RUSH: Deflategate. Who knew what, when, and how did it happen, and how did they get away with it, and what should be done? Let’s start with the audio sound bites. Bill Belichick. I need to set this up. Some of you — many of you, maybe — I assume all of you are sports fans. When it comes to football and the playoffs and the Super Bowl, Bill Belichick despises press conferences. He doesn’t enjoy them at all. They are the worst aspect of his job. He doesn’t like dealing with them, and the reasons are many.
A, he doesn’t want to divulge any information about his team. He wants to keep everything, or as much as he can, secret. But he is forced by rule, again, to face the press a minimum number of times a week during the regular season. It increases in the postseason. Players, ditto. They have to face the media, postgame, any number of instances. Belichick hates it. He just despises it. He doesn’t want to divulge anything.
There’s a second reason why he doesn’t like it. And that is he really thinks he’s dealing with a bunch of clueless people that don’t understand what he does. He thinks the questions he gets are stupid and it’s just a total waste of time to him. So that is something that’s worthwhile knowing before we get into the audio sound bites of today’s press conference, because Belichick showed up today and did a press conference and divulged more — well, he spoke more, he said more words in an opening statement than anybody can ever remember, including the Spygate days.
And then the second phase of his press conference when he went to questions — and we have sound bites of that, too — where the everyday Bill Belichick meeting the media surfaced. He didn’t have any information. He didn’t provide anything. He didn’t say anything that nobody knew, but he spoke longer than he usually does.
So gotta take a break here. We come be back.
RUSH: Foxboro, Gillette Stadium, Belichick press conference where they talk about the deflated ball controversy. We have two bites from his statement, then we’ll get to the Q&A.
BELICHICK: When I came in Monday morning I was shocked to learn of the news reports about the footballs. I had no knowledge whatsoever of this situation until Monday morning. I’ve learned a lot more about this process in the last three days than I knew or had talked about it in the last 40 years that I’ve coached in this league. I had no knowledge of the various steps involved in the game balls and the process that went through, that happened between when they were prepared and went to the officials and went to the game.
RUSH: Now, you probably, if you haven’t yet, are going to hear from the rest of the day into tonight, you’re gonna hear from sports analysis, experts, that this is impossible. Bill Belichick, why, there isn’t anybody that exhales in that building and he doesn’t know about it. Claiming he doesn’t understand the process with the footballs? Belichick claiming that he didn’t have any knowledge of the various steps involved in the game balls and how they end up as game balls? And he says (paraphrasing), “I’ve been in this league 40 years and I have never had a conversation about air pressure in footballs.”
Clearly he’s nonplussed by this. But you’re gonna hear this stripped and taken apart. You’re gonna hear it analyzed and parsed and he’s gonna be proclaimed a liar and so forth. It would be great if it just happened once when Obama did a press conference, not some little idle fact check thing in the Washington Post the next day. And I’m gonna drop it. I’ve made my point about that. Stick to the issue here. Here’s the next one.
BELICHICK: The balls we practice with are as bad as they can be. Wet, sticky, cold, slippery, however bad we can make ’em, I make ’em, and any time the players complain about the quality of the balls, footballs, I make ’em worse, and that stops the complaint. There is never any sympathy whatsoever from me on that subject. Zero. Tom’s personal preferences on his footballs are something that he can talk about —
RUSH: Right there.
BELICHICK: — in much better detail —
RUSH: Right there.
BELICHICK: — and information —
RUSH: Right there.
BELICHICK: — than I could possibly provide.
RUSH: There is a first. That is the head coach of the New England Patriots throwing this whole controversy over to Tom Brady and making it his. And, ladies and gentlemen, one of the rules of standard procedure for head coaches, assistant coaches in the NFL, they take the heat for the players. After a game, things go wrong, that’s why you’ll hear a coach say, “This loss is on me. We were outcoached,” take it on them to protect their players. They do it to protect their players’ psyche. They do it to make sure their players don’t get down in the dumps. They take the heat. It’s part of the job. So this is different.
