Jason Garrett Interviews Houston Nutt

Chris Graythen

(My sources in Dallas have provided me with this exclusive transcript of Houston Nutt’s interview with Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett. Hope you all enjoy this inside look at how a job interview works at the highest level of the NFL!)

Jason Garrett: Coach Nutt, thanks so much for coming in.

Houston Nutt: Thanky-do to you too.

Garrett: I hope you don’t mind, Jerry’s asked to sit in on the interview.

Jerry Jones: Don’t mind me, fellas. I’m just here to listen in. Y’all do your thing. No interference from me.

Nutt: Wooo! Jerry! Cowboy-sooie!

Garrett: Umm. Okay. As you know, we’re on the market for a running backs coach.

Nutt: Running backs. Lifeblood of a team. Set up the pass. Set up the punt. Got to have a strong running game.

Garrett: Well, yes, I think we’re in agreement philosophically. The running game is a vital part of our offensive ident-

Nutt: Vitality. Got a lot of experience there, too. Lot of experience in a lot of things. Taught kindergarten for a year. Kids had heart. Needed to bulk up. Weren’t ready for the SEC, but they sure did play with passion. Had this one kid, Timmy, was the best quarterback I ever saw. Handed off like a madman. Told old Jarven Snood, you got to play more like Timmy. Don’t think he caught my meaning, but that’s okay.

Garrett: To be honest, we’re more interested in your experience with running backs. At Oklahoma State, Arkansas, and Ole Miss, you coached some really excellent backs. Can you speak a little to your philosophy with regards to running back development?

Nutt: Footwork. All about the footwork, Garry. I don’t know if you’re familiar with his body of work, but the last few years over at Ole Miss, I had a kid name of Enricky Davis. Big kid. Big frame. Fast as a junebug on Christmas. He came in and would just run straight ahead, use all that size and speed to bust through the line and pick up yards. Nope, I said. Nope. Can’t do that in the SEC. Got to stutter-step. Got to wait for a hole. Got to ride your blocks. Can’t expect to move forward if you can’t move side to side. Well, I don’t think I’m spoiling anything to tell you, Enricky picked up a whole lotta yards in a couple of games during his career. Nearly broke 100 once.

Garrett: I don’t want to delve too deeply into what must be a touchy subject, but obviously, your time at both Arkansas and Ole Miss ended badly. How do you account for your early success, and given another shot at coaching, how would you maintain early success?

Nutt: Failure ain’t easy, Ja-Ja. You know that. I know that. A mule in France knows that. Thing is, you gotta ask some key questions. Why did I fail? What brought it on? Did I really fail? Do I exist or am I a butterfly’s dream? Is that a spoon or is it bending into the Matrix? How come Leo ended up on that crazy beach in that movie-picture? I don’t have the answers. Neither do you. But you got to ask!

Garrett: Right. You saw some success with recruiting at both Arkansas and Ole Miss. Now, clearly there isn’t any recruiting required for this job, but you will need to be able to evaluate potential players, particularly guys that we’re considering signing from free agency. Can you talk a little about your evaluation skills?

Nutt: I’ll sum up my recruiting philosophy in two words: Late offers. See, lotta teams jump on prospects early. They evaluate, they build connections. Long story short, they burn out! Can’t burn out! Can’t do it. Easy to burn out. Light a match. Wooo! It’s gone. So you got to pace yourself. Wait till December, January. Take a look around. See who’s out there. Take a look at the film, see what can be seen.

Garrett: Sorry to interrupt, but can you speak a little about film evaluation? What are you looking for when you take a look at the film?

Nutt: Katherine Heigl. Long legs. Blond hair. Very attractive.

Garrett: I’m sorry?

Nutt: The film. 27 Dresses. Got to watch it everyday. All the secrets of the world. Also, has that fella from X-Men. Sylops. Attractive man. Chiseled jaw. I was inclined that way, WOOOO! I’d be on him like a ham on a Labor Day platter.

Garrett: Wait, so you’re saying that you never watched film of potential recruits? You just watched romantic comedies?

Nutt: I did. Because, you see, you’ve got to have a unique philosophy. Lot of teams watch game film. Nobody expected 27 Dresses. Caught ‘em by surprise. How you think I got ole Nick Brassell to score a touchdown on Alabama – ALABAMA!!!! – on our opening drive. Just before we took the field, I pulled Nicky aside, said, "It’s sad ‘cause she ain’t never got married, and that’s what she wants the most." Nick understood. Took the field. BOOM!! Touchdown.

Garrett: Okay, I think we’re about done here.

Nutt: Lotta jobs. Don't want to put the pressure on you fellas, but I got a warnin' for you. Don't know how much longer old Nutter-butter's gonna be on the market, if you get my metaphorical talkin'. Can't hire a house to do the job of a calendar.

Garrett: We’ll, uh, we’ll let you know something soon. We really appreciate you coming in, and best of luck finding a job in this-


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