Rand: Brewster takes cliché bluster to Vikings sidelines

  • Updated: October 3, 2011 - 6:40 AM
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Former Gophers coach Tim Brewster, chatting with Vikings coach Leslie Frazier before Sunday’s game against the Chiefs, was sideline reporter for Fox.

Photo: Orlin Wagner, Associated Press

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At two points in our life, we bought into the hope that Tim Brewster might be just what a local football team needed to cure its ills.

Once was 2007, when Brewster Bluster temporarily had us wanting to believe that he was going to pilot a flight to Pasadena. (That plane, of course, crashed in an Iowa cornfield.)

The other was Sunday. With the 0-3 Vikings set to take on the 0-3 Chiefs, we popped on the TV -- only to be reminded that Brewster, the ex-Gophers coach, was the sideline reporter on the Fox broadcast of the game. It was all too odd. But amateur reverse psychology brought about this thought: It would be entirely too perfect if Brewster was on the sidelines when a local football team got a much-needed victory.

Instead, of course, Brewster did what we really should have expected -- reminding us of a past football failure and helping narrate a current failure, all while reintroducing a series of clichés and faux motivational tactics along the way.

About two hours before game time, Brewster (@TimBrewster) said on Twitter: "In Arrowhead on an NFL Sunday, are you hungry or are you starving??" As in, which one of these teams wants it more? It was so very Brewster -- and it was a line he felt was good enough to repeat during Sunday's broadcast.

From there, we were treated to several other pearls of wisdom. He said the Vikings' front four might be the best in the NFL. Granted, Jared Allen and Co. are good. But the best defensive line in the NFL probably belongs to a team with a victory, maybe even two.

Minnesota fans on Twitter pounced on that line, just as they did as the broadcasting team -- led by the usually solid Gus Johnson -- kept tossing it to Brewster by calling him "Coach Brewster" or "Coach Brew."

Guys, that era is over. There might be a lot of Brewster's players on a roster that came within 59 points of upsetting Michigan on Saturday, but this is Jerry Kill's team now.

Brewster referred to the game as a "boxing match," with the Vikings needing to keep delivering "body blows" via Adrian Peterson. "Answer the bell" was trotted out later. Near the end of the third quarter, an already-shaky Fox production took a nosedive when Brewster didn't respond for several seconds to a toss from the booth.

To some degree, of course, Brewster can be forgiven. He's a career football coach, not a sideline reporter. We would never begrudge a man for trying a new job.

In doing so, though, he gave plenty of us flashbacks we certainly didn't need during an already-troubling football present.

MICHAEL RAND

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