This is the head coach moving this controversy out of his office and down to the locker room at Tom Brady’s locker when he said, “Well, Tom’s personal preferences are something he can talk about in much better detail and information than I can possibly provide.” And people are focusing on that, too. Oh my gosh, never seen this before, head coach throw his own quarterback under the bus on this kind of thing. But up here at the top, when I watched the press conference, this I thought was pretty smart. “Well, the balls we practice with are as bad as they can be. They’re wet, sticky, cold, slippery, however bad we can make ’em, I make ’em, and any time the players complain about it, I make ’em even worse. I don’t give ’em any sympathy whatsoever.”
So he’s setting the table here for the fact, hey, we got footballs in horrible condition all over this building. We practice with ’em all the time. That’s where I thought he was going. It be totally understandable with me that some of those balls mistakenly ended up in the game, ’cause if he’s gonna make the case that they purposely put balls in horrible condition as a practice technique, then it makes perfect sense that a couple, three of them might accidentally end up in the game supply on a Sunday.
Now let’s go to the Q&A. The media pounced after the statement that Belichick made. It was time for the media to query and try to elicit even more from the coach.
BELICHICK: I’ve told you everything I know.
REPORTER 1: Coach, what do you say to your critics —
BELICHICK: I have nothing. I don’t have an explanation.
REPORTER 2: Notwithstanding what you’ve said here today, there are a lot of people questioning your integrity who say that you are win at all costs —
BELICHICK: I’ve told you everything I know.
RUSH: He just hates these things, I’m telling you, you can see it. He’s standing up there and he has to answer these questions from these Nimrods and he just doesn’t enjoy it whatsoever. And that’s the typical press conference you get from Belichick. I’m just gonna mention this one more time, just one more time, I’m sorry, probably gonna bore you, or not bore you, but maybe irritate you and I’ll drop it. Can you imagine a report saying, “Notwithstanding what you’ve said here today, Mr. President, Mr. Secretary, a lot of people are questioning your integrity, a lot of people questioning your –” Can you ever imagine that question being asked in a White House pressroom with a Democrat president? You can’t. Anyway, one more bite, then a quick time-out.
REPORTER 3: What do you say to critics who are challenging your character, which seems to go well beyond the sport of football?
BELICHICK: I told you everything I know.
REPORTER 4: I would assume you’ve had conversations with Tom about this issue and what happened —
BELICHICK: I have no explanation for what happened.
REPORTER 5: Coach, why do you think these controversies continue to follow you?
BELICHICK: I don’t have an explanation for what happened.
RUSH: We’re on to Seattle. I don’t have an explanation. I’ve told you everything I know. I don’t know what happened. We’re on to Seattle. I’ve given you everything I know about it. I don’t know any more than what I have auto told you. I’ve told you everything I know. We’re on to Seattle. It’s just funny as hell to me.
RUSH: This is Darla in Deming, Washington. Hi, and welcome to the EIB Network. Great to have you here.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. Thank you for taking my call.
RUSH: You bet.
CALLER: My only comment is I agree with you. The news conference this morning was obviously completely out of line, because the first thing Bill Belichick uttered out of his mouth was that, like us, the first he’d heard about this was on the news.
CALLER: It’s over. Move on. There’s nothing to see here.
RUSH: You know, that’s… (laughing) You know, that’s an interesting observation. The first thing he heard about it was on the news Monday, just like Obama.
CALLER: There you have it. Nothing to see here.
RUSH: The only thing that Belichick didn’t say… He didn’t say he was mad as hell about it, and was gonna get to the bottom of it and find out what happened.
CALLER: I think that’s too many words for Bill Belichick to utter at one time.
RUSH: No, it’s not. Don’t… Don’t…
RUSH: I’ll tell you, honestly, folks: Do not be misled by the persona of Belichick in press conferences. That’s not who he really is. That’s an affected personality. He’s not Mr. Vivacious and colorful, but he’s not like that.
CALLER: No, I meant that in terms of what you’re saying. He chooses what he says, and he chooses not to say more than he does.
RUSH: Oh, exactly.
RUSH: But it’s all rooted in secrecy. He does not want… It’s the competitive nature of things, the competitive edge. He just not going to divulge anything about his team. He’s not gonna say a thing about it. It’s nobody’s business. He hates having to fill out injury reports required by the league. Despises it. I remember I was at a game in Pittsburgh, Patriots and Steelers. It might have been a playoff game, and I think it was on an opening kickoff. One of the Patriots players got injured.
