This is an excerpt from a column I wrote for Sporting Life Arkansas. You can read it in its entirety here.
Goodwin on crowd booing him: "I don't care. I'm not from Fayetteville. I'm from Little Rockand everybody there loves me"— Bo Mattingly (@SportsTalkwBo) March 2, 2013
Even if you’re an Arkansas fan and spent the previous two hours booing Goodwin, you see that and you just want to scream, "STOOOOP! Archie NOOOOO!!"
On its most basic level, it’s just a wrong statement. Easy fodder for the twitter and message board crowd. Perhaps he knew it wasn’t true and was just trying to deflect the question and get out of Fayetteville as quickly as possible. Maybe he genuinely doesn’t feel a connection to Fayetteville like he does to Little Rock. Admittedly, when I was a high school student in Little Rock, I didn’t feel much connection to Northwest Arkansas either. Maybe it’s all those things.
But when I read that Goodwin said that, a feeling of pity did start to come over me.
Possibly the statement was a defense against dealing with the idea that people who supported him at one time are now against him due to his choice to wear blue instead of red. It’s one thing to see comments on a computer screen, but to see and hear it up close is different.
I didn’t have an issue with fans booing Goodwin during the game. (Specifically, I thought the "D League" chant was pretty clever.) When you spurn fans, they boo you. That’s sports at its most basic level. But I can’t imagine how heartbreaking it would be for me if I returned home and was the most hated person in the room. A room shared with John Calipari, no less.
Thus are the implications of making "business decisions". That’s generally only a term used when one party ends up getting the shaft. Additionally, it’s used to infer that despite it being an unpopular decision, it’s the smart decision. Only Goodwin can say if, in retrospect, going to Kentucky was the smart move for him. But it’s worth wondering how he feels considering the difficulty the Wildcats have experienced this season after winning the national championship last year.