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The Madera Tribune

Fed up with Red Line critics of coaches

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webmaster | 11/21/12

This letter is in response to a Red Line caller’s message that was printed Nov. 20. The caller began by complaining, “How much did it cost to send the team (Madera High) down to get whipped in a playoff game?”

As a former head football coach and a current assistant football coach in Chowchilla, I can tell you that Madera High received 20 percent of the gate revenue for participating in this playoff game. Dinuba High received 20 percent as well, and then the CIF (sanctioning body for California’s high school sports) collected the remaining 60 percent. So to answer the caller’s question, it probably didn’t cost Madera High much, if anything at all, to drive down to Dinuba.

The caller then asks for the firing of Coach McKinney and the athletic director of Madera High. My question to the caller is, “Have you ever spoken personally to Coach McKinney or the A.D.? Have you ever considered the hours that he and his staff put in for almost no pay to help raise up quality young men in our community? If you don’t like his playing calling or strategies, then have you ever sat in on film study sessions on Saturday to discover why he is making those calls?

Specifically, what defensive front does Dinuba run? What coverage will they use against Madera’s offense? What are Dinuba’s run-pass tendencies on 3rd down and short? How many times over the last four games has Dinuba elected to run a fake punt?” You see, you just cannot anonymously spew out ignorance in the public domain and expect it to fall on deaf ears. Unless you meet personally with Coach McKinney to air your grievances, put in the time to see what he and his staff do and what they have to deal with, then you really don’t have much right to call for his firing in our local newspaper.

No one pulls up a lawn chair and watches you at your job site, offering our opinions through a megaphone the whole time, and then publicly (and anonymously) call for your ouster when you make one or two (or even multiple) mistakes.

Therefore, why do it to a quality man such as Coach McKinney? Similar comments were made recently on the Red Line regarding Madera South Coach Donnegan, and I just can’t let it slide by anymore without comment.

I know enough of both coaches that they won’t take the time to write and rebut this nonsense.

However, I have had enough of this Red Line and the “freedom” it allows callers to make false and inflammatory comments regarding good people without posting a name. To me this is cowardice. My name is clearly printed below, and I stand by what I’m writing.

John Henson,


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