It might have been Rodney Harrison, for all I know. Someone was severely injured, might have broken a leg. It was close to the Steelers sideline. The Steelers trainer went out because he would be on the scene first, and the injury was bad. You could see that it was severe, and so the Steelers trainer, a good guy, runs out there. And the next thing I know, Belichick is halfway across the field demanding the Steelers trainer get away his player.
“You get away from my player! I don’t want you near him. Our trainers will take care of it. Our staff will handle it. You get out of there.” The Steelers trainer looked kind of sheepish and left. He never did get for the injured player. He was on the way; Belichick didn’t want him there. I mean, “You’re not gonna see a thing about my injured player! You’re not gonna know a thing about this injury. You’re not gonna be able to tell your coach about what happened out there. Get out of there!”
That’s his attitude. Here’s Jerome Bettis. Jerome Bettis is up for the Hall of Fame again this year, number 36 for the Steelers. He was on ESPN today after the Belichick press conference. The anchor said… “He said a couple things. No knowledge whatsoever until Monday morning, no further comment on the NFL investigation, no explanation for what happened. Do you believe Belichick, Jerome?”
BETTIS: I actually do believe him. I think, you know, what he wanted to do was go out there and explain to everyone that he had no knowledge of this until Monday. I think… I really believe he did, because I think in the scheme of things from a coaching perspective, this is such a small, small issue that he probably would never deal with this. It’s more an issue between a quarterback and, you know, the people who prepare the balls. I think that’s where the issue is.
RUSH: Next up was Brian Dawkins, former defensive back for Philadelphia Eagles, also on ESPN, and they asked him if he believed Belichick.
DAWKINS: It’s just hard for me to believe a guy that is as detailed as he is, you talk about all the ways that he messes up all the balls and all the different situations that they go through in practice. You know, the first guy I believe to take a safety at one point in a game. All those details. It’s hard for me to believe that he does not know anything about how the balls are prepped and taken back by the refs.
RUSH: So, you see, my friends, it’s all over the place out there. One more, Nancy Armour, USA Today sports columnist. Do you believe Belichick?
ARMOUR: Bill Belichick oversees everything. Nobody sneezes in that building without him knowing about it. So if something else was being done, you can be sure that he had some awareness of it.
RUSH: She doesn’t know. She doesn’t know that, and neither does Bettis, and neither does Dawkins. They’re just guessing based on their own intelligence guided by experience. But, Bettis said, “Nah, it’s beneath Belichick. He couldn’t possibly know about this.” The other two say, “(Snort!) He’s probably in charge of it! He’s in charge of everything else that happened in that locker room.”
RUSH: So I’m getting peppered with questions from all over the place, “Hey, Rush, aren’t the referees ultimately to blame? Isn’t it, for example, their job to make sure that all the rules are being followed in real time?” Well, the referees… It’s complicated. Referees give the footballs the stamp of approval two hours and 15 minutes before the game starts. As you know now, each team brings its own balls to use on offense. By the way, do you know who spearheaded that rules change, Mr. Snerdley?
Tom Brady. Tom Brady and Peyton Manning in 2006 went to an NFL owners meeting and addressed… I think it was an owners meeting. They addressed the competition committee. They said, “You know what? Every player, every quarterback like his own feel on the ball. Some like ’em brand-new, some of them like ’em old, some of ’em like fat, some of ’em like a little thinner. We’d really like the rules to be changed so that each team could bring its own footballs, the ones we’re used to practicing with and playing with.”
And the rules change was instituted. It’s that recent. It used to be that the home team provided the balls. So no matter where you look at this (chuckles), you end up at Tom Brady. Now, Belichick has thrown him under the bus. I mean, everybody’s writing about it, either mildly or directly or whatever. Even USA Today. Belichick just said, “Hey, don’t ask me. Quarterback’s in charge of this stuff. The quarterbacks are the ones that have to do with the ball. You’d have to ask Tom about that.”
So Tom normally meets the press on Friday, but they’ve moved it up to four o’clock this afternoon today. Now, after the balls leave the refs at two hours and 15 minutes before the game, I think they are checked at halftime again. I don’t recall off the top of my head how long into or how often during a game the balls are checked to make sure that they’re in proper condition and properly inflated. I don’t know how often it happens. But grab sound bite number 10. Like I say, NBC went out there and found a ball boy on the Today Show today. His name is Eric Kester. Ball boys are the employees of the teams. They are not employees of the league.
