lawrence McCutcheon (a teammate of Youngblood's) and Ray Agnew (who played on the 1999 championship team) is a scout.

    Why is Bernie doing this? Well, for one thing, he's made it no secret that he does not like the fact that Spagnuolo does not give him and other sportswriters the kind of access they had under previous HC regimes. But, when it comes down to it, Bernie just likes to stir the pot and then say "see?" when things go badly.

    In the end, though... this is just soap opera material. It has nothing to do with the team's success or failure. When Jimmy Johnson took over for Tom Landry, he broke ties with the Cowboys' past. How did that turn out? Then, he did the same thing when he replaced Don Shula in Miami. How did that turn out? Same person, same approach, different results. Hmmmm... maybe it doesn't really matter that much.

    If the Rams are going to succeed, it will be because they have talented players lead by the right coaches. Whether the greats from the past (who certainly should be revered and respected) are on the sidelines has little, if any, impact on the W/L column.

    So, there... I've said my peace. I will now ignore, and withhold comment regarding, any future soap opera comments by Bernie regarding the "break from the past."

    I'm more interested in what is being done for the future.
    I agree wholeheartedly! He's one unhappy man!!!! Always trying to find something with this regime to criticize.

  5. #5
    NJ Ramsfan1 is online now Registered User
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    I agree with AV in that the past has nothing to do with moving forward with this current team. This coaching staff is doing what they feel is best to make the Rams competitive and restore pride. Hopefully, they are on the right track and are making sound decisions in the best interests of the franchise. They better be: next year will not be so forgiving of the current regime if another miserable record rears its ugly head.

    With that said, I am a big believer in respecting those that came before you, and in my opinion, the Rams have a mixed record in the area of recognizing contributions from past players and keeping many of these guys in the fold to some degree. Yes, Lawrence McCutcheon is here. Yes, Henry Ellard was once a coach here. Yes, the late Jack Snow was a Rams employee. But if I were an owner or a coach, I wouldn't hesitate for a second to contact the Jack Youngbloods, the Merlin Olsens, the Nolan Cromwells, the Deacon Joneses, the Marshall Faulks etc. for advisement on a variety of issues. This in no way means the current brass or coaching staff has to cede their authority to anyone. It simply means involving members of the Rams extended family who have a desire to see the team be successful- as it was when they played. Nothing wrong with that.

    Not retiring Deacon's jersey until this season is a disgrace. Sharing a ring of honor with old St. Louis Cardinals players is absurd (does Cleveland have all the ex Rams in their buildng?) THIS IS THE HOME OF THE RAMS- and it should be a shrine to both past teams and the current club.

    We can debate Bernie's intentions- who knows what his motivation is- but I feel there is some validity to what he says. And let's be honest: Spags didn't help himself here. If he ordered the removal of the GSOT pictures ( I still don't know if he did), it is a mistake. It is a part of Rams history, and certainly more enjoyable than the crap we've watched for the past five years. You've also got to expect people to express bewilderment when no explanation is forthcoming as to the firing of a head trainer that's been there 26 years- as if it's some state secret. When things like this transpire, articles like Bernie's are printed.

  6. #6
    Warner4prez Guest

    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Sometimes I lurk on the Post-Dispatch forums just to see what they're talking about on there and it's kind of sad to see that a lot of the posters on there gobble up what Bernie sells them. There's almost more anti-ram senitment on a STL forum than there might be on a San Fran board. I just don't get it.

    Myself, I say if he's cutting ties with the past, that's great! It's like siblings that have to live in their family's shadow. It does no good for current players on the team to feel dread because they're unable to live up the the GSOT. Would you want to look at a bunch of photos of Warner hoisting up a Lombardi trophy?

    It's Spags' job to motivate however he'd like to. If he doesn't want the ghosts of Rams past to do it, that's his perogative.

  7. #7
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Quote Originally Posted by NJ Ramsfan1 View Post
    I If he ordered the removal of the GSOT pictures ( I still don't know if he did), it is a mistake.
    That is actually one of the best examples of Bernie distorting the truth.

