Stephen Colbert, the comedian who will replace Dave Letterman on CBS in September, provided the commencement speech at Wake Forest University’s graduation last month.
In it, the host of popular late-night show The Colbert Report joked about a tradition that students follow whenever the Wake Forest football team wins. Per Chris Moore of The ACC Sports Journal, Colbert said:
“This is a school that respects tradition. Traditions like rolling the quad with toilet paper after big wins. And this is actually an eco-friendly tradition because, looking at this season’s win-loss record, you guys saved a lot of paper.”
Demon Deacons head coach Dave Clawson wasn’t thrilled about the comment. Moore notes Clawson’s recent comments on the David Glenn Show:
“I won’t be watching his show for at least a year. You invite someone like that, and I’m sure they paid him a fairly healthy sum to be our speaker, and it was not needed and not appreciated.”
Note: According to a Wake Forest University blog post, commencement speakers are not paid.
However, Clawson acknowledged that Wake Forest football hasn’t exactly been the epitome of greatness. The team managed a 3-9 record in his first season as head coach, and the program has posted a 21-40 mark since 2010.
“He got some laughs out of it, which was his goal, but — it is what it is. He spoke the truth. We did not have a good record last year. Our students didn’t get to roll the quad as much as we want. The bottom line is that it’s our job to change that, and we’ll get that changed, and I’m fully confident that will happen. Did I like that he said it? No, but he spoke the truth. We need to win more football games here, and I’m very confident that we’ll do it.”
Seeking its first bowl appearance since 2011, Wake Forest opens the 2015 regular season on Thursday, Sept. 3, against the Elon Phoenix.
Photo: USA Today Sports