Dan Campbell has become something of a living legend in the weeks since he made the climb from mild mannered (not really) tight ends coach to superhuman interim head coach of the Miami Dolphins.
The guy has biceps that make Dolphins fans believe their coach can beat up the other team's coach. The guy comes up with stuff that makes his team interested in working hard -- such as the black jerseys he awarded this week to the offense after it had a better practice day on Wednesday than the defense. The guy extracted energy and passion from a team last Sunday that previously seemed and played as if disinterested under former coach (nice man) Joe Philbin.
The latest legendary status is how Campbell just talks about stuff freely where his predecessor clammed up as if he was holding state secrets. Philbin refused throughout his three-plus years to reveal who was helping him have such a good replay challenge record. Campbell revealed that its assistant special teams coach Marwan Maalouf within the first two weeks of his tenure and credited Maalouf for helping get a challenge right on Sunday against Tennessee.
Campbell spent part of this week discussing his love for the metal band Metallica. You didn't think he'd be a Captain and Tennille fan did you?
“You must have been speaking to (Houston Texans punter) Shane Lechler (and Billy Liucci); those are two of my roommates (in college)," Campbell said. "Don’t listen to those guys, they’ll tell you things that aren’t entirely true. Those are good friends of mine, the whole ‘Dantallica’ deal, I’ve always been a Metallica fan and those stories go way back, but they loved to mess with me about that.
" As a matter of fact, I’ll tell you this, when I was in college I wanted to go see Metallica play in Houston and we were in College Station. I knew tickets were going to be on sale at eight in the morning and all of that stuff, I stayed up all night, went and got tickets for myself, Billy, Lechler and another one of our friends Jason Bragg, and I was fired up.
"I had asked them the night before you guys want to go and they all go “Yeah that will be great,’ so I come find out that every time I wasn’t around they were talking crap behind my back about the fact that they didn’t even want to go to the concert, that just shows how good of friends they really are."
Look, I cannot tell you Dantallica is going to be a great NFL head coach. I can't tell you he's going to put Bill Belichick to shame -- like maybe next week when Miami plays the New England Patriots.
But I can tell you the legend of Campbell is growing almost to mythic proportions. Consider that Thursday during the CBS national pregame show, former Pittsburgh coach Bill Cowher gushed about Campbell and talked about how tough the guy is. Cowher told about how Campbell made his players go through an Oklahoma drill during his first practice.
Except it's not true. It was a one-on-one drill. Anyone who knows football knows that. Campbell has said as much. But that's part of the growing Dan Campbell myth that can only get larger as the Dolphins continue to recover from their 1-3 start. (Yeah, I predict they beat Houston on Sunday, making Campbell 2-0 and the team 3-3).
Things will only get crazier then. Understand that the Dolphins are within sight of selling out Sunday's game already for a game between two teams under .500. Imagine if Miami wins and goes to New England with a chance to knock off the defending Super Bowl champions?
Craziness will ensue.
The myth will grow.
To what proportions? Well, I asked my twitter followers to share how the myth of Dan Campbell will grow with more wins. Some offerings:
Dan Campbell never gets queasy.
Dan Campbell eats at Chick fil A ... on Sundays.
Dan Campbell can fine and suspend Roger Goodell.
Dan Campbell thought Richie Incognito was kinda wimpy.
Dan Campbell doesn't flush his toilet because he merely scares the crap out of it.
Dan Campbell is not going to be the Alabama coach ... unless he wants to.
Google goes to Dan Campbell for searches.
Colonel Jessup wants Dan Campbell on that wall.
Dan Campbell could fail forward fast and succeed!
Dan Campbell loves Metallica and he's "too hip hop" and he's still got a chance to get the gig.
The Sandman plays Enter Dan Campbell.
Dan Campbell could bench press Rex Ryan...before the lap band surgery.
Mike Wallace wants to return to the Dolphins to play for Dan Campbell even if he doesn't get targeted 10 times a game. Whatever number Dan says is fine.
Marshawn Lynch learned Beastmode from Dan Campbell.
Putin will pull out of Syria if Dan Campbell tells him to.
If Seal Team 6 is tired, the government calls Dan Campbell.
Dan Campbell could say it's no sin to punt and suddenly you would think that's a genius statement.
Dan Marino is convinced Dan Campbell will get him a Super Bowl ring.
(Actually, if this guy is what everyone hopes, that last one might not be a joke).