On Saturday, the folks at JoeBucsFan.com pointed out that the quotes from press conferences conducted by Buccaneers coach Raheem Morris often end up being altered to a certain extent, once they are transcribed and printed in the various publications of the traditional media.
On Sunday, JoeBucsFan.com provided an example of the phenomenon, which suggests that perhaps the team has been making subtle yet significant revisions to his words.
Said Morris regarding what he has learned in after a year as a head coach, via JoeBucsFan.com and his own mouth: “Now, I’m at a different stage. I’m at a different point. I’m like Josh
Freeman, as a head coach. I’m at a different point where I got
Said Morris, via the local newspapers: “Now, I’m at a different stage. I’m like Josh Freeman as
a head coach. I’ve got a direction, and we know exactly what we want to
The fact that the same quotes appeared in two different print publications suggests that the team distributed a hard copy of the quotes, with the words gently massaged. But as JoeBucsFan.com points out, “I’m at a different point where I got direction” (which is what Morris said) and “I’ve got a direction, and we know exactly what we want to do” sends two different messages. “I got direction” implies that, in 2009, Morris had none at all. “I’ve got a direction, and we know exactly what we want to do” implies that, in 2009, he had a different direction — but nevertheless a direction, and thus not “no direction.”
It would be naive to assume that the P.R. folks who are charged with making the team look good would never adjust a quote in the hope of helping out the head coach. Our guess is that, 99 percent of the time, it’s never noticed. When it is, the responsible parties need only to invoke the catch phrase of the one of the products of our modern-day Shakespeares.
UPDATE: The Buccaneers deny changing any quotes from Morris. “We do not clean up, nor even transcribe or circulate press conference quotes to
the media who cover our team,” spokesman Jonathan Grella said via e-mail. “You can ask each of them yourself.”