You know that GIF of Vince McMahon's entrance at WWE, walking so broad-shouldered and happy down the entrance ramp? Imagine that, but it is a 62-year-old football coach instead.
While being introduced as Indiana's new head football coach during the Hoosiers' basketball game against Maryland Friday night, Curt Cignetti had some interesting comments about his Big Ten peers one day after being named Indiana's next head football coach.
"Hey look, I'm super fired up about this opportunity," Cignetti said while standing at midcourt of Assembly Hall. "I've never taken a back seat to anybody and don't plan on starting now. Purdue sucks ... but so does Michigan and Ohio State. Go IU!"
Purdue sucksso does Michigan and Ohio State Curt Cignetti has arrived in the Big Ten pic.twitter.com/4Edzp3z5Zo— Michael Niziolek (@michaelniziolek) December 2, 2023
Well, he certainly knows how to win over a fanbase during his first full day on the job. The type of comment that will get Indiana fans excited and behind a coach, even if his words might not be true.
This comes hours after going on Big Ten Network to say that he would be back in Indianapolis to compete in the 2024 Big Ten *football* championship – yes, football, not basketball.
"I figured that I should make this trip up here since we'll be playing in this game next year," Cignetti said on Big Ten Network, live from Lucas Oil Stadium ahead of Saturday night's Big Ten championship.
This isn't the first time throughout this college football season that Cignetti's antics have gone viral on social media. Earlier in the season, the head coach pulled out his cell phone – which is banned by NCAA rules – during one of James Madison's games to show refs he didn't agree with the call.
Cignetti takes over an Indiana program who has won more than six games in a season just once since 2008 and has never won more than nine games in its 125-year history. The Hoosiers just finished a 3-9 season, Tom Allen's last in Bloomington after leading Indiana to a 33-49 season in seven years. Cignetti, named the 2023 Sun Belt Conference Coach of the Year, led James Madison to an 11-1 record this year in just its second season at the FBS level.
If Cignetti wants to stand behind his words, both that his rival "sucks" and the two best teams in the Big Ten this season do as well, he will have to turn around an Indiana football program that has been among the worst in the Big Ten throughout the last three seasons.
The Hoosiers have lost their last 28 straight games against Ohio State dating back to 1991.