As Jon Gruden once put it, “Anything goes on any given Sunday, especially Monday Night.”
The offensive mastermind known for mind-boggling names for plays surprised some University of Tennessee math students on Monday with a clumsy cameo in an Introduction to Statistics class over Zoom.
“Do you say dah-ta or day-ta?” the Raiders head coach asked Professor Missy Morris in his affable tenor while fumbling to get his video going. “I’m a little confused. I think I can see…Nobody can see me, huh? Thank God, my wife helped me.”
Gruden’s wife, Cindy, and son, Michael, are both Tennessee graduates. His participation was part of a series, “VFL Class Crash,” in which former Volunteer Peyton Manning recently took part.
“I don’t know if (running back Ty) Chandler’s awake yet,” he joked of Vols’ senior running back.
“My hair’s looking a little wild,” Chandler replied. “Quarantine got me a little messed up.”
Hopefully the 56-year-old can nail down the fundamentals of videoconferencing in time for Thursday’s NFL Draft, which will almost certainly test some coaches’ and GMs’ technological prowess. The league conducted a glitchy dress rehearsal on Monday that had bandwidth and communication issues immediately.
“We’re getting ready for the NFL Draft and I don’t have a lot of time,” Gruden said. “I’m really sorry to interrupt, I’m a huge Tennessee fan. … Some of my best memories are right down there on Cumberland Avenue.”
In addition to family ties to the institution, Gruden began his coaching career as a graduate assistant for the Vols back in 1986. He has become somewhat of an icon among fans, who have long-desired to have him return as head coach.
Professor Morris even showed off her “Spider 2 Y Banana” tee-shirt, which was a play call and infamous moment on “Monday Night Football”.