Tony Dungy is working on the Lord’s behalf

Dungy has announced he’s going to be staying with the Colts for another year, despite a lot of speculation that he was going to retire. But check out the ESPN headline from the main page:

Dungy Can’t Quit Colts

Is that a reference to Brokeback Mountain for the notoriously anti-gay coach?

Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but it seems like a strange turn of phrase for the Disney company. It doesn’t appear anywhere in the story.


12 Responses to “Tony Dungy is working on the Lord’s behalf”

  1. zachary Says:

    “you know how much me and the girls like fish” i think dungy said that though. perhaps brokeback mountain is actually loosely based on his life.

  2. matt Says:

    i think jerry is on to something. oftentimes, the only liberties that a writer gets to take is the headline. and they particularly enjoy the freedom since they don’t have to back it up or explain it like they would in a story. at least that’s how it worked in high school journalism

  3. Kenny Says:

    No idea how ESPN is structured, but in my limited journalism experience, the actual writers of the story didn’t write most of the headlines.

    At the State News, headlines were typically written by copy editors. Sometimes with suggestions from the writer sometimes with basically zero interaction. It’s done this way for a variety of reasons, among them because when the writer finishes and hands in their story they don’t know for sure where it’s going in the paper or how much room there will be for a headline. So it is up to the copy editor to work with the page designers in terms of how much space the headline can take up, while still providing a head that describes the article in whatever space is available.

    I suppose it is possible that the headline writer was trying to make a discreet editorial comment. Especially given that the medium is the internet where space limitations while existent are not as severe. I would guess that it was more likely inadvertent. It will be interesting to see if ESPN adjusts it if they start hearing from readers.

    Note: I just actually went to and clicked the article, the actual headline there is “Dungy to coach Colts at least one more season”. So the “can’t quit” line is strictly on the front page in there little newsbox that they use, which if I had to speculate is given even less editorial review. So i think it is most likely that someone had to write a headline that fit into that little box, wrote that without thinking of brokeback, and nobody caught it.

  4. sloan Says:

    you just wanted to bring up your recognition as all-state sports columnist. go ahead, take a bow.

  5. sloan Says:

    (that comment was to matt, who was a high school award winner. kenny was a writer at state. kind of confusing. that’s what happens when your blog gets such heavy comment traffic.)

  6. sloan Says:

    also, keno’s right, it was probably inadvertent. but still interesting in my mind.

    the head could have been “Dungy Will Be Back” or “Dungy Sticks With Colts” or “Dungy Not Retiring.”

    “can’t quit” just seems like a weird phrase.

  7. sloan Says:

    deadspin apparently agrees with me….

  8. Kenny Says:

    in a weird coincidence, apparently Heath Ledger is dead.

  9. zachary Says:

    also, the lions let go sean rogers. yay team!

  10. broseph Says:

    they did? fantastic.

  11. matt Says:

    he will sack kitna next year at least 12 times

  12. The only thing better than self-promotion « a robot, piece of sloan Says:

    […] just realized that the uber-popular blog The Big Lead wrote about my Tony Dungy post. About three weeks […]

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