Eric Kester had this to say about his job.
KESTER: Deflating the balls right before the game after inspection would have been very difficult. At that point, thousands of people are pouring into the stadium. Officials, media, TV, crew members are everywhere. The altering of the balls is definitely coming from the quarterback’s end. For them, it’s really about how it feels coming off their fingertips.
RUSH: Okay, so here’s somebody else now throwing it right at, in this case, Tom Brady. I don’t know how you’d do it. Look, deflating a football… Here’s the thing about this: Deflating a football is not all that easy. I’m sure you’ve seen these, the needles that go in the basketball or football. You stick the needle in without a pump and that’ll deflate it. But if you don’t have a gauge, you don’t know how much air you’re letting out. It has to be totally on the basis of feel. In the Patriots’ case, 11 out of 12 balls were found to be underinflated.
But I don’t buy this notion it would be hard to do because so many people are pouring in. Let me ask you: The last time you watched a football game either at a stadium or on TV, when’s the last time you ever saw a camera showing you what a ball boy is doing with the ball at any time — other than running up and down the sideline, picking up a loose one, and throwing the official a new one? By the same token, this guy says, “Hey, there are too many people. You got TV people on the sideline, you’ve got coaches, you got the fans sitting real close.”
I guarantee you, if your average fan or TV exec happened to see a ball boy, he would automatically be accorded respect. He’s there. Obviously he has to have passed muster, security muster. So if a ball boy is spotted putting a needle into a football for a couple of seconds to deflate it, who’s gonna think anything other than, “Wow, man, look at how precise they play this game. He’s taking some air out of that football!” Who’s gonna think that they’re cheating? It could be done in broad daylight. Any number of people could see it and not think a thing of it — until now, of course.
So my point is, getting it done, even on the sideline? I don’t think it would be that hard to do at all. Let me ask you this, folks. How often do you think NFL players…? How can I say this gracefully? Are the kids back in school? (interruption) Okay. How often do you think NFL players hear the call of nature during the game and can’t possibly get to the locker room in time? What do you think…? (interruption) I’m talking number one here. What do you think happens? The player in need is surrounded by fellow players.
They form a tight circle, and you cannot possibly see what’s going on, and it would look like a meeting. It would look like the offensive unit huddling off on the sideline discuss something. This happens often. I donÂ’t know if it happens every week, but it happened in a Super Bowl once with the 49ers. One of their linebackers just had emergency city, couldn’t wait to go to the locker room. He told the story, laughed about it after the game. The point is, you could get this stuff done, if somebody wanted to deflate the footballs.
Obviously it’s been done, obviously it’s not that hard to do. Obviously. The Colts complained about it. Oh, that’s another thing. Do you know who actually started this is the Ravens? The Ravens apparently told the Colts, “You guys keep a sharp eye, because we think they’re playing with underinflated footballs.” This goes way, way back, even before November 16th when the “Coats” were in there, as Phil Simms says. “The Coats.”
There have been people gunning for the Patriots ever since Spygate, and they’ve been going for the Patriots anyway because they’re the top dog. They’re consistently playing better than any other team, and so they’re naturally going to be the targets. Troy Aikman — Hall of Fame quarterback, Dallas Cowboys, now an analyst on Sunday afternoon Fox coverage — was on Fox Sports 1, America’s Pregame. They got a cable sports channel, Fox Sports 1, and co-host Mike Hill said to Troy Aikman, “As you mentioned, Tom Brady does not like to wear a glove on his throwing hand. He wears a glove on the other hand. Quarterbacks now. So what are the chances that Brady didn’t even know those balls were not inflated properly?”
AIKMAN: I can’t imagine anyone doing anything to the footballs without the quarterback having knowledge of it. I know based on my experience, and knowing how much effort went in to trying to get the balls game ready and yet still fall within the guidelines of the NFL rules was challenging. And there’s no way that anyone would have done anything to the game balls without discussing it with me first.
