Jenkins Leaves Town
John Jenkins' offseason started off
bad enough when the UH administration decided not to re-
newhis roll over contract, leav-
ing him three years until he would
have to renegotiate...or leave.
It was a loud message, two
back to back losing seasons were not
looked on favorably by a school that
pays dearly to keep its high profile
athletic department going.
Jenkins started his Cougar
career with Jack Pardee, the new
head coach, after the violation-
ended tenure of Coach Bill Yeoman.
After three winning seasons and
one Aloha Bowl trip, Coach Pardee
left for the Houston Oilers. Jenkins
was given the head coaching position.
Jenkins started with a 10-1
season that made the Run and Shoot
offense look unbeatable. Unfortu-
their education. a recently fired assistant coach, had
Tracy Good told The Daily harassed them in order to get them
Cougar that the team had practiced to bring these allegations forward.
(and been in meetings) for over the "Some of these guys were out to get
20 hours a week the NCAA allows,
"You ate, slept, drank football. You
barely had enough time to eat or
sleep. Practice is necessary, but you
don't have to go to extremes."
Jenkins denied the allegations, "We have never done over
18.5 hours. This includes meetings
and practices. As a matter of fact, I've
got written statements and records
from all the players indicating that
it's well below the 20 hour limit"
Coach Jenkins fired because they
don't like him," said Tait.
The NCAA was ready to
start their investigation, but they
claimed that the violations were
minor ones. As if on cue, Staggs
released tons of paper records that
he held copied during his tenure al
I )H. This included alleged payment
for classes at Houston Community
College to lure a student to UH.
Staggs worked for Jenkins
Some players claimed that as a graduate assistant, and later as a
they hadbeenblackmailed into sign- receiver's coach, and he claimed he
ing those papers. had changed student records for
Lawrence Mouton claimed Jenkins. "Do you really believe he
that he was promised a scholarship, has any respect for the NCAA laws?"
but upon arrival, no scholarship was said Staggs.
available. "I've been really hurt by
nately, the Cougars were still on this program," said Mouton. "They
probation, and they couldn't prove bring in a lot of walk-ons and tell you
their prowess in a bowl game. The all these things to keep you here."
next year, the Cougars faltered, as
the defensive and offensive lines
seemed to leak like sieves. Games
against nationally-ranked teams like
Miami and Michigan turned into all
Jenkins' nonchalant attitude about losses and run-up-the-
score tactics against teams like SMU
and Eastern Washington angered
many, including alumni. The loss to
still-rebuilding SMU may have been
one of the final straws.
Jenkins continued to deny
any wrong doing, but we may never
know the full story. Jenkins announced on April 30th that he would
Jenkins disputed this claim resign his position as head coach,
also. "No one in the country tells a ending six years of the Run and
player, 'if you come in, we'll give Shoot.
you a scholarship.'"
Then a new allegation
popped up. It was claimed that por-
into game footage, just to keep things
interesting. The National Organization for Women called for Jenkins'
Some were beginning to
Jenkins and new Athletic
Director Bill Carr made the announcement, deciding that a resignation would be best to reduce the
severity of a possible NCAA probation. (It was rumored that UH might
take the 'death penalty', a complete
shut down of the football program)
Jenkins settled for two years of pay
and a health plan.
Jenkins had a meeting with
question the sources behind the al
In April, 1993, The Daily legations, mostly coming from un
Cougarpublished a series of reports happy former athletes and a myste- his players, telling them to, "keep
alleging Jenkins had violated sev- rious unnamed coach. Reporters your heads up, keep fighting and
eral NCAA rules. Former players questioned Jeff Tait, a former line- remember me." Then a few mo-
had come forward, including Tracy backer. He said the word 'pornogra- ments later a teary-eyed Jenkins told
Good, Tyler Mucho, Tim Woods and phy' was a little harsh, as the clips a press conference, "I can't tell you
Jeff Tait. They complained about were short shots of women in biki- how much I loved the experience
longpractices,includingillegalman- nis, or maybe with their tops off. and all the great Houston Cougars."
datory summer practices, broken Several former and current He gave the "Cougar Paw"
promises, and a lack of help with athletes claimed that Steven Staggs, sign, and left. -Michael Edwards