2010 SEC MEDIA DAYS: ROBBIE CALDWELL, COMMODORE OF OUR HEARTS

Words fail us. Words do not fail Robbie Caldwell, who we pray meets with all success at Vanderbilt, because this is the greatest performance we have ever seen at a podium. We're going to get out of the way now, and just attempt to transcribe half the things he said. If you can find video of any of this online, do it. We'll post the full transcript as soon as it's out, and try to do him justice in the meantime:

•  Opening remarks: "Man, this is awesome!"
•  On Johnson's retirement: "Tremendous opportunity for me; obviously, it was bittersweet." Bobby J is indeed in fine health, per Caldwell. None of the staff had any idea this was coming.
•  My notes at this point just read, "Bless Robbie Caldwell's heart." Endearing right off the bat, he certainly talks like an SEC head coach.
•  On his stint as the team disciplinarian:  "A lot of players never knew me except for one side nobody wanted to see."
•  Not worried about the interim tag. He bolsters this statement by bragging on a 14-2 high school baseball team he coached in the 70s.
•  On the importance of football to a young Robbie Caldwell from a broken home: "All I ever wanted to be was a head high school coach one day. My high school coaches meant the world to me"
•  He professes to like the administration at Vandy. What they think of him, we can only imagine.
•  His wife says he can only talk about football. "Not true.  I can talk about pouring concrete ... I can talk about working on a turkey farm." This is about where we start to notice: Robbie Caldwell, the interim coach who was pulled off lining the field and plopped in the head coach's chair, is crushing this.
•  On going incognito: "I got to see Coach Richt and Coach Spurrier today. They have no idea who I am."
•  More: "Last night I went to open the door for some people and I got a tip!"
•  On recruiting: "We put together our best class ever with a 2-10 record."
•  Fearless Leader asks about reinstating profanities: "You know, I'm no angel."
•  "I know y'all cain't tell it, but I do have an education." His dad called him an idiot for taking a pay cut to go coach at Furman. "And I continue to live up to his words."
•  After a brief moment talking up his hometown of Pageland, SC as the watermelon capital of the world, we get to the meat [ahem] of the matter, and this is about where we go completely off the rails, when Robbie Caldwell tells a roomful of hundreds of surly sportswriters that his first job was on the inseminating crew at a turkey farm.

•  And just like that, we're back to earth, from howls to somber silence, as he softly states, "I just hate that the world isn't going to get to know" Rajaan Bennett.
•  "Well, I'm from New York originally. You can tell by the way I talk."
•  "Did I answer your question? I get excited. Tell me."
•  Forde gets in on the fun, asking if his work on the turkey farm affected his enjoyment of Thanksgiving. In response, he steps away from the podium and unbuttons his jacket, proudly displaying his gut to the room. Howls ensue. The first spontaneous applause (or applause of any kind, come to think of it) breaks out. What on earth do the Vandy boosters think of this guy?
•  "A wild turkey's one of the smartest animals in the world; a domestic turkey's the dumbest thing."
•  On animal testing: "If I told some of these ladies what they put in that lipstick..."
•  Somehow there's a guy in the corner who didn't understand what he meant by "inseminating crew." Caldwell offers to demonstrate.
•  "I think the worst part was picking up the dead turkeys that had been out for a while."
•  Asked if going to Vandy was a cultural adjustment: "Well, I think it was a big adjustment for Vanderbilt. I try and give it a little flavor."
•  The media rep has to step in and end things. It's the first time all week a coach has run over time in the main press room. Caldwell gets an honest ovation as he exits the stage. "I'm excited about bein' here in front of you." So are we, Coach. So are we.

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