AIKMAN: And so I can’t imagine that Tom Brady did not know that air had been taken out of the balls. My guess is it was his — it was his request, the way he preferred to throw with them, and that’s why it was done.
RUSH: Well, you can see what’s shaping up here. John Madden leads off last night. “Brady had to be the guy doing this. He’s the guy touching the ball! He’s the guy throwing the ball. You want to find out why they’re deflated? Go ask Brady.” Now here’s Troy Aikman. Now here’s the ball boy saying, “Well, the quarterbacks are in charge of the balls.” Tom Brady was thrown under the bus by his own coach, Belichick, today. By the way, something I said yesterday and the day before: Believe me, the league is hyper-worried about this.
Coming on the aftermath of blowing the Ray Rice situation and how badly that was said to have been handled and all of the other off-the-field problems where the league has been handing out suspensions and so forth, I guarantee you this comes under the category of “integrity of the game” in a big way. Now, in the legal scheme of things… This is what’s got some people curious. Why even do it? You’re playing in the Indianapolis Colts in the championship game, and unless you suffer major injuries, the Colts are not gonna win the game.
You don’t have to! You don’t have to! You don’t have to go outside the rules for an edge, in this game. Why did they do it? Jim Gray was posing this question on Fox today, the well-known sports expert that’s been on ESPN and NBC. He says, “Why do it?” Nobody has the answer to this. There’s an answer to it. There’s an answer to why do it. It’s cultural, any number of things. But the league? Whew! They have got to get this right, whatever it is. They’ve got to get the full story out right the first time they say, “This is the story,” and then if punishment is required, they’ve got to do that.
Now, there’s a big move on within certain circles that all of this should happen before the Super Bowl, and that if there is any penalty, that it be handed out on the Patriots so that they would be affected in playing the Super Bowl. There’s another school of thought that says, “No, don’t hurry. Take your time; get this right. You don’t have enough time to get it right before the Super Bowl. Don’t even try. Just take your time; get it right.” But do not doubt me on this. This is a huge deal. In the real world scheme of things, it’s not big deal.
It didn’t affect the outcome of the game.
But it’s a rules violation, integrity of the game. I tell you, they are worried, the league, about getting this right. They understand the reputation of the game going forward is on the line for a lot of people, a lot of entities. And it’s got… I mean, all hands are on deck for this one at the league office. One more before we go to time-out. Richard Sherman. You know, the Seahawks played the New England Patriots back in 2012. It was in Seattle. And in that game, the Patriots were on part of a West Coast swing, and they played I think at Oakland, and they stayed out there.
They went up, played Seattle, and had to go down and play San Diego, and that’s not normal.
Normally come home after each game and you fly back on the day before the next game. The Patriots were favored in this game over the Seahawks, and the Seahawks ended up winning it by a point. Richard Sherman after the game said (paraphrased), “Hey, this Tom Brady, Mr. Pretty boy? He’s not Mr. Pretty boy. This guy’s out there trash-talking us. He’s acting better than we are; he’s putting us down all the time. He’s not the guy you think he is.” That’s what Sherman said two years ago after they played.
SHERMAN: People somehow get a skewed view of Tom Brady, that he’s just clean cut, does everything right, and never says a bad word to anyone. And we know him to be otherwise.
RUSH: So you see what’s shaping up here, folks. I mean, it is… (laughing) Human nature being what it is, do you know how many people jealous of Tom Brady? Do you know how many? In the league and out, do you know how many people have just enjoyed this? It’s just human nature. People have schadenfreude. When the chosen fail, people are rejoicefully happy and so forth. But there have been people been jealous of Brady and envious of Brady, and they’re just pigs in slop today. They’re so happy. That’s why all of this is heading that way.
RUSH: Back to the phones we go to Naples, Florida, and this is Richard. Richard, great to have you with us, the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, gracias, Rush, thank you for taking my call.
RUSH: You bet.
CALLER: Hey, a question regarding these stuffed footballs. I find it hard to believe that you had a defensive back make an interception and then all of a sudden feel that the ball felt kind of funny. Who besides the center and the quarterback handles the ball almost on every play? The line judge or the field judge, right?
RUSH: That would be the line judge, referee, any number of them touch it every play.
CALLER: And nobody had a problem with it during that game.
