Cowboys Ride For Free dispatched new contributor Steve Dodson to the scene, because, well, that's how we treat the new guys around here. Plus, everyone else was busy. Per a pre-arranged agreement between Squinky’s agent and the legal team at SB Nation, we were not allowed to replay the audio, so what follows is the full transcript of that interview.
CRFF: Thank you Squinky for taking time out of your busy schedule to talk with CRFF from your, well, "beautiful" second home in Ames, Iowa.
Our readers will be very curious…why Ames? What does a "hostile demon-octopus that dwells a thousand miles below the plains" find attractive about Iowa?
Squinky: Folks like me don’t like a lot of direct attention, so I needed to find someplace remote, out of the way, where I’m not likely to run into prying eyes. In that sense, I thought it was the "smart choice". Certainly better than Lubbock. Have you ever been to Lubbock? It's an awful, awful place – even for a hell-beast like me. Cooper, a colleague who is currently at Texas, didn’t protect himself on an overnight in Lubbock after one of our weekly poker games. He’s had a chronic "itch" ever since. Idiot.
No, I remembered the first rule of real-estate: location, location, location. Turns out Ames is the perfect fit. No better place to be when I need to escape the rigors of the office. Nobody outside of a 10 mile radius cares what goes in this stadium. It’s heaven – if I can say that out loud. It was a coincidence that OSU had to play here on Thursday or Friday night. That was pure bonus.
CRFF: Squinky – do you prefer Squinky or Eugene?
S: Did you talk to my Mom before doing this? You did do some research, right? My agent said I would be talking to the next Walter Cronkite. You sound to me more like the next Thayer Evans.
To answer your question, I don’t recall Brian Phillips from Grantland referring to me as Eugene. Catch my drift? Let’s move on. I have to do some extra work because those fools at Iowa State are actually playing on Saturday. You think they would have figured out by now that Cyclone football is best served on Thursday or Friday evening after children have gone to bed, especially after seeing what Baylor did to them. That's the kind of stuff you see on HBO in the middle of the night.
CRFF: How has work been this season? Has it been tough to keep busy?
S: Honestly, it’s been boring. Plenty to do, but the Cowboys are not putting me to the test. It’s been too easy. Seriously, how hard is it to make a QB fumble the shotgun snap on 1st and goal, then throw an interception on the next play? Any rookie could do that.
Gundy had been difficult to deal with since hiring that guy who lives on Red Bull, and the next OC had balls the size of Alaska. Never mind that damned QB Weeden. You know, I’m one of only two of my kind to battle with, and conquer, the "non-traditional" student athlete. Mature QB’s are the toughest to deal with.
Was starting to think Gundy had figured something out, then he Googled...Binged....hell I don’t know how he found this guy. Never thought there could be so many variations of a screen pass in a playbook. How he doesn’t use that diamond formation more is beyond me. Maybe he doesn’t want to give his wife any ideas.
CRFF: So it’s been rumored that you may have dabbled a little with some other stuff in an effort to maintain your "edge."
S: I categorically deny that comment. Replay never proved that was a goal line fumble at the end of the Texas – Iowa State game. Besides, everybody knows Cooper is incompetent. He couldn’t pull that off the year before in Stillwater when I gave him a freebie, so not pulling it off again a year later is way more believable than the Longhorns actually suffering unexpected heartbreak at the end of a game. Like that would ever happen. I deal in believable events. Who’s going to believe that a team with all that talent and speed would let a slow, white QB with a knee brace run for 500 yards. Ok, maybe it wasn’t 500 yards, but it sure felt like it. Classic Cooper.
CRFF: Some OSU fans think you spent some time with Thayer Evans over the past year.
S: Me? Work with him? Not sure where you heard that. I stick to football. Besides, I have standards. That guy is a hack, AND an OU homer. Not even Cooper would go near him. Just because my greatest moment handed the win to the Sooners doesn’t mean I like them. It’s just that rivalry games are some of the best opportunities.
Anyway, he thinks he’s going to take down the Cowboys with that "series?" Oklahoma State deals with me, EVERY YEAR, and comes back for more, EVERY YEAR. That amateur had no chance before he even stepped in the ring. This is the big leagues, Thayer. Learn how to spike you hair like Gundy and maybe you’ll have a chance. Just don’t tuck in your pullover unless you want to get love notes from my Mother.
CRFF: After Morgantown, it seems your season might be over. Why are you in Iowa this week?
S: You know, I haven’t been here all that long, but it’s been great. It’s nice and quiet. The Big 12 had two divisions, so OSU almost never came up here.
But then things changed and 2011 happened. Phillips wrote that article. The Cowboys were suddenly in the discussion for a National Championship. People hated me. They thought I hated Oklahoma State.
