Pray as you go: Bill McCartney, the once and future 
Pray as you go: Bill McCartney, the once and future coach?

The Passion of the Pigskin

Editor's note: These writings, scribbled in a tiny, cramped hand, graced the flyleaf of a battered copy of Are You Running With Me, Jesus? recently discovered in an abandoned locker at fulsome Folsom Field. Although their authenticity has not been verified, the handwriting expert consulted in the JonBenét Ramsey ransom-note case says he believes they belong to former CU Buffs coach Bill McCartney, the founder of Promise Keepers.

March 20: Oatmeal, banana, and so to bed. Slept the sleep of the righteous.

March 21: Caught the senior special matinee of the Passion again. I wish our people had a filmmaker as talented as that papist Gibson. The tenth time around, you can really appreciate the awe-full suffering of Our Lord -- and the flaying technique. Came home to a message from a "President Hoffman" at CU. No doubt some bow-tied, football-hating secularist like that Gee. Called back and got a secretary named Bootsy, who refused to let me speak to the boss. After some confusion, hung up.

March 22: Turns out Bitsy is the president. (Didn't they learn anything from the Albino fiasco?) She says the Board of Regents wants me back as interim coach (and, I presume, spiritual advisor, though Bitsy was a little vague on that point) while Barnett twists in the wind. I prayed mightily on this and then informed my dear wife of my decision. "If you're confessing to another ancient adultery, I really don't want to hear it," said Lyndi, the little kidder. Then I called Bill Owens to follow up on my suggestion that he take a polygraph to establish whether his little witch-hunt isn't politically motivated. I offered to go on the box, as they say, if he would. The governor snickered and sent his best to Lyndi. The effrontery, the sheer popery of that fellow. He needs to make a clean breast of it.

March 23: First closed-door meeting with the troops went well. They seem to be fine young men, God-gifted and full of zeal. I told them we were here to complete as well as compete, that I would expect nothing less than world-class humility and absolute purity. That we were one big family with one head of household, and there would be no fornication among family members, no matter what wayward daughters might throw temptation their way. No prayers, of course -- don't need the ACLU on our butts -- but our hard work and dedication will be a paean to the Almighty.

March 24: The campus has changed. Dropped in on freshmen last night and found two of them engrossed in this Queer Eye program, in which a team of sodomites offers fashion tips to strapping young men while secretly groping them. I told the boys that polluting themselves with godless filth was dumber than punting to Rocket Ismail. I don't think they understood what I was talking about.

March 25: Near mutiny on the practice field today. Inspired by the season, I had the assistants rustle up some new training equipment from a construction site, perfect for mortifying the flesh and building character. Overt religious displays were avoided, but there was still mucho grumbling about the lumber-hauling and loud lamentations over a simple little gantlet. The way my soldiers were carrying on about it, you'd think somebody was pounding nails into their palms. Can't anybody here play this game?

March 26: Little misunderstanding at the press conference. All I meant to say was that we were going to be vigorous in our pursuit of a bowl bid, but somehow the right words eluded me. I never intended to suggest that the NCAA was a "fallen woman" who had to be "forcefully redeemed" or any of that, but you know how the secular media takes everything out of context. It's all over ESPN, and this Betsy Hoffman is calling for my scalp. We're definitely in fifth-down territory now. Only a miracle can keep me here. My Regents, why have you forsaken me?

March 27: Granola, banana, and so to bed.


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