RUSH: Well, the reason why D’Qwell Jackson, a safety for the Indianapolis Colts — remember, the Baltimore Ravens clued them in to be on the lookout for it all the way back in November. Now, apparently, folks, this is, you know, Spygate, the Patriots illegally videotaping the other teams sideline, apparently everybody knew that was going on for a long time, and nobody said anything about it. None of the opposing teams said anything about it.
And then Eric Mangini, who had been an assistant coach to Belichick at New England, goes to the head coaching job at the Jets, that’s how OJ Simpson used to pronounce it, the Jets when he was at NBC. And they had a game against the Patriots at old Giants Stadium, and the Patriots beat the Jets. It was after that game, during that game that Mangini finally blew the whistle, and he had credibility because he had just been on the Patriots coaching staff.
Everybody had known about this. It’s just that Mangini went public with it in the middle of this game, forcing an investigation. The Patriots videotaping was shut down in the middle of the game. I think that’s how it worked. He might have brought it up after the game, but I think it was during. Well, here what we’ve come to learn is this Deflategate thing has been going on for months. Apparently the Baltimore Ravens alerted the Indianapolis Colts to it back in November, and the Colts looked out for it, found examples of it, kept the balls to show people.
Nothing was done and so in the championship game last Sunday night D’Qwell Jackson intercepts a Brady pass and keeps the ball and then once again sends it up the chain of command on the Indianapolis sideline, and that’s how it finally became public. But it’s one of these things that didn’t just happen Sunday. It’s another one of these things that’s been going on for a long time that nobody said anything about. And all of a sudden somebody has said something about it, which has now resulted in any number of former players popping up and saying this, that, and the other thing about it, “Oh, yeah.”
Like Brad Johnson on the Buccaneers, “Oh, yeah. I used to tip the ball boys to get those balls the way I liked.” It was originally reported that he was bribing the ball boys and he’s gone public (paraphrasing), “I didn’t bribe anybody. I was tipping. I asked them to take care of the balls for me. I wasn’t doing anything illegal.” It got reported he was bribing ball boys.
But the referees, I don’t know that anybody could spot an improperly inflated football in the heat of battle like that just by virtue of touch, if you’re not using it every play. It’s not part of what the officials do is touch the balls. So that doesn’t surprise me, the officials wouldn’t notice it by touching it. I mean, it would have to really be soft and deflated to the point of being thrown out of the game if that was the case.
RUSH: I want to clarify something. I have fallen prey to something that I actually don’t believe. I’ve fallen prey to saying something that I actually don’t believe. I do not believe that Belichick has actually thrown Tom Brady under the bus. Everybody’s reporting that because in his presser today, Belichick said (paraphrasing), “Well, you have to talk to Tom about all of this. You know, the quarterbacks like the balls the way they like them, and I don’t know anything about it. I’ve never talked about air pressure. Forty years in this league and I’ve never talked about air pressure in the ball. I don’t have any idea. You’ll have to talk to Tom.”
And everybody has jumped on that comment as “Whoa! Brady has just been thrown overboard by Belichick,” which does not happen. And I don’t think it’s happened here. Brady is gonna have a press conference at four o’clock, and my guess is that there is a strategy involved here, and that’s a pretty informed guess — well, it’s not informed. I don’t know what they’re doing. I mean, it’s a well-educated guess that there’s some kind of strategy here to beat this back. But I do not believe — I’ve seen these guys — I don’t believe Belichick threw Brady under the bus like this. I just don’t believe it would happen. So even though it may look like that, I don’t think that when this is all over, that is going to be the perception of it.
Now, back to the phones we go. Where we headed? There was somebody up there I just wanted — they’re gone. What was he gonna talk — the guy that just dropped off, what was he gonna ask me? It was a good — (interruption) Well, the officials — ah, doesn’t matter. The officials are not gonna — they’re passing the ball around, they’re not holding on to the ball, inspecting the ball. Without any probable cause, the officials aren’t gonna have any suspicion here. The last thing the officials knew in this case was two hours and 15 minutes before the game the balls all checked out. They gave ’em the stamp of approval. They sent ’em out to the ball boys and that’s that.
