A former college and NBA great, Jerry Stackhouse is coaching his way out of the head job at Vanderbilt University. That’s not all he’s doing, either. As his program sinks lower and lower in the Southeastern Conference, he’s resorted to taking down Trump supporters and alleging they think black coaches don’t matter.
In less than two full seasons as head coach of the Commodores, Stackhouse has a dismal record of 16-31 overall and 4-23 in Southeastern Conference games. He’s won just two conference games this season. To shift blame for his failures, Stackhouse went on a rant for the ages, implying that fans who were stupid enough to vote for Donald Trump are not qualified to question his coaching techniques. (In 2020, Trump won over 60% of the vote in Tennessee, although Biden won almost 65% in Nashville's county, where Vanderbilt is located.) They’re racists who don’t accept Stackhouse’s diverse coaching staff. He also criticized Stadium sportswriter Jeff Goodman, who’s been chronicling his team’s failures, and media pointing out he had limited head coaching experience before Vandy hired him.
According to writer Joe Rexrode of The Athletic, Stackhouse said people are losing sight of where his basketball team is. He should hope they are, because the team is dead last in the Southeastern Conference men’s basketball standings. He went off on these allegedly stupid people who don't appreciate his coaching or his minority assistant coaches:
“How am I not qualified when I played basketball at the highest level and played under some Hall of Fame coaches? I don’t have the acumen to know what I’m looking at? What’s the angst? And it becomes the things we see right in front of us, man.
“All I can say is, 75 million people voted for Trump. That’s all I can say. You ain’t fooling me. I know what it’s about, a lot of you hate everything we did when we came here about the staff, the diversity of the staff, it was this or that. And I like to think I know a little something about building teams and what organizations should look like. I’ve worked and played for some of the best organizations.
Stackhouse has three assistant coaches of color and a female special assistant, but it’s the inability to build a winning team – not skin color and gender – that is getting the most attention this season. There’s no documented evidence of presidential voting preference determining which Vandy fans are upset with a losing team and a coach who doesn’t get it.
As Outkick’s Sam Amico put it, the defiant and childish Stackhouse thinks he “deserves more of chance to fail” from fans “who are angry that Vanderbilt stinks.” Questioning the intelligence and the political allegiance of the people buying tickets and paying your salary isn’t going to win Stackhouse any favors. Sportswriters, whatever their political allegiance is, aren’t going to let up on Vanderbilt’s losing ways, either.