A new book has hit the market. It’s called Spygate: The Untold Story. Do yourself a favor and buy it. I was contacted by the author prior to the writing of this book. Frankly, I had my doubts that any "outsider" could write a good book about Spygate, but Bryan O’Leary did just that. He really did his homework with research and was careful to footnote all his facts. You will enjoy O’Leary’s sarcastic wit and "wordsmanship." This book is an easy read, about 46,000 words, that is both easy to follow and clear to understand.
As the title implies, the book is about Bill Belichick, the New England Patriots and the videotaping scandal (or curious non-scandal) that was uncovered in September, 2007. Among the many fascinating touchpoints of this informative and thought-provoking manuscript:
- If Bill Belichick innocently "misinterpreted" the video policy (after all teams received a written warning less than a year earlier), why did the "innocent" videographers (including Matt Walsh) lie to sideline security about what they were doing?
- Wasn’t it strange that the NFL decided to minimize the escapade before talking to Walsh, the star witness? Why is Walsh under a gag order now? Why was the evidence destroyed quickly, an act that defies all logic of investigative process?
- Who is Ernie Adams and why is he the most powerful football mind that no one has ever heard of? Belichick brought Adams to Cleveland in 1991 and after a few years, Browns owner Art Modell offered $10,000 to anyone who could tell him what Adams did! Players still to this day chuckle at the shroud of secrecy that surrounds that man.
- Belichick claimed that he didn’t use the taped signals during the games in question, his "misunderstanding" loophole. Why then did he tape games of teams he wouldn’t see again that year, including our 2004 AFC Championship Game, which Senator Arlen Spector stated on the Senate floor that Steelers players thought the Patriots knew everything that Pittsburgh was going to do?
- Why does Belichick continue to hire cardboard cutouts for coordinators – young people with no experience or older failures – or hire no coordinators at all? Is it interesting that one such young failure, Josh McDaniels, was caught video cheating soon after he moved to Denver?
In addition to the above intriguing discussion points, O’Leary’s book goes into some very interesting statistical phenomena which defies explanation. Why does New England always win at home? Yes, they’re good, but five seasons with perfect 8-0 records? A 31-game home winning streak? An unbelievable record of beating the point spread? The book gives some eye-popping data that will make you think, or perhaps re-think.
You may not agree with everything O’Leary concludes (surely Patriots fans will have an answer for everything), but if you put all the pieces together, like O’Leary does, what can be concluded? The book reminds me of an old saying: If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, sounds like a duck and acts like a duck, guess what – It’s a damn duck!
You can buy the book at Amazon.com and from the following site.