Stranger Things: Mike Leach’s Netflix Recommendations At SEC Media Days

ATLANTA- If there was one coach in the conference that could care less about impressing anybody sitting in the crowd, it’s Mississippi State’s Mike Leach. After Greg Sankey gave him an almost five minute introduction, the head coach took the stage and decided to skip the opening statement, heading straight into questions, which included Netflix recommendations.

It’s not everyday that we get a head coach that doesn’t care about the way he comes off towards the media, because he’s just acting normal. The quirky coach that can spout off Civil War history like a play sheet, showed up in what he called his finest pair of khakis, waiting for the chance to get this over with. But it’s not as if he’s bored, he just doesn’t care about what people think. This was obvious during his three minute Netflix recommendation statement.

As for not having an opening statement, Leach thought it was pointless, knowing he’d be answering the questions again after laying everything out for ten minutes.

“I hate opening statements. And I don’t see the point of it. Instead of thinking of some flowery opening statement & then a number of people ask questions that are in my opening statement, we’ll cut out the middle man.”

But it was at this point in the conversation with the media that Mike Leach was asked about his Netflix recommendation, after Greg Sankey called him an avid watcher during his introduction. It was one of those moments that made Leach comparable to every media member sitting in front of him. But, he wasn’t prepared to give us just one show to watch, he had a list.

“Yeah, I wish I’d watched more Netflix lately. And I haven’t. Somebody said I need to watch “The Terminal List,” which I haven’t watched it yet. I guess the hidden gem, which I think I said it last year, “Operation Odessa,” that documentary, you need to watch that about these international criminals that try to buy a submarine for Pablo Escobar. That’s worth watching.

“I wish I could tell you I watched more Netflix,” Leach added. “I haven’t watched a lot lately. During the season, it’s good to watch to kind of get your head straight. I’m up to date on “Better Call Saul,” I’m up to date on “Yellowstone.”

But it was his players that got him into the ongoing trend around the country, with one particular show that he’s having trouble preparing for the final season.

“Yeah, I’ll tell you, that’s part of it. The kids got me into “Stranger Things.” I’m certainly not ready for this season, I’m about halfway through. I don’t know. If you guys have any good recommendations, I could probably use ’em. So I guess I’ll defer to the numbers here.”

Leach was also told to watch a show called ‘Severance’ which is about mind control, leading to the head coach telling the reporter to not try any funny stuff on him. If you combined the Michael Scott character with a college football genius, you’d get Mike Leach. That’s the only way I know how to compare the Mississippi State coach.

Show recommendations weren’t the only thing on the mind of Mike Leach, especially when he was asked which side he leaned toward regarding the Nick Saban and Jimbo Fisher feud. It was a simple answer, but the intentions were clear that something needed to be fixed.

“I think they both kind of illustrate the frustration of how things are right now. It’s not sustainable, so something’s going to change. We haven’t defined exactly what is an amateur, a student-athlete, as opposed to a professional.”

In the past it became a running joke of Mike Leach talking about a 64-team playoff, which was all fun and games until commissioners around college football decided to start loading up conferences with as many teams as possible. Now he’s not looking too bad, especially when he was asked about that number today in Atlanta.

“That may be a conference championship you’re referring to. I don’t know. At some point, I mean, I’m beginning to lose track of what’s a league and what’s a conference, what’s a division, you know?

“The more the merrier, I guess. I’m not against any of it,” Leach added. “As far as playoffs, there’s a lot of models. My thoughts on the playoffs are well-documented.”

So at the end of the day, if you had the privilege of sitting through a Mike Leach press conference, hopefully you took notes on which shows to catch up on. If not, you won’t have time for it anyway once the season begins.

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Written by Trey Wallace

Wallace started covering the SEC in 2012, as the conference landscape was beginning to change. Prior to his time in Knoxville, Wallace worked in Nashville for The Read Optional, where he first produced content that garnered national attention. His passion for sports is evident in his work and has led him to break some of college football’s biggest stories. His social media reach and natural podcast proficiency continue to make Wallace one of SEC’s most trusted sources.

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