The Daily Emerald, Oregon’s student newspaper, is reporting that Willie Taggart is refusing to talk to the Oregonian’s beat writer Andrew Greif, over wording in his January story about Oregon players being hospitalized during offseason workouts. Taggart took issue with Greif terming the workouts “grueling” and “akin to military basic training.”
Taggart told the Emerald the following:
“When you’re not fair and honest, then to me that’s personal,” Taggart said. “When you do something that’s negative and it’s going to be personal, then I won’t have shit to do with you.”
Taggart claims he described the workouts to Greif before the article ran and was not happy with the characterization after he “explained exactly what happened.”
“‘You’ve got to be shitting me,’ was kind of my reaction,” Taggart said. “I explained exactly what happened and he didn’t report it.”
Greif told the Emerald Taggart did not say that to him on the phone. Taggart was not quoted in the Oregonian piece.
This isn’t a great look for Taggart. It highlights a trouble for local college football reporting. How can you be appropriately critical of the coach when you are dependent on him for access to do your work?
It’s not clear what “I won’t have shit to do with you” means. Per the Emerald, Taggart answered questions from Greif at a Signing Day event in a group setting but did not respond to a text message. If this results in Oregon pulling credentials and Greif not being able to cover the team, it’s a bigger deal.