Allegations of a toxic culture have rocked the University of Minnesota football program and The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz has plenty of thoughts.
EXCLUSIVE: Former University of Minnesota football players describe a toxic culture under head coach P.J. Fleck in interviews with @FOS — including allegations of strenuous workouts were used as punishments in violation of NCAA guidelines. https://t.co/Jp7Lmj4kDe— A.J. Perez (@byajperez) July 26, 2023
Let’s just rip the band-aid right off — P.J. Fleck is a bozo. At least, that’s according to Pablo. Pablo is trying to figure out what level of scandal this story really is — is it a Northwestern scandal? Is it an Iowa scandal? Is this a Penn State scandal? What type of scandal are we talking about here? Luckily for Pablo, The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz P.J. Fleck expert Lucy Rohden is here to explain it all!
Lucy points out that it seems like every year we get a hit piece on Fleck calling him crazy, toxic and a cult leader. Lucy has a newsflash — yeah, he always has been. She says she read the newest story as was like, “Yeah, that’s P.J. Fleck.” He’s such a weird dude. Lucy notes that this story definitely is following on the heels of the Northwestern hazing story and riding its coattails a bit, but she doesn’t think it’s nearly that severe. She notes that there were definitely some things that weren’t OK, like the Fleck Bank (how many Schrute Bucks are the minimum deposit?) allowing some players to use their Fleck currency to allegedly get out of things like failed drug tests and other violations of team rules. But how stable are Fleck coins?
While Pablo seems incredulous at the concept of Fleck coins or whatever you want to call them, Lucy points out that this is very P.J. Fleck as he loves to brand EVERYTHING. She notes that if you go to the University of Minnesota stadium there are oars everywhere because of his Row the Boat catchphrase. Lucy thinks calling Fleck a cult leader is an entirely accurate description. And the perfect example of that is requiring his players to give him a standing ovation when he entered a room.
Pablo keys in on the notion of players doing good things to get out of bad things, which he says is a key component to a more crypto vibe. He says there’s a dark money aspect to this, something a little more deliberate than the coupon book you might give to your parents as a kid that includes free hugs. Lucy says P.J. Fleck is absolutely a crypto guy, you just take one look at him and go yup, 100 percent. But what she thinks is interesting is about the article is the notion that if you do good you get some Fleck coin but if you do bad you get punished with extra exercise, which is something the entire Minnesota athletics program got in trouble for a few years back.
One of Jessica’s favorite things was all the acronyms Fleck made his players memorize, which gave her Dabo Sweeney vibes. One of them was F.I.S.T — family invested same time, so keep it tight. Which begs the question — what does that even mean? All of these acronyms lead Roy to come up with one of his own, S.A.D. – stupid and dumb. And no, he wasn’t burning Pablo, but rather the binder of P.J. Fleck acronyms.
As Jessica says, put it on a T-shirt!
Meanwhile, the Cooligans joined the show to discuss the Women’s World Cup ...
“This is an absolute failure from the coach so far…if you only make one sub in 90 minutes, you get fired from a Jersey Mike’s.”— Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz (@LeBatardShow) July 27, 2023
The @SoccerCooligans stop by with a #WorldCup update and a few coaching pointers for Vlatko Andonovski.
Check out the breakdown of Thursday’s show below.
Local Hour: S.A.D.
- P.J. Fleck’s acronyms make Roy acrimonious. Pablo pushes a Japanese toilet agenda and offers to teach Chris Cote to use a bidet. The show reminisces on their prom experiences.
The Big Suey: US Women’s Team Goes Dutch
- How does NY Knicks president Leon Rose get away with not talking to the media? Then Christian Polanco and Alexis Guerreros of The Cooligans podcast join the show to discuss the Women’s World Cup.
Hour 1: Stupid Casual
- A Zapruder-level analysis of the Stugotz photo with The Golics and Justin Tuck. Thursday Thunder rumbles right into this week’s poll update, which reveals the secret to Chris Cote’s marriage. Then Payne Lindsay joins the show to break down the testimony of a former Air Force intelligence officer claiming the U.S. government has recovered non-human “biologics” from alleged UFO crash sites.
Hour 2: Sizzler with the Boys
- Who’s winning and losing the summer right now? Tony’s streak is coming to an end this weekend in Key West. Then the All-Star weekend crew puts together their Top Five Salt Lake moments.
Postgame Show: Perverted Loofah
- What are some of the dumb things that we do all the time?
Watch more below!
Check out the Le Batard and Friends YouTube page for more and subscribe to the show on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. You can also follow the show on Twitter @LeBatardShow.
THURSDAY THUNDER PARLAY PICKS
Put your knowledge to the test. Sign up for DraftKings and experience the game inside the game.