When I called Clint out of the blue last night, he was on his farm fields moving hay and alfalfa that had got blown around from a rain they got. Clint didn't hesitate for a second to continue the interview. For the youngters, Clint Didier was a 12th round draft pick by the Redskins in 1981. He played 7 years for the Redskins as TE and was on two of the Super Bowl winning teams. He currently lives in the state of Washington where he is running for Senate (and currently winning).
In Part 1, we'll cover what motivated Clint to run for Senate and how certain coaches including Joe Bugel and Joe Gibbs helped make him who he is today. In Part 2, we'll get into Russ Grimm.
What was your deciding moment to make a run for the Senate?
Didier: When I see our kids and grand-kids' freedom being jeopardized by an over-intrusive government. They want to keep taking away our rights and individual liberties.We've gotten away from the basics...the Constitution.
How are things going with the polls? The election is August, 17th, right?
Didier: Yes, August 17th. Things are going well. The GOP has finally got their establishment candidate. Dino Rossi. He has now entered the race. One week into it. That's fine and dandy. Joe Gibbs always told us competition brings out the best in everyone.
Anything Joe Bugel taught you that you'd bring to Washington? I was thinking we could make Buges head of the Border Control.
Didier: (laughing) Well, Bugel is the one that gave me my thick skin. He was one hard-nosed coach. He was pretty tough on me as a player, but it was only because he knew the potential was there and he wanted every ounce of it. And that's what I respect about Joe Bugel.
Heath Shuler of course is a former Redskin, arguably the worst of all-time, it would make for some great journalism if you two cross paths in the Capitol hallways.
Didier: Yea, that would. I've never gotten to meet Heath. I'd be really interested in sitting down with him for a cup of coffee and talking about the current state of affairs in this country of ours and where it's gotta go to get resolved. I think all we need to do is go back and look at some game tapes. Probably the best one would be Ronald Reagan coming away from the Jimmy Carter debacle. Or maybe it was JFK coming away from that mess he inherited. Or maybe Harding back in the roaring 20s. What did they do [in times of trouble]?...They lowered tax rates. They gave incentives to businesses to create and risk. For businesses to grow and create jobs. The opposite is being done by this Administration. They're suppressing the American spirit and they're not allowing anybody to want to take the gamble and create a business right now. That's what we got to change.
(Towards the end of our conversation, I congratulated Clint for his recent State Championship win coaching High School football)
Did you have the 50-gut and 70-chip in your offense?
Didier: Oh yea. I ran the Joe Gibbs 1-back offense. I called Jumbo - that's our short-yardage and goal-line where we run 70-chip. 50-70 chip, 50-70 lead, we got play-action - everything we ran with the Redskins. We went to 4 state championships in 9 years with that same stuff. We went to 6 semis, 7 quarters and every year we were in the playoffs with Joe Gibbs' 1-back offense.
I was told by a lot of people it's too complicated. These kids can't learn it. I said, "Do you want to bet?" We don't give our kids of this Nation enough credit. They are so smart and they are being starved of an educational process. We have got to get competition back into our school systems big time. And that means we got to get rid of the Department of Education and give it back to the States and there's a 10th amendment. And hopefully they'll give it back to the Districts and create competition, and then we'll be back to number one. We're 33rd today. We were [ranked] 7th when Ronald Reagan was President...today, 33rd in the world. It's sad.