Washington State coach Mike Leach has a reputation for being somewhat of an open book at his news conferences, but he took that to another level on Wednesday.
Leach penned a column for The Players’ Tribune detailing five thoughts (of varying lengths) that have nothing to do with football.
The topics ranged from Leach’s hot takes on pizza crust to what he sees as the future of the law profession (Leach has a law degree from Pepperdine).
But perhaps most interestingly, Leach admits he’s infatuated with raccoons. He says he had a pet raccoon growing up and knows an “inordinate amount” about the animals.
I named my pet raccoon after one of my favorite book characters, Bilbo Baggins. We got Bilbo when I was pretty young. I grew up out in the country in Wyoming, and there was a guy near us who had a baby raccoon he wanted to get rid of, so my family took it in. I will say Bilbo did a fabulous job as a house pet. Got along great with the dog, got along great with the cats and he usually got along with the people too. The one thing about Bilbo is that he loved pots and pans. Pots and pans were his favorite thing. Raccoons are drawn to shiny objects. Bilbo could climb really well — raccoons look cumbersome but they can get wherever they want — and he used to go into our kitchen and sneak into the cupboard. He could get the door open because raccoon hands are similar to human hands and their feet are similar to human feet. There’s a lot of dexterity. Really smart animals. So anyway Bilbo would get on the counter and I’d see him staring at those pots and pans, just captivated by their shininess. Then he’d start knocking them around, interested in the way they clanged together. Every now and then the house would be quiet and suddenly there’d be a crash! And there Bilbo would be in the kitchen, hanging off the cupboard above the sink, just knocking the pans out so he could play with them. Interestingly, he didn’t care for glass at all. Never messed with the cups or the plates. The only way those would break was if they were in the way of a shiny pan. Great pet.
Leach’s story about Bilbo continues from there, and it even has a somewhat wholesome ending.
The whole article is worth the read to get more of Leach’s opinions on things such as Hawaii and the movie Talladega Nights. But Leach owning and caring for a raccoon as a child might be his best anecdote yet.