Miami’s Al Golden shows us a softer side of coaching during Malcolm Lewis’ injury

Graham Watson

One we missed from the weekend, but definitely wanted to highlight.

We're not posting this because of the injury to freshman receiver Malcolm Lewis, though it is ridiculously gruesome and if you're squeamish you should look away. Rather, we're showing this video because of coach Al Golden's immediate response to his player.

Lewis makes a great catch and is rolled up by a Georgia Tech defender during the tackle. If you aren't squeamish, look at Lewis' ankle, the back of his shoe — the Nike emblem — is facing up while the rest of his leg is normal. Ankles aren't supposed to bend that way.

My guess is that there was screaming, lots and lots of screaming, which not only prompted the medical staff to rush out onto the field, but also Golden, who, as you can see from the screenshot, cradles Lewis while the trainers check him out. And Lewis is holding on to his coach, squeezing his shirt.

"I knew he was scared," said Golden of Lewis, who dislocated his ankle, will need surgery and will miss the rest of the season. "We've all had an injury at some point. … That's when you can't see the result of the injury. And certainly, in this case, he could see the result. That was tough on him."

You don't see this often. Rarely do coaches go out onto the field when there's an injury and if they do, they don't clutch their players the way Golden did. I think we forget that coaches are essentially filling a parental role while the players are in school. They promise to take care of these guys and watch over them. What Golden did was very parental, nurturing and was probably a great help to a player who was not only hurting but panicked.

That's a coach for whom many guys would want to play.

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