Many FSU alumni issue negative reactions to Kendal Briles hire
Tennessee may have dodged a bullet by not hiring offensive coordinator Kendal Briles.
That’s safe to assume after reading some of the emails Florida State received following the hiring of the football program’s new offensive coordinator. Briles, formerly of Houston and FAU (where he worked under Lane Kiffin), is most known for his connection to his father Art Briles and the scandal involving the Baylor football program.
Baylor, both the football program, the administration and to some extent local law enforcement, has been accused of allowing violence against women to go unpunished in an effort to help the football program under Art Briles. During that time, Kendal served on the staff, which leads many to believe he likely had to have known some of the issues behind closed doors at Baylor.
However, when Baylor ultimately fired Art Briles when the allegations against his program were made public, Kendal was kept on staff the following season. Kendal Briles has not been out of work since that time, with his latest stop coming in Tallahassee.
According to emails sent to Florida State, acquired by Matt Baker of the Tampa Bay Times, many FSU alumni aren’t pleased with the message the school is sending by hiring Briles from Houston.
One FSU fan wrote the following email to university president John Thrasher:
“As a survivor of sexual assault on FSU’s campus, it makes me ill that such a hire is even rumored. I cannot and will not defend it. I refuse to support a program that would allow this kind of association on its campus and again with its football team. Please don’t break my heart by making me give up rooting for my school, and the young men striving so hard to make their better way while wearing the garnet and gold.”
Another sent this letter to Thrasher:
“Simply put, we are — or should be — better than this… I get that we play big time football and it’s a big business — and I love watching the team every Saturday in the fall. But, in my opinion, I’d rather go 5-7 again next year without Briles than (maybe) win an extra game or two with him and take all the baggage that comes with him.”
For a program eager to return to former glory, it is fair to ask if FSU is looking the other way in an attempt to get back to the top of the ACC and national standings while in-state rival Florida appears to be on the rise in Gainesville.