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Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze’s pretend funeral isn’t *quite* as strange as it sounds

Definitely unusual, though.

NCAA Football: SEC Media Day Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

One of the stranger things heard this week in the college football world was from Ole Miss head coach Hugh Freeze, who said during a media session that he created a “funeral scene” as a motivational tool for the team.

On first glance, this sounds pretty bizarre. When a coach is looking for some kind of tool to help motivate his team, you don’t expect to see that coