(CBS) Tim Beckman brought no shortage of embarrassment to Illinois during his reign as football coach, which came to an end Friday when he was fired after an external review confirmed allegations of player mistreatment by him. Certainly, forcing players to play through injuries and threatening to pull scholarships was the worst of it, but there was much more before that.
Here’s a look at some of Beckman’s most embarrassing moments.
Dec. 9, 2011: Beckman talks about lasagna at his introductory press conference
OK, Tim. The below is a compilation with some editing involved, but it pretty much paints the picture of his bizarre introductory press conference.
July 2012: Beckman, assistants recruit Penn State players in State College after Sandusky scandal penalties are handed out
In a bad look for Illinois, Beckman and assistant coaches descended upon the Penn State campus and recruited Nittany Lions players to transfer to Champaign after sanctions the NCAA levied sanctions in the aftermath of the Jerry Sandusky scandal. Other schools took similar measures, but the Illini coaches were among the most aggressive and visible.
October 2012: Beckman caught using chewing tobacco during game
Illinois reported a secondary violation after TV cameras caught Beckman using chewing tobacco on the sidelines during a game against Wisconsin. It’s on the list of the NCAA’s banned substances for coaches to use during games. ‘That’s a bad habit of mine,” Beckman told reporters after the game. ”I apologize for that. I guess it’s the stress, but there’s no excuse for that, and that’ll be stopped.”
November 2012: Beckman gets tangled up with ref
No explanation is needed here. Just watch.
2012-2014: Beckman makes plenty of curious coaching decisions
You can basically take your pick here.
2013: Beckman makes up a weird acronym, part 1
Beckman terms “WINT” as the team’s slogan — it stands for “Whatever is necessary today.” He often runs with it in interviews.
Feb. 4, 2015: Beckman asks the media to be more positive
After asking the media to be more positive about the Illinois program during a signing day press conference, Beckman joined the Boers and Bernstein Show and doubled down on his belief. It turned out to be puzzling.
“I’m not going after the media,” Beckman said. “I’m asking for help. I didn’t go after the media one bit. I was just saying if we could all be in this together, that’s all I said. Let’s be in this thing together. Let’s build this thing together into a championship program. Let’s talk as much as we can on trying to build it together.
“Why can’t we talk about some of the positive things?”
Making this all the more funny was that in follow up conversation after the interview, Beckman appeared to have no idea that he came off as a complete goofball.
July 2015: Beckman makes up a weird acronym, part 2
Beckman explains that “Oskee” isn’t just a battle cry for the Illini, but it also stands for something else.
“We use the word Oskee not just because of the word Oskee or that it’s a battle cry of the University of Illinois. But it also stands for something. That stance that we use that word for is our success equals the knowledge of being — the K, the knowledge, of being a great student-athlete on and off the football field. Understanding how to be supportive. How to understand to be successful in the classroom.
The E stands for effort, giving all-out effort in everything you do each and every day. And then the last E stands for energy. Energy, being a positive influence on the people around you. Having that belief and that system as being a teammate, being a brother, the band of brothers.”
Aug. 28, 2015: Beckman is fired for mistreating his players
An external review found that Beckman deterred injury reporting and attempted to influence medical decisions during his tenure. Beckman was also found to have threatened to take away scholarships from players in the spring semester of their senior year, after their commitment to the football team was done.