I don’t think this is gonna focus on the officials, although, although, when it comes time for somebody to pay the price, when it comes time for the NFL to hand out suspensions or punishment, who better than some referee nobody’s ever heard of, who better than a couple of line judges, side judges and what have you, for not paying proper attention. There will obviously be some punishment for the violators, if that’s found to have occurred. (interruption) Will we see PSAs in the NFL about properly inflating your balls? You mean like the PSA’s we get on spousal abuse and so forth?
I doubt that. We might get PSAs on playing by the rules in general. Time will tell. Whatever their crisis managers tell them to do. Here’s Pete Carol. Pete Carol is the coach of the Seahags — pet name for ’em — Seahawks. Last night on CNN Tonight and Rachel Nichols interviewing Carroll said, “You are one of the 32 stewards of the game,” as one of the head coaches. “How important is it that these coaches relentlessly protect the integrity of the game?”
CARROLL: It is ultimately absolutely important. We’ve seen the power of the league and how at every turn of issues that have come up, one right after another, people have looked to the league for leadership. You can see the league and the league office working to figure out what is right and let’s stand for what’s right. And when we make our mistakes we admit to ’em and we fix the situation. And we send the message that that’s the right way to do things, and so we’ll see what happens with this.
RUSH: Right. Right. Seahawks, they’re gonna use this as a mental edge. They’ll use this, tell the players, “All right, we know they’re gonna cheat against us, guys, and that just makes our job even harder. They’re gonna try to cheat.” I can see Carroll setting it up even now. You know, stop and think, if you have any doubt when I tell you that they are all hands on deck at the league office on this because of the integrity of the game, don’t forget what happened with Bountygate and the New Orleans Saints.
Now, the head coach of the Saints, let me just remind you, was a guy named Sean Payton, and it was learned as a result of investigation — they didn’t just rely on Sean Payton’s word — there was a thorough inside-out investigation, and Sean Payton was found to have not known Bountygate was going on in his own locker room and was nevertheless suspended for a year because he didn’t know. He should have known that something as egregious as Bountygate was going on.
He didn’t know and their investigation didn’t turn up any evidence that he did know. The investigation the league conducted turned up nothing to indicate that Sean Payton had any idea what was going on, that he was behind it or anything. And they suspended him for a year. The defensive coordinator was kicked out of the game permanently until they decided to let him back in the game as a defensive coordinator for the Rams, Gregg Williams. I think he’s still with the Rams.
But, anyway, Payton, the head coach, was sent packing for a year and had no knowledge of what went on. And that was why, because what went on was supposedly so damaging to the integrity of the game. Well, okay, here we come this Deflategate and Belichick today (paraphrasing), “I had no idea what was going on up there. Talk to Tom Brady. I haven’t the slightest idea. I’ve never had a conversation about air pressure in the football for 40 years in the league.” There’s gonna be a lot of people here wanting to see some consistency with this. I guarantee you, this, in the league office, you would not want to be there right now while they’re trying to figure this out.
RUSH: This is Matt in New Orleans. Great to have you on the program, sir. Hello.
CALLER: Bogus Bountygate dittos from New Orleans. Commissioner Goodell has a very good blueprint to deal with Belichick and the Patriots, as he did with the Saints. But the difference is he actually has the allegations proven now. With the Saints, he accused them of doing something on Wednesday and proved — all his evidence said they did something on Thursday. It was a big non sequitur. It never, ever lined up. And it’s horrible that the Patriots can actually cheat in a championship game and get away with it.
RUSH: You know, I must ask you question just so I can be clear here. Are you asserting on this program that the Saints did not actually do anything illegal, that they did not actually do Bountygate, that the whole thing was made up, it never happened and nobody ever proved it? Is that what you’re saying?
CALLER: No, it was all a shell game. What they had was a performance incentive program where if you got a big play you would get this or you would do that. It was never based on injury. That’s horrible.
RUSH: I know, but the problem is they had a video, they had a video of the defensive coordinator in a pregame meeting against the 49ers, and he was instructing the defense — I’ll never forget — I saw this myself, I could not believe it, he said —
CALLER: His inside ACL.
RUSH: He said the “outside ACL.” When you go for this or that, outside ACL. And I said, my God, I’ve never —
CALLER: He didn’t say, “I’ll give you a hundred bucks if you do that.”
