At a time when many of college football’s best draft-eligible players are drawing criticism for sitting out bowl games to preserve their health, Houston Cougars head coach Major Applewhite took a different approach following Ed Oliver’s decision to skip Houston’s bowl game.
Speaking with reporters on Sunday, Applewhite threw his full support behind Oliver’s decision not to play in the Armed Forces Bowl and instead prepare himself for the 2019 NFL Draft.
Houston coach Major Applewhite on DT Ed Oliver’s decision to skip bowl pic.twitter.com/7UonoGzGjd
— Joseph Duarte (@Joseph_Duarte) December 2, 2018
It’s not often to hear someone in a powerful position speak like this in favor of the player. Applewhite’s points about Oliver wanting to accomplish all of his goals, including putting himself in position to be in the best position for potential earning power, are all on point.
This statement of support also would seem to squash any talk that these two men are still at odds following the odd jacket incident a few weeks back.
As more star players who want to protect their draft status and health make the decision to skip a bowl game or the alter half of a season, hopefully, more coaches openly support their players in the decision.