Hey, remember when a botched replay call seemed to bring San Diego State and BYU within one sternly worded press release of meeting in an abandoned warehouse somewhere for an Anchorman- style rumble that would settle things once and for all? (Or, at the least, a really intense water balloon battle?) The Mountain West's ruling on the matter seemed to quiet things down for a while, but new Aztecs head coach Rocky Long made it clear yesterday that he's not interested in calling a truce anytime soon between his team and the newly-independent Cougars:
“They’re saying they don’t need us, and they’re saying they can do a whole lot better without us, so you don’t make their scheduling easy,” Long said ...
“After five or six years or something, I think they’ll be in a conference,” Long said. “But after five or six years, if they’re still independent, I wouldn’t mind playing them at all. But I don’t want to play them (until then) because I think they treated the league the wrong way.
“There has to be a period of time when we don’t play them, because I don’t like the way they treated the league.”
Why Long is holding this kind of grudge against BYU but not fellow MWC ship-jumpers Utah and TCU isn't entirely clear ... well, not until Long does make it clear that he doesn't think much of BYU's reliance on players who have spent two years away on Mormon missions (emphasis added):
“I’ve had several players who have played in our program who have gone off on missions,” Long said. “The positives really outweigh any negatives from their going on missions. We can talk about a certain school -- but I’m not going to talk about any other school but ours -- how the maturity factor and age factor gives you a huge advantage . When [new Aztec signee Sam Meredith ] comes back, he’ll potentially be a much, much better football player than we leaves on his mission.”Hearing that, it's hard to think that Long's anti-Cougar scheduling slant actually stems from BYU's treatment of the MWC or Replaygate or anything else specific; it's just good ol' run-of-the-mill hate forged from Long's (long) years of battling BYU as the head coach at New Mexico and an assistant at SDSU.
Which, as a follower of college football, is the kind of hate we can totally support. Here's to hoping BYU and SDSU decide to tangle a lot sooner than Long would like.