Did Bruce Arians cut a player over parking in the wrong spot?
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians has cultivated a reputation of being a players’ coach. But he’s also a no-nonsense guy who has little to no patience for mistakes, even arguably small ones.
This particular character trait was abundantly illustrated over how Arians apparently cut a Cardinals practice squad player over a parking mistake.
The story goes, as covered in an episode of “All or Nothing,” the eight-part Amazon Video series about the team’s 2015 season, that Arians wasn’t happy with how defensive end Lawrence Okoye parked in a reserved parking spot at the team’s practice facility.
Arians discussed the minor transgression by Okoye, a former British Olympian, with team officials.
“There weren’t any parking places, so he just parked and came running in,” Arians said. “Tough s—, bro.”
Okoye was cut on Oct. 21, shortly after the incident.
“He has a different sense of entitlement having been an Olympian,” Arians said of Okoye. “He is a talented guy. He ought to go to Oxford.”
Interestingly, Okoye actually was accepted to Oxford in 2010 but won’t attend the school until 2017.
While it’s being portrayed that the parking gaffe was the sole reason Okoye was cut, there obviously is much more to the story. Had Okoye been a more talented player, the case can be made the Cardinals may have been willing to overlook an admittedly minor mistake.
But the fact remains that Arians apparently takes reserved parking spots quite seriously. In the first episode of “All or Nothing,” Arians ominously warned players about the issue after mentioning someone had parked in his reserved spot two days in a row.
“If there’s a sign on a parking place anywhere in this facility, don’t park in the b–ch,” he said. “Or I’ll tow your ass.”