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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, August 3, 2005

Glanville devoted to football and Jones

By Stephen Tsai
Advertiser Staff Writer

"If June Jones leaves tomorrow, I'm leaving," Jerry Glanville says. "I'm just here to help a guy who helped me twice."

Deborah Booker | Honolulu Advertiser

Jerry Glanville plans to give freshmen practice time. "If you let the safety learn by sitting and watching ... he learns how to sit and watch."

Deborah Booker | The Honolulu Advertiser

Jerry Glanville, the University of Hawai'i football team's new defensive coordinator, is learning what's in the fine print.

He pays $300 each semester for the right to battle 10,000 other students for unassigned parking. Even though he has a one-year contract — the same as every other UH assistant coach — 1 percent of his gross pay goes to union dues.

His new Waikiki apartment does not including parking, forcing him to fork more money "so my car can sleep."

"I didn't know I was going to have to pay to go to work," he said, smiling.

When Glanville argued that his defense would need two preseason games to be ready, UH coach June Jones told him: "We have two preseason games — USC and Michigan State."

Still, Glanville, head coach for two National Football League teams, is where he wants to be — working with his close friend, Jones, in a sport that has become his life.

"I can't sleep at night," he said, "because I can't wait for the next day."

During a lunch with The Advertiser, Glanville spoke of why he owes his career to Jones, how he gave the boot to All-Pro cornerback Deion Sanders, and the story behind leaving football tickets for Elvis.

On nearly accepting a coaching job at Northern State University in South Dakota:

"They legally couldn't hire me until Wednesday because of equal-opportunity (procedures). On Wednesday, I'm 99 percent sure they're going to offer me the job. My wife is sitting here and my son is sitting there. I said I'm going to Aberdeen, South Dakota. My wife started crying. My son said, 'Dad, have a good time. Write me. I'll see you in a year or two.' Then the phone rang. I said, 'It's probably them. They're probably going to make an offer.' I answered it, and it was June on the phone. He said, 'Are you really going to South Dakota?' That's how the whole conversation started. ... My suitcase was packed with long underwear and other things for South Dakota. I turned it over, and I told my wife, 'I need some shorts and some flip-flops.' "

The two had not talked since Jones succeeded Glanville as the Atlanta Falcons' head coach in 1994. On the quiet period:

"If I had caller ID, I probably wouldn't have answered the phone."

On why he accepted the UH job:

"I owe June. He always came with me my second year. My first year everywhere, we always went 5-11. We were 100 percent better, but the only people who knew that were people watching film. We never scored enough. But June would always come, and we'd always score points. Jerry Glanville's team, by itself, played good and knocked your (butt) off. But we never scored enough points. June's job was to come in and score points, which he always did. The second year, we'd win 10, 11 or 12. I would never be here without him. If June Jones leaves tomorrow, I'm leaving. I'm just here to help a guy who helped me twice."

On his wife's request to reconsider:

"On the way to the airport, my wife asked me not to come. This is two days ago. I got Mouse (Davis, the assistant coach) on the phone. I said, 'You'd better call June. My wife asked me not to come.' He said, 'And you're at the airport waiting on the plane?' I said, 'Of course.' ... June said, 'What did you tell Brenda?' I said, 'That's a great thought.' And it was. And it was love that she didn't want me to leave. But when you make a promise, you go. I owe June. Without June, there's no Jerry Glanville as you know him on TV and as you know him in coaching. Without June, I'm another assistant who got a chance, who fought his (butt) off and didn't score enough points and went down the road. June made me successful."

On how Jones has changed:

"He's only changed physically. I know he's in pain (from a car accident four years ago) when he tries to stand up. ... (In 1981) we opened up against the Oilers, and I saw him throw the winning touchdown pass to Bubba Bean. I saw a guy who could do anything he wanted physically. I could tell when we were eating (recently) at Aloha Tower how much pain he was in. Mentally? Spiritually? No change."

On his renewed friendship with Jones:

"I've never had a conversation with June about anything other than football. I went to (sportscaster) Artie Wilson's house. He's a good friend of June's. People would say, 'How did it go at Artie's?' I said, 'I thanked him. He has a nice family. He'd never see me again.' They were talking about a trip to Japan. They were talking to me about things I didn't care about. ... The other things in the world? There are plenty of people to take care of those other things. That's not my assignment. With June, we've never talked on the telephone, in the car, in the room, that's not about football."

On his expectations of UH:

"I never asked about the players. It didn't matter. It had nothing to do with what I had to do. The only thing I asked (Jones) is if I had to wear a shirt with a flower on it. ... I didn't look at last year's defense. I don't know what we changed. I don't want to upset coaches who coached the scheme. I never knocked the scheme from last year. It's easy to come in here and have all of the answers when you weren't here when all of the problems were going on. I never ask my coaches, 'What the hell were you doing against LaTech?' I wouldn't say that. I'll watch LaTech, then I'll move on. ... I coached a guy who taught me one thing: 'Used to' is dead. When you learn that in coaching, you can become a good coach."

On working under Jones:

"It's kind of funny. Somebody asked me, 'June worked for you all of those years, how is it going to be working for him?' I said, 'You know what, I can't remember June ever calling me boss. I can't remember June ever working for me. He's worked with me. It's never been any other way.' The way June and I are now, I think we're all doing it together."

