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A question that had to be asked
March 13, 2009 - Per Peterson
I asked Southwest Minnesota State University head coach Greg Stemen a tough question earlier this week. It wasn’t tough from the standpoint of him answering it, but it was more blatant, the kind of question that could potentially tick him off, and I braced myself for it. I asked him if he thought the Mustangs deserved to be the host team for the Central Regional Tournament. A straightforward, to-the-point question. It’s a fair question, I think, considering how the Mustangs played the last time they took the court — a home loss to No. 8-seed Northern State in the first round of the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference Tournament. If you don’t know him, I’ll tell you Stemen’s a pretty classy guy. He didn’t (at least to my knowledge) get ticked off. He gave me a thorough, if not diplomatic, answer, beginning with, “Yeah, I think we do” as opposed to “What the hell you talking’ about? Of course we deserve to host” … click … dial tone. He gave credit to other teams like St. Cloud State and Metro State, saying they, too, were deserving of being the host team. It was a tough way to start an interview, but I’m glad I asked the question and I hope he respected the fact that I had to. We’ve all seen footage of news conferences on ESPN of coaches going ballistic after a reporter’s question. Some scream and yell. Some swear. Some throw things. Some storm off the stage like a 5-year-old who didn’t get his way. Stemen didn’t overreact, just answered a question. So I’ll throw it out there to all of you basketball fans: DO the Mustangs deserve to play host to the tournament? I think we’ll find out this weekend.
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