Former Utah Jazz great Karl Malone is not happy with his alma mater, Louisiana Tech University, after the school’s football team won’t be playing in the postseason following botched bowl negotiations.
Malone went on a Twitter rant slamming the Ruston, La., university, Sunday night because the Bulldogs won’t be headed to a bowl despite going 9-3. Teams are eligible to play in a bowl if they amass six or more victories, provided they are not on NCAA probation.
Lousiana Tech was invited to play in the Independence Bowl, but the school’s athletic director asked for more time from bowl officials to make a decision, believing he could get the Bulldogs into a more prestigious bowl, according to the Associated Press. The Independence Bowl denied the request for more time and Louisiana Tech missed out on a bowl opportunity.
Louisiana Tech athletic director Bruce Van De Velde said he didn’t turn down the Independence Bowl.
"Nobody turned a bowl bid down," he said. "We asked for more time to vet two other opportunities that we had that we felt good about."
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Jack Anderes, the bowl’s chairman, begged to differ.
"Before we made another deal we called them back. We said, 'We're still willing to have you at the bowl, but need to know fairly quickly.' So we gave them a deadline and they didn't call us back until way later than that. If you don't call us back, that's a 'No.' And we made another deal so we'd have a quality bowl team."
The fact that Louisiana Tech won’t be going bowling has angered Malone, the most successful athlete to come out of the university.
“I am Bulldog to the core, I am heart broken and embarrassed that our university would do this to Tech Nation. To our football and staff this is exactly what is wrong with our university. Now it's time to get former athletes to run our program. I'm 6"9 and not hard to find,” Malone wrote on his Twitter account.
The Mailman continued his rant, with the Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer tearing into Van De Velde.
“Wouldn't it be nice to hire a person doing it for university, and not somebody doing it for a bigger and better job in their mind? Whoever made this desicision [sic,] have the balls to tell the guys why. As one alumni of LaTech I want to know why,” Malone said.
The Mailman continued to advocate for former Bulldogs to run the athletics department, although he didn’t specifically state that he’s interested in the job.
“TechNation what I have been saying for a long time,start hiring former tech athletes to get the pride back into The university and athletics,” he said. “To Bleed tech Blue, you got to be Tech.”