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Open Letter to the Media

I can't remember, for the life of me, exactly when this happened. Unfortunately, the Web wasn't indexed very well back in those days, and Google doesn't seem to have a record of it, either.
-bigdan, 04/2007
In the past seven days my website has come under extremely close media attention for the unique perspective I have brought to Division I basketball, and from this media attention has emerged a viewpoint totally contrary to reality. Due in part to this frenzy over my website, this past week has been very difficult for Coach Byrdsong and his family. What started as a completely innocent venture to entertain and inform basketball fans around the world has been turned against Coach Byrdsong and the NU men's basketball family. My words have been used as an example of the coaching staff's alleged incompetence, not to mention painting the picture of myself as an ingrate.

Here is where the controversy lies.

While our team was in San Diego this November, we were alotted three hours out of our four day trip to go sight-seeing (we did not "wander" as reported). During this brief visit, one of our freshman out of sheer curiosity, stopped into a place that he shouldn't have and normally wouldn't have been; also cited was little Ricky Jr.'s rambunctiousness on the bus the day before our Indiana road trip. Through some clever phrasing, these two isolated instances (written almost 3 months apart) were used to malign Coach Byrdsong, and subsequently led to the conclusion that his motto must be "out of control."

In my three years as a member of the NU men's basketball family there has never been a moment that I have doubted who was in control. At all times, Coach Byrdsong commands respect, demands our full attention and effort in every practice, game, and class and above all else requires that we conduct ourselves as gentlemen. We have all been taught to represent our program as we would our own families. That one freshman made a mistake, did something he shouldn't have and got his camera stolen as a result. I made mention of the incident not to justify what he did, but rather to illustrate a good example of poetic justice.

My quip about little Ricky Jr. was also misconstrued. My Life on the Inside series is written in a very satirical manner, and is authored as if it were going to be read by a group of my friends. Little Ricky is a cute kid who, during the incident cited, was doing what all kids his age do--he was having fun. So he got on my nerves once...big deal--all kids get on your nerves once in a while--my brothers (9 and 7 years old) sure do. To say that little Ricky's actions are indicative of a larger problem is preposterous. Unfortunately, because of my comment his life has also been adversely affected and it is for this that I am particularly remorseful. Had I imagined in my wildest dreams that little Ricky would get dragged into this mess as a result of just one sentence mentioning him, I would not have even begun to incorporate him into the story.

I never realized the turmoil one little sentence could possibly inflict upon a family as it has upon the Byrdsongs. I never before now fully understood the reality of the phrase "the pen is mightier than the sword", but I know now what power the written word holds. What saddens me most is that the men's basketball program is now viewed by some as something that it is most certainly not--"out of control." For this I offer my sincerest, heartfelt apologies to Coach Byrdsong, his family, our alumni, boosters and fans for the turmoil that I have caused in this program. I never intended to tarnish our program's fine reputation.

-Daniel L. Kreft

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