Kalani Sitake defends players’ missionary service


BYU football coach Kalani Sitake was center stage last night as one of six Division I coaches during ESPN’s coverage of the NCAA College football Playoff National Championship.

Sitake, along with several other coaches, critiqued the game during live action. That critique spilled over to Sitake when Syracuse coach Dino Babers commented on BYU’s offensive linemen.

“(It’s) A lot easier to protect when those offensive linemen are a little bit older than everybody else,” Babers said.

Baber’s comment drew laughter on the set, but Sitake quickly responded, “Hey, they didn’t go on a mission to Gold’s Gym I can tell you that. These guys are riding bicycles and eating Ramen noodles for two years.”

“If it were a great system to develop your athletes, Alabama would be doing it,” Sitake added.

Jonny Linehan, BYU’s punter, reacted to his coach’s response on Twitter.

Clemson went on to defeat the defending national champions, Alabama, in the final seconds of the game, 35-31.

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