You had it all, Coach Sal Alosi. You were the Head Strength and Conditioning Coach for the New York Jets. A position that is the envy of thousands of Exercise Science majors across the nation. There are only 32 positions like it. A strength coach in the N-F-L. The National Football League. The premier organization of the most awesome sport in the United States. You know, the one nation that says, “Fuck you world! We suck at your gay soccer, so we’re going to make up our own shit and dominate!” America, bitches!
Coach Sal had the world by its grime-crusted weight belt. Other Exercise Science majors have to slum it at community gyms, teaching 73 year-old retirees how to curl a two-pound dumbbell without splintering their ulna. Coach Sal, at the tender age of 33, got to pal around with some of the most gifted athletes in the world. He was fast-tracked into a career as an NFL strength coach. Sure, he had to pay his dues as an intern for a year. After that, he was hired full-time by the Jets in 2003 and by 2006 he was leading the Jets’ strength and conditioning program.
Coach Sal had the grueling task of keeping elite, world-class athletes in shape. He didn’t have to prepare game plans. He didn’t have to burn the midnight oil watching film. He didn’t have to give halftime speeches. He didn’t have to face the media—until now. All Coach Sal had to do was keep players in shape—the same ones who are paid like a million dollars a year to stay in shape. Like a billion dollars. I’d have a six-pack and take my vitamins every day, too, with incentive like that. Just tell me what to do, coach. If only there was a place in the NFL for a slow, 5’9”, 30-something who can’t catch.
Sorry to minimize the job of strength coaching. I honestly have the utmost respect for strength coaches. They usually know their shit and continuously study all the coma-inducing details of exercise theory and nutrition so you don’t have to. Do you think because you lurk the Bodybuilding.com forums that you’re qualified to coach strength? Go ahead and pick a fight with a real strength coach. Take that John Cena Four-Day Split that you clipped from Men’s Fitness and tell a real strength coach he doesn’t know his ass from a hole in the ground. Just bring a video camera so I can laugh my happy ass off at the whole scene.
As fine a job as strength coaches do, let’s be real: it’s still the least stressful coaching job in football. Coach Sal has no tasks on game day. His only real concern is that his boys don’t gas out in the 4th quarter. They stay alive, he keeps his gig.
Which begs the question: why in the fuck was the strength coach on the sidelines anyway? Sure there’s a glut of media, cameramen, VIP’s, cheerleaders, and mascots out there. But they all know their role and stay back. Coach Sal was right in the thick of things, sporting the official gear, and shooting the bull with players. What was he coaching out there? Does he make the receivers do pushups if they drop a pass? Does he hand out hits of Hydroxycut at the end of the third quarter?
Upon being caught red-handed (kneed) by the unblinking CBS Sports cameras in high definition glory, Coach Sal claimed a momentary lapse of judgment. Temporary insanity. Nice try there, coach. Had that been the case, I would be more understanding. An opposing player runs by you unchecked. In the heat of the game, you stick your knee out to trip him up. It’s amazingly stupid, but still forgivable one time. You get fined, you get suspended, you get crucified by the media. But ultimately, you keep your job. The funny thing is we all learned from Jets’ general manager, Mike Tannenbaum, that Coach Sal instructed some inactive players to stand with him near the field and deter Miami’s gunners from running out of bounds on punts. He planned this.
To be fair, it was a bitch move by Miami defensive back, Nolan Carroll, to get blocked out of bounds and then run down the sidelines without making any effort to get back on the field. Nolan Carroll is a bitch. Fine. Yell that to him, flip him off, tell him about how your grandmother has bigger nards. Act like a fan because you are just a fan on game day, strength coach. Tripping the player is not only cheating, but it is an even bigger bitch move than running a play out of bounds. You don’t call out a bitch by upping the ante and being an even bigger bitch. Coach Sal premeditated the whole transgression and was the ringleader of the Jets’ trip gang.
Certainly every football fan has fantasized about that moment. The other team’s running back breaks free and has a clear lane into the end zone. You work up the courage to jump the fence, run out on the sidelines, and stick out your foot to give that running back a Deion Sanders toe-trip that sends him tumbling to the turf. Maybe I’m the only one. The difference is that I don’t actually do it. It’s like being stuck behind some old crank who is driving below the speed limit and won’t get their self-righteous ass out of the passing lane. You want to jump out of your car with a Ginsu knife and hack that fucker’s Lincoln Town Car into lawn ornaments. You don’t actually do it. Coach Sal took that untenable step from playful daydream to real life, boneheaded action; for that he deserves all the punishment the NFL can dole out.
Coach Sal, you are now branded for life as a complete douche-nozzle. Getting paid to coach a game is a privilege and you blew it. Your premeditated lapse of judgment will be forever immortalized on YouTube as an example of how not to be a strength coach in any sport, on any level. So much for that Exercise Science degree.
You want fries with that?