Let me be clear…I LOVE OKLAHOMA STATE UNIVERSITY. I love their version of the color orange. Except for the carbon fiber helmet, I really don’t like the gray stuff. Pistol Pete is awesome. Not a big fan of Bullet. Black cats and horses give me the heebie-jeebies. Gallagher Iba is the toughest place in the universe to pull off a job when it’s rowdy.
You take places like Norman, Austin, Tuscaloosa, these places EXPECT to win. They don’t appreciate it anymore. They take it for granted.
Nowhere is winning more appreciated than in Stillwater, and that is all due to me. Where can you find a football program that, no matter what happened the year before, every new season brings new hope? Ok, we’ll leave the 90’s out of this. Maybe next time I’ll tell you about the FANTASTIC vacation I took that decade.
Anyway, I love resilience. OSU keeps getting up off the mat, and thanks to them I’ve developed the most renowned sports devil practice ever. You don’t want to know what my speaking fees are these days. All because, with the help of this wonderful university, I’ve crafted the perfect program for continuously crushing their hopes while keeping their hope alive. Couldn’t have done this with those places I mentioned above. They have no fortitude. The mutual challenges we present each other have made each of us so much better.
I know it sounds weird, but I love OSU. My agent said I shouldn’t say that, but what the heck.
CRFF: So….why again are you here this week?
S: Right, sorry. You would think it could’ve been over, but the Big 12 is so bad this season that, despite the mess with the offensive line and Gundy’s fumbling around with the QB’s, here they are with one loss and still control their own destiny. Who would have ever guessed their defense would actually look like a REAL defense, not something propped up by all these abstract, advanced stats. Thank heavens, because if I had to read one more article at Pistols Firing about how OSU’s defense isn’t really awful, even though the score on the board doesn’t agree, well, I don’t know.
Anyway, I’ve got to stay diligent. Have to be ready for anything. I’ve got a sneaking suspicion that LB Lavey may have figured me out after I got him to dive at Bell’s feet last season. He’s almost single-handedly becoming a problem, almost like he’s on a mission. Weeden was like that.
CRFF: So you have a plan for OSU’s trip to Ames?
S: Plan? A year ago I would have said "yes." But I recently learned one of the most valuable lessons ever from a trusted mentor, probably the greatest sports devil ever, and who was also my Dad’s best friend. Let the moment come to you. That’s when you get the craziest, but most believable and memorable events. It was during that lesson that I also learned for the first time that my Dad’s most famous moment came to him exactly that way.
So no, no plan. Gonna let it come to me. If it happens, if the right moment presents itself, I’ll know it. Just a flick, that's all it takes [flashes his "devil" smile while he wiggles the tip of one tentacle. A small lamp in the corner of the room falls over].
If not, then I have to be patient. Sorry Cyclones, no promises. Besides, you’re the dopes who decided not to play a game on Thursday or Friday night.
CRFF: Wait, you read the blogs?
S: Absolutely! At least there I get some love, so to speak. That guy Whetsell, at your place, he gets it. He pays me some respect. The regular media…the papers, the radio, the TV…they don’t care, they don’t believe. I don’t do it for the money. I want validation, and the recognition provides that. Phillips’ article really helped me turn a corner in my life, helped me see things from a different perspective. I don’t care if I’m hated, that comes with the territory, but I want to be respected.
CRFF: Right. You want to be respected. By OSU fans. I’m going to have to sit on that one for a bit, so let’s move on to my last question, one which, depending on your answer, could make many Cowboy fans rejoice.
S: Am I planning on retiring?
CRFF: No, no, even better…any plans to field a part-time "tentacled hell-beast" in Waco? The tarp would make a marvelous place to hide.
S: Seriously? Any place that covers part of their stadium with black tarp doesn’t deserve a sports devil. Please. Gotta have a fan base for it to be worth our while. You combine that with the presence of Art Briles…forget it. Baptist don’t bother me. In fact, they are some of the easiest to mess with, but Briles is a deal breaker. Anyway, why would I live under a tarp? That would suck almost as much as Baylor having to put it up because they can’t put enough butts in the seats despite having the most exciting team in the Big 12.
Listen, don’t want to be abrupt, but we are well past the time my agent said was appropriate, and I’ve got a photo shoot for "Sports Devil Monthly." Tenth time I’ve been featured on the cover. Nobody else has more than 1, except for Coach Sny….I mean my mentor. He holds the record at 22.
CRFF: Well then, thank you very much for your time and this little glimpse into your life. We really appreciate it. Oh, by the way, when we spoke to your Mom she said…
S: You can leave now. Don't think you want to give me any more motivation. I’ll see you guys on Saturday.