    Here is what Peter King wrote on this subject after his visit to Rams Park last August:


    Here's an example of Spagnuolo touching everything in the building: There used to be framed large photos of individual players doing great things on the walls all over the building. Now, the only photos are of team accomplishments, such as gang-tackling.
    The way Bernie describes it, you'd think that Spags left the walls bare. Pretty significant difference between BM's characterization and the actual truth, if you ask me.
    Last edited by AvengerRam; -02-04-2010 at 05:27 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Hey, Av did you see Bernie's Marshall Faulk segment?

    Gotta love it.


    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams

  9. #9
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Quote Originally Posted by Varg6 View Post
    Hey, Av did you see Bernie's Marshall Faulk segment?

    Gotta love it.
    Marshall Faulk, the player: big fan.

    Marshall Faulk, the person/commentator: not so much.

    I'll leave it at that.

  10. #10
    Molotov Guest

    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Yeah, Bernie has really fallen on hard times. I still read his stuff for laughs though. He's the Geraldo Rivera of local sports writing. Maybe he should have a special where he opens Roman Gabriel's locker for the first time in 40 years. But I doubt he knows who Gabriel is.

  11. #11
    PeoriaRam's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    My question(s) to Youngblood would be... 1) Who did you make this offer to in 2008 and 2) Did you renew the offer before 2009 or just assume that John Shaw, the only guy left from the 2008 group in the organization, would relay this information to his successors?

    I can see why the Rams would decline the 2008 offer; Shawmunt would think this sounds like a way to spend money, Linehan at that stage was a small person who felt threatened by all and saw enemies around every corner, and Haslett wasn't interested in player development. I'm less sure why they would decline the offer in 2009 unless they didn't know it was on the table.

    As for the pictures, I made this point before. Besides being symbolic of a needed change to the team's culture, two of the biggest figures on the GSOT (Warner and Bruce) now played for division rivals. They have done great things for the Rams in the past, but right now they are the enemy and therefore should not be used as figures to look up to.

  12. #12
    NJ Ramsfan1 is online now Registered User
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    I respectfully disagree with you guys regarding the pictures. To my knowledge, the headquarters of many NFL teams feature oversized still shots of many of the team's great players of the past. There is absolutely no reason why some of the players who represented a fine time in Rams history shouldn't be so honored. It has nothing to do with "living in the past" and everything to do with giving every player in that organization a team history lesson and showing them what the ultimate goal is. To try and distance yourself from that is a poor approach.

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    PeoriaRam's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    Quote Originally Posted by NJ Ramsfan1 View Post
    I respectfully disagree with you guys regarding the pictures. To my knowledge, the headquarters of many NFL teams feature oversized still shots of many of the team's great players of the past. There is absolutely no reason why some of the players who represented a fine time in Rams history shouldn't be so honored. It has nothing to do with "living in the past" and everything to do with giving every player in that organization a team history lesson and showing them what the ultimate goal is. To try and distance yourself from that is a poor approach.
    If the organization hadn't spent most of the decade pining like Miss Havisham for the GSOT and its personnel decisions were not predicated on the idea that we could easily bring it back, you might have a point. Unfortunately, we did and they were, and we are in the hole we are in largely because of it. As a result more drastic measures, such as changing out the pictures, are required for the good of the organization's psyche and focus. Think of it as being like flushing all of your cigarettes down the toilet the day you decide to go cold turkey.

  14. #14
    Varg6's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    I agree with you NJ but I think it's just a symbolic thing Spags wants to incorporate into the whole rebuilding process. Personally, I'd prefer him keeping those pictures but I get what he's trying to do. In no ways do I believe he's trying to disrespect past players but I can see that instead of dwelling or remembering the past, the GSOT, for example, we're going to build a new Rams identity, a new legacy and getting rid of the pictures is just a symbol of that. I think once the Rams create their identity and become a respectable team again, I think then Spags could possibly put those photos back on the wall.


    Always and Forever a fan of the St. Louis Rams

  15. #15
    AvengerRam's Avatar
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    Re: Bernie's Latest Soap Opera

    I can't believe anyone feels the need to argue that the photos are significant. To paraphrase Allen Iverson... we're talking about photos... not games... photos...

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