It took about 30 seconds for Texas Tech coach Tim Tadlock to get a smile out of Jim Schlossnagle.
That’s about right for those two.
“I consider us great friends, for sure,” Schlossnagle said.
The TCU coach could be seen smiling or shaking his head regularly any time Tadlock spoke during a press conference Friday at the College World Series featuring the coaches of the four teams playing Sunday, including Coastal Carolina’s Gary Gilmore, in his rookie visit, and Florida’s Kevin O’Sullivan, in his fifth.
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It started with Tadlock’s opening statement:
“Got some great staffs with these guys, great programs that do a good job. I think we all caught a glimpse of Coach Gilmore’s grand slam down there. It was a really neat moment for his program. The other two guys, kind old hat for them, and we’ll sit up here and try to learn something from them.”
Coach Tadlock, hiding behind the country drawl.
TCU coach Jim Schlossnagle, reacting to a press conference line from Texas Tech coach Tim Tadlock
The teasing of Schlossnagle and O’Sullivan drew laughs from the audience and coaches.
Schlossnagle came back: “Coach Tadlock, hiding behind the country drawl.”
Schlossnagle and Tadlock, whose teams meet at 2 p.m. Sunday in their CWS openers, have been kidding each other a long time.
Schlossnagle said he tried to hire Tadlock 20 years ago.
“I was recruiting coordinator at Tulane. He was running a great junior college at Grayson [County College in Denison],” Schlossnagle said. “I think he said yes for about 12 hours, then he changed his mind.”
Combined, TCU coach Jim Schlossnagle’s and Texas Tech coach Tim Tadlock’s teams are 268-110 (.709) in the past three seasons with two Big 12 regular-season titles, two Big 12 tournament titles and three College World Series appearances.
It might have meant a lot more laughs.
Tadlock had more at the press conference. One of his best came at the end. Each coach was asked what they remembered most from their first visits to Omaha, and Tadlock brought up 2010 when he was an assistant with Oklahoma and one particular night he was in the third-base box at Rosenblatt Stadium.
“I’m not sure the lightning meter was working,” he said. “We played a game, a couple of games, one that was really long and there was a lot of lightning. I thought to myself: ‘If there’s a place to go, this is where I want to go — right here in this third-base box.’ ”
The room was laughing.
“I’m dead serious,” he said. “Old Rosenblatt, last year, just get me right here. This would be good.”
Schlossnagle, with a big smile, was next. But he knew the drill around Tadlock.
“You really want me to follow that?” he said.
It wouldn’t have been the first time.