RUSH: No, but —
CALLER: That was the crux of the deal, that it was —
RUSH: All right.
CALLER: — Bountygate. It wasn’t that they were — anyway.
RUSH: Look, here’s the point about the Saints. I’ll reiterate it. See, the fan here is claiming they never proved there was money changing hands. The coach can say “go after the outside ACL” all day long, but that guy’s outside ACL wasn’t gone after in the game, by the way. Nobody went for the guy’s outside or inside ACL for that matter. I don’t think there even is one. That’s when anterior means. But, anyway, the coach was after investigation shown to have no knowledge of whatever went on and got suspended for that. He was suspended for a year for not knowing what was going on in his own locker room.
So here’s a Saints fan still burning up over that and now demanding, hey, the Patriots have admitted it. We got a problem up there. We know they cheated. They better get treated the way our team did. Well, from the fan standpoint, you can understand the passions and emotions.
Bob in Villa Park, Illinois. Great to have you, sir. Thank you for waiting. Great to see you here with us.
CALLER: Yes. Rush, I did some research on the low air pressure and Patriots balls, and discovered that, according to a science teacher, that there’s a physics law that describes the relationship between the pressure of a confined gas and its temperature. To make a long story short, if the balls were inflated at 70 degrees to 12 and a half pounds of pressure, game time temperature was 49 degrees, according to the science teacher, that the balls would lose one and a half pounds of pressure, and since the league didn’t check the Colts balls, I mean, case closed. Temperature and barometric pressure caused the balls —
RUSH: No, no, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah, ah. I’m not sure it’s accurate to say the Colts footballs were not checked. I think the Colts balls were measured after all this happened and were found to be within the league range. Is your point being that the balls would have naturally deflated because of the weather conditions?
CALLER: Yes, Rush. I was underprivileged and I grew up in the cold of Chicagoland here and we’d go outside in the Springtime with our basketballs and we couldn’t bounce them.
RUSH: Right, yeah. I remember when that used to happen to me, playing basketball —
CALLER: I believe you.
RUSH: — 20 degrees. No, I do. I do. Have you ever studied the impact of illegal immigration on farm communities in California in temperature ranges of 65 to 85 degrees?
CALLER: No, but I’ll bet there’s fewer of them when it’s 35 to 45.
RUSH: Well, probably so, but the point is you haven’t taken the time to study it, but you did look up the physics of an inflated or deflated football. Says it all. Just makes my point.
RUSH: Here’s Don in Apollo Beach, Florida. Don, great to have you. Welcome to the EIB Network. Hello.
CALLER: Good morning, Mr. Lushbaugh. Limbaugh.
RUSH: Great to have — did you call me Mr. Lushbaugh?
CALLER: I don’t know why. I’ve been waiting here for two hours and 45 minutes.
RUSH: Some days it would work.
CALLER: I love, admire, enjoy, and respect you, so it was worth the wait. I’m the guy that called you about your book about five months ago and asked you if you saw National Geographic or whatever, but I’m gonna praise you for the positive impact you’ve had on hundreds of thousands of children.
RUSH: Thank you very much.
CALLER: And your generosity. I listen to your show all the time, generosity for giving the callers a book.
RUSH: Shhh. Shhh. Nobody’s supposed to know about that. I appreciate that, nobody’s supposed to know about that.
CALLER: Okay, gonna get to the football thing, but I agree with your comments on the priorities of people in regard to the football thing, on the other hand, not with the government, okay? And I agree with you on Belichick not throwing Brady under the bus, but I think Obama’s throwing us all under the bus, okay?
RUSH: Well, everybody said Belichick has thrown Brady under the bus with his comments today about Inflategate or Deflategate. “You have to ask Tom about the footballs.” Brady’s press conference is at four, it’s a little over an hour from now, and I do not believe Belichick has thrown Brady under the bus. I think there’s a strategy that they’ve got, and it’ll all unfold before the media’s eyes at four o’clock today.
I think they wanted to set it up by having everybody think, my God, Belichick just threw Brady overboard. But I don’t think Belichick would do that. Certainly not 10 days before the Super Bowl. There’s something else going on here. It won’t be long before we find out what it is. But it’s amazing how automatically people thought Belichick threw his quarterback under the bus. It’s just not gonna happen.