On meeting the players:

"In our first meeting, the only thing I stressed is, we cannot live with — we will not accept, you won't be here — if you get a penalty on third down or if we get a penalty in (the final) two minutes. We want to be No. 1 in the nation in fewest penalties on third down. People used to say, 'Jerry Glanville's teams were the most heavily penalized in the league.' On first downs, maybe. On a toss sweep, when Eric Dickerson ran out of bounds, I said, 'He ain't out of bounds until he's over the bench.' We hit him with eight people. On third down, the same play, we had our hands up. We wanted to get off the field. That's the goal: Get off the field."

On his contribution to UH:

"If we win it, it won't be because of me. It'll be because we all bought into the system. I can't break up a play. And I know I can't get a sack. ... By the time you think you're pretty important, you'll find out something else when you leave. I found out when I left Atlanta, they didn't drop football. ... (During contract negotiations) Deion (Sanders) wouldn't come in. He wanted a million dollars. He said, 'I'm done.' I said, 'Goodbye, you're history.' His agent said, 'How can you possibly do that?' I said, 'When he graduated from Florida State, they didn't drop football. They're still going, and they ain't going back, either.' "

On expectations of the UH defensive players:

"Our players will be held — and here's the word — not responsible but accountable. They will be accountable for their gap cancellation. When you're lining up here, here and here, but you're responsible for canceling the B gap, once you cancel the B gap, you can go play. The way I coach is, you have to do your accountability before you do your creativity. That's how you play fast. In three or four games, we'll be fast. You'll say, 'I thought teams got tired during the year.' We'll get faster and faster, because they'll know what they're accountable for."

On working with UH's special teams:

"I've been coaching special teams since 1968. I would never take a defensive coordinator's job in the National Football League unless I was also the special teams coach. I think they go hand in hand. I think the attitude has to be the same. Ray Perkins tried to hire me to the Giants. He said, 'I want you to be the defensive coordinator.' I said, 'I won't come unless I'm the special teams coach.' So they offered both jobs, but I didn't go. Instead, I recommended (Bill) Parcells for defense and a guy named Bill Belichick, one of my assistants, for special teams. I think those two did OK."

On UH's new practice routine:

"When practice is supposed to be over, our defensive staff will come out with all of the freshmen, and we'll go another 20 minutes. We're going to force ourselves to look at every young kid. We're going to give every young kid reps, reps, reps. When I was in pro football, practice should be over, but we wanted to ground them down to a nub. We did that to every rookie. We'll look at a freshman and we'll say, 'You know what? It's time we start moving him up.' If you don't force yourself to do those things, they sit and watch. If you let the safety learn by sitting and watching, do you know what he learns? He learns how to sit and watch. You've got to play safety to feel the dig and the post. And you have to have your coach behind you yelling, 'Here it comes!' "

On deciding to coach from the sideline during UH games:

"I've been both on the field and in the (coaches') box. I was in the box with the Detroit Lions. We had Dallas, 3-0. We got the damn ball snatched away from us with 18 seconds left. I wanted us to take a knee, and we threw a pass. Dallas intercepted and went up, 7-3. The head coach said, 'Where's Jerry?' They said, 'He's handcuffed to the table upstairs.' I was gonna kill everybody I could get my hands on."

On the season opener against two-time defending national champion Southern California:

"The more you look at them on film, the better they get. I had them shut out about five months ago. Then about three months ago, they scored twice on us. About two weeks ago, they got 21 on us. It's coming harder and harder to stop them. I told Vantz (Singletary, the defensive line coach), 'We've got to get the third light (on the scoreboard) in case they hit a hundred.' "

On USC coach Pete Carroll:

"I'm worried about Pete Carroll. He might be the only guy on the face of the Earth who can beat Hillary for president. Here's a guy who's been coaching for 28 years, had 14 jobs, never ages. He wears cuffs on his pants. He plays catch with the players during pre-game. He does everything right. Hillary can beat anybody except Pete Carroll. He should be running for president."

On his favorite football memory:

"I once had a high school team, where because of practice they all quit and they went to the big rival. We ended up with 17 kids on the team. On every fourth down, I would holler, 'Punt team.' Finally, the coach says, 'Who goes in on the punt team?' I said, 'One guy.' He said, 'Why don't you just holler his name?' We played the kids who all quit and went to the other school in Cincinnati. It rained, and we had eight inches of mud. They wanted to postpone the game until the next day. The rain is the great equalizer. We told them, 'We play tonight and if you don't, we're taking the win.' We beat them 7-6 with 17 guys. You talk about your greatest win. To beat the stars who left your team. We didn't even have a team bus. The principal said, 'You don't need a bus for 17. Take cars.' That's the fun of coaching."

On his trademark black outfits:

"We were in Los Angeles, and I was signaling (the players) as the head coach. The defensive end said to me, 'Coach, you've got to come over here and look at our sideline. We cannot find you.' I was dressed like everybody else. I said, 'You're kidding me.' He said again, 'We cannot find you. You have to wear something else.' I said, 'Well, I like black. I guess I'll have to wear black.' "

On his reputation for leaving tickets for the King:

"June did it. He wanted to leave two tickets for Elvis, and I took the heat. It was all his idea. We were driving in to practice. We had an old black Chevy pickup truck. We had the radio on, and we were trying to listen to Jerry Jeff Walker sing. The DJ came on and said, 'Elvis Presley has been spotted in Michigan working at a Burger King.' And June said — not me — 'Isn't that something?' We were playing the New England Patriots in Memphis for preseason. He said, 'We ought to leave him a couple of tickets.' Then we found out the whole halftime was dedicated to him. June says, 'You've gotta leave him tickets.' Everybody thinks it was my idea. It was June's idea. That's what makes my brother mad. He says, 'You can coach. You can clock manage better than anybody. But the day you die, all they'll talk about is Elvis. And it's all June's fault.' "