AD backs SIU coach after tirade goes viral
Southern Illinois AD Mario Moccia backed coach Barry Hinson after a post-game tirade that went viral after Tuesday night's loss to Murray State, but said he spoke with Hinson on Wednesday about specifically calling out players in a public forum.
Southern Illinois athletic director Mario Moccia said he's talked to Barry Hinson about the coach's postgame tirade that went viral after Tuesday night's loss to Murray State, and Hinson told ESPN on Wednesday that his only regret was calling out one player by name.
During the rant after the Salukis' 73-65 loss, Hinson referred to his players as "mama's boys," used off-color remarks and called out starting guard Marcus Fillyaw.
"I've got a bunch of mama's boys right now," Hinson told reporters at his postgame news conference. "We just won't buck up and bow our necks. We've got to get through that. I'm tired of coaching a guy and having him roll his eyes or put his head down or feel sorry for himself. This is big time. People lose their jobs."
Moccia told ESPN.com on Wednesday that Hinson, who is in his second season at SIU, took over a "difficult APR [a four-year low score of 908 in 2012 after a slew of transfers] and social situation and is trying to fix it in the past 20 months."
"Barry cares about his players," Moccia said. "I know this is not the season he wanted to have after 10 games [2-8]. The losses have mounted, and he's frustrated. I just wish he didn't call out the players specifically and would have used more generalities."
Hinson specifically called out Fillyaw, who went scoreless in 14 minutes with one assist and two turnovers.
"Marcus was absolutely awful," Hinson said Tuesday night. "That's about as PG-rated as I can say it. He was awful."
Hinson told ESPN's Jeff Goodman on Wednesday that statement was his only regret.
"I regret one thing -- calling out Marcus' name," Hinson said. "That wasn't fair to him individually, and I'm upset about that. But I'm not upset about anything else I said.
"I'm not going to fake who I am. I'm an emotional guy and I love my players, but I was frustrated with their overall lack of effort. I felt bad about mentioning one of my player's names. That was a mistake."
Moccia said he spoke with his superiors Wednesday before talking to Hinson.
"I know he's a good man," Moccia said. "But he can have these Yosemite Sam bombastic outbursts."
The Salukis were outrebounded handily by Murray State, prompting another colorful response by Hinson on Tuesday night: "I've been telling my wife this for years: Size doesn't matter."
Hinson also ripped the team's forwards for going 2-for-11.
"My wife -- my wife! -- can score more than two buckets on 11 shots because I know my wife will at least shot fake one time. But those guys aren't listening. They're uncoachable right now."
Hinson also said if he were allowed to force it, the team would have practiced late Tuesday.
He then was even more direct about the way the players have competed recently.
"To me, when you've got a young team, it's a lot like house-training a puppy dog," Hinson said. "You know what, when the dog does something wrong, 'bad dog.' I'm not going to hit 'em. I'm not going to swat 'em, but bad dog, get on the treadmill."
Senior forward Davante Drinkard wasn't amused by the rant and tweeted, "I can't believe the little man had the nerve to call us mama's boys. Smh. I guess this is where Our team learns to point the finger."
The Salukis, who host Ball State on Saturday, have the worst record in the Missouri Valley Conference. SIU was 14-17 (6-12 in the MVC) during Hinson's first season.
Hinson said Wednesday he was made aware of Drinkard's tweet, which has since been taken down.
"He has the right to do that. If I have the right as a coach to go into a press conference and talk about our team, I can't get upset at a player that wants to fire back on a tweet either," Hinson told the "Dan Patrick Show" on DirecTV. "Freedom of speech, I'm all about that and I understand it.""
Moccia said SIU fans are used to Hinson's approach and have welcomed him in Carbondale.
"The one thing is Barry has connected with the fans, and he has exhibited passion," Moccia said. "People are used to his firebrand and bombastic outbursts. That's nothing new for folks around here.
"He does use a lot of colorful language, but people understand. A vast majority of fans like Barry and his passion. He's bringing energy to the program and trying to turn it around."
Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com contributed to this report.
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