Ryan Mallett to be kind of jerky. But as long as he was going to lead Big Blue to a bunch of wins fans would've looked past whatever misgivings he may have had in Ann Arbor.
Mallett's stay in Ann Arbor didn't last long, and what it seemed everyone knew was true. New coach Rich Rodriguez didn't want Mallett. What no one knew was that outgoing coach Lloyd Carr told Jim Mallett, Ryan's father, that Mallett should leave.
Jim went into detail about Mallett's Michigan exit and choice of going to play for Bobby Petrino at Arkansas in a story in the Boston Herald.
“At the Capital One Bowl, we were trying to smooth things out, and we talked to Coach Carr,” Jim Mallett, Ryan’s dad, said. “I asked him, ‘Coach, next to my dad, you’re the classiest person I’ve ever been around. What would you do if Ryan was your son? He said, ‘If I was in that situation, with a different offense, he needs to leave.’ ”
“Ryan’s the one who called (Rich Rod),” Jim Mallett continued. “He said, “Can I talk about the offense?’ And then he told me, ‘Daddy, (Rodriguez) never looked me in the eye.’ He never visited with the family, he didn’t talk to us. I never met the man. But hey, it wasn’t a fit. Let’s move on.”
“Bobby Petrino was the polar opposite of Lloyd Carr, who is the warmest, sweetest man,” Debbie Mallett said. “Petrino was all business. That was a turn-off for me. I was used to Coach Carr. I knew Ryan wanted to be there, but I was opposed to Coach Petrino. So, I said, “Get me Brian Brohm’s parents’ phone number (because he played for Petrino at Louisville). So, I explained who I was and said, ‘If you had to do it over again, would you want your son to play for Bobby Petrino?’ (Brohn’s parent) said, ‘Hell, yeah. If you got soft ears, you’ll hear some ugly words. But we were actually pissed he wasn’t staying Atlanta (so Brohn could play for him).’ I said, ‘What else can I say?’ After the season, I wrote (Petrino) a note and said, ‘If any parent wants my phone number, feel free to give it to them.’
We all know how everything turned out. Rodriguez had three uneventful seasons at Michigan, Mallett is going to the NFL, and Carr and Petrino look pretty good in this whole mess.