On the Houston airwaves this morning was a whole hairy mess of an interview between 610 Sports Radio hosts Nick Wright and John Lopez, and University of Houston football coach Tom Herman.
At issue was a report by Lopez, a former newspaper columnist, about a meeting between Herman and former Texas A&M quarterback Kyle Allen, who recently transferred to UH. An exhausting and sometimes pedantic debate breaks out, with the argument centering on the question of whether a phone call constitutes a meeting, and the implications of that answer for Lopez and Herman.
Herman likens Lopez to someone who reports there is a fire, but gets the date and location wrong.
“So John Lopez goes out and he reports, you know, ‘Giant Fire in the City of Houston, Dozens of Lives Lost and Millions of Dollars of Damage Done. And then it turns out that, yeah, there was a fire, but it was in Phoenix, and nobody got hurt, and no property was really (damaged). Yeah, you got the story right, John. There was a fire.”
Lopez reported reported earlier this week that Allen was in Houston to meet with Herman. Herman disputes that, saying he only spoke with Allen over the phone.
“He’s arguing you can’t meet someone over the phone,” Wright said. “Which is semantics and beneath everyone involved in this interview.”
The reason it matters to Herman is that he was recruiting a different quarterback at the time, and that quarterback saw Lopez’s story, and asked Herman if he was meeting with Kyle Allen.
“The quarterback in question had an issue with, ‘You said you didn’t meet with him, This guy, this reporter, this journalist is reporter you did meet with him. Coach, are you telling me the truth or not?'” Herman said. “And now I have to defend myself against the facts.”
Now, it seems like the distinction between a meeting and a phone call might not have made much difference to the quarterback in question, either, but you can understand why Herman would want to be able to say he didn’t tell a lie. Which he can do as long as he doesn’t count half truths.
The apex of the thing comes at the 15-minute mark, when Herman tells Wright he’s read his tweets and thinks they’re unbecoming of a journalist, and a debate breaks out about how to classify Wright’s career.
It ends with Wright asking Herman if they could have lunch sometime.
“Absolutely not,” he says.