Before long, the commissioner had his man.
“I’ll tell you what it was,” Schottenheimer said. “My daughter said, ‘Dad, your grandchildren need to see you doing the things you did so well during your coaching career.’ I think that was what did it.”
Fair enough. Still, with all due respect, what drives a successful and accomplished football lifer to leave wife and home in Charlotte, N.C., and live out of a hotel for months in service of the no-profile Destroyers?
Schottenheimer says he can do without the national acclaim, the perks and even the salary that comes with being in the NFL - but you can coach chairs for only so long.
The UFL may have serious issues, but the quality of its players isn’t one of them. Eighty percent of the Destroyers spent at least some time in an NFL training camp. Quarterback Chris Greisen ended the 2010 season on the active roster of the Dallas Cowboys. Dominic Rhodes ran for 112 yards and a touchdown for the Indianapolis Colts in their Super Bowl XLI win over the Chicago Bears in 2007.
“I wasn’t a very good player,” said Schottenheimer, who started eight games in a six-year NFL career. “But it became apparent to me that I could do far better taking young men and teach[ing] them not what to do, but how to do it. That’s what I do.”
“Nothing’s changed,” Olivea said. “Same ol’ Marty.”
“The man’s amazing,” Whitehurst said.
Apparently, not just with technique, either.
It’s not clear what the UFL is paying Schottenheimer, as the league does not disclose salaries. Whatever it is, the league certainly seems to be getting its money’s worth. On the field, the Destroyers coalesced quickly under Schottenheimer, winning each of their first three games by double digits before falling in overtime Saturday at Sacramento in what proved to be their final regular-season game.
His off-field contributions may be even more dramatic. The team freely acknowledges that it markets Schottenheimer, who doubles as general manager, as the unquestioned face of the franchise. He promotes the team on television commercials and rarely refuses an interview. His face adorns the supply truck that hauls the team’s equipment.View Entire Story
By Elaine Donnelly
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