That one time Woody Hayes let a turtle bite his ‘whatever’

By Adam Kramer   Feb. 12, 2013

Speaking at the Ohio coaches convention, Urban Meyer touched on a variety of topics when given the stage for an extended period of time. One of those topics just happened to be that one time a turtle bit Woody Hayes on the… the… the object that should probably never go near a turtle’s mouth if possible.

Ohio State coach Earl Bruce needed a boost, so he brought in Woody Hayes. Meyer tells the rest of the story, which Coaching Search has passed along.

“So I guess Ohio State had lost the bowl game, so Earl Bruce brings in Woody Hayes. I had been there just a week and I’m thinking, ‘Holy, this is Coach Hayes.’ I’m sitting in the back. Coach Hayes was not healthy at the time, but stands up and starts laying into the coaching staff about toughness. That we have no toughness in the program. That’s why we lost the game. On and on and screaming, this old guy pounding the table. He says, ‘We have no toughness, and the reason is because you’re not tough. No one on this staff is tough enough, and that’s a problem.’

“He reaches down and grabs this box, slides the top and there was something in the box moving around. He reaches in and he pulls out this turtle. He reaches down, this turtle’s snapping and he says, ‘I’m going to show you toughness.’ He unzips his pants and takes out whatever he takes out. The turtle reaches up and snaps at him. You see the veins and the sweat (on Hayes). He screams at the coaches, ‘That’s toughness! That’s f’n toughness!’ He reaches down, pokes the turtle right in the eye and it falls off. He wipes the sweat off his forehead and says, ‘That’s the problem. We don’t have anybody in this room tough enough to do that right there.

“(One assistant) raises his hand and says, ‘Coach, I’d do this. Just promise not to poke me in the eye.’”

It reminds me a bit of this commercial – minus the ‘whatever’ part of this equation – which apparently has been remix’d because the Internet is awesome.

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