Steve Spurrier managed to grab a couple of headlines Monday afternoon at SEC Media Days, even though he won’t be on site for his part in the annual pilgrimage to Hoover, Ala.
Spurrier announced on Monday that his autobiography, “Head Ball Coach,” will be released on Aug. 30. Later that evening, he joined The Paul Finebaum Show with co-author Buddy Martin, who’s in Hoover to discuss their work.
Just as he’d done every other year, Spurrier opened his Media Days spot with an assessment of the previous season. Naturally, his account of the final months at South Carolina was brutally honest. Not that we’d expect anything less.
“I thought I had one more season in me last year, but I didn’t. I did what I could. It was inevitable that I couldn’t reach the team and I did a lousy job of putting that team together,” Spurrier said. “That’s what a head coach is supposed to do, he’s supposed to put the coaches and players together to be successful and I was finished at that time. That’s why I felt them at mid-season.”
When Spurrier stepped down last October, the Gamecocks were 2-4, sitting last in the SEC East at 0-4. The only win under interim head coach Shawn Elliott came just days after Spurrier’s retirement in a 19-10 win over Vanderbilt.
“I was hoping they could have a turnaround, but it didn’t quite happen,” Spurrier said. “But my mistake was not going out in 2014 after we beat Miami. I guess we all make mistakes sometimes.”
Finebaum, who wrote a forward in the book, asked about Spurrier’s process with Martin.
“I don’t try to tell people that I out-worked everybody … I know I’m not smarter people either, so I can’t say I’m smarter, I think I do have some common sense and I think I learned a lot from other successful people, not only coaches but philosophers and guys who write things like that,” Spurrier said. “Really, the kind of coach I became, it really happened at Duke University.”
Martin, a longtime writer, columnist and radio host, has written several books.
“This was my favorite, but also my most difficult, because he was an important figure and he knows what he wants in his book,” Martin said, “And it is his book, let me make that point. It was his book and his words. That was the goal – his voice, and he worked extremely hard on this book.”