The leaders of Carroll ISD ask that we all not talk about the subject you can’t stop talking about, which is the UFO that just crashed into your backyard.
You’re not going to not talk about the UFO that crashed into your swing set and grill.
Because not only are there no UFOs in Southlake, there are no crashes.
There are no issues in Southlake. There are no problems in Southlake. There are only Christmas cards in Southlake.
Never miss a local story.
This, of course, is a lie in Southlake – and everywhere else. No one, and no place, is immune from the occasional embarrassing wreck.
Because there are real issues and real problems behind every Christmas card, for all of us. Southlake is currently dealing with one to its cherished, celebrated and revered football team.
The Carroll Dragons are in a fine mess, and now the public knows.
And not talking about said mess changes none of it, nor does it mean everything is neat and tidy.
Besides, no mortal being can turn away from watching a pristine, perfect little ’burb rocked by scandal.
Since Carroll ISD put football coach Hal Wasson on paid administrative leave, the rumor mill has nearly broken as to why the coach of their precious team is effectively out.
The decision to put Wasson on administrative leave would have been made even had the Dragons won the 2017 6A state title, according to sources. Wasson would have been put on leave even if his last state title came more recently than 2011.
Hello, Mr. Settlement.
The decision to ask him to step away while his program is under review is not about wins and losses; Wasson has an .829 winning percentage in 11 years at Carroll.
Despite the pretty figure, everyone should be skeptical of such proclamations. Winning state titles or championships of any sort always buys people time to “correct their behaviors in a positive manner, to learn from their mistakes and move forward” ... and usually fire a few assistants, too.
The decision is not about his less-than-great relationship with Carroll athletic director Darren Allman, although that never helps.
According to sources, this decision to review — i.e. dump Wasson — is not just about the head coach. The decision to review the football program — and the coach — is likely to affect more than just one or two people. People who are on Wasson’s level and higher.
This decision is about the primary color of the Dragons uniform: green.
Allman said he could not talk about this issue, nor can anyone else associated with the district.
Sources indicated Carroll ISD has concerns about the specific culture of football practices, and with how money was raised and distributed in recent years under Wasson.
The CISD’s review is expected to be released as early as this week, and while it most assuredly will be chock full of legal jargon and PR-sounding sentences, the fallout is expected to include people losing their jobs beyond just one man.
What the report will not indicate is the real sin committed by the Wasson regime: that Carroll football is no longer Carroll football. The product has staled compared to the previous standards.
Dragon Stadium is no longer packed from kickoff to final whistle. The pop that made the program so special – and nationally known – has gone flat.
Southlake and Carroll need to look beyond their own cozy bubble and see the world is different; sports are different; football is different; parents are different; kids are different. The glory days of its preposterous dominance can’t be the minimum requirements for any head coach.
Statistically, Wasson’s teams were fine. But people who watch Carroll know the Dragons are not the same. They’re no longer a threat or a brand.
Bringing back Todd Dodge, currently the head coach at Austin Westlake, doesn’t change the world.
People within the Southlake community with any sense of history lust for the return of the golden dragon, Dodge, whose Carroll teams dominated the entire state from 2000 to 2006.
Note, however, the impending removal of Wasson has nothing to do with the return of Dodge, or any potential coach.
Should this fantasy’s fantasy actually occur, he can’t be held to that same standard he established at Carroll during the first part of the century. No coach should. No one can be expected to win four out of five state titles, as Dodge did.
Eras end. Dominance fades. Demographics change. Other teams go on runs. Ask the good people of Odessa Permian how their Mojo is doing these days.
Whatever Wasson, 61, did it was enough to warrant an internal review, which rarely goes well. He’s all but out.
Not talking about all of this doesn’t change this fine mess, and the UFO that just crashed into Carroll’s backyard.
Mac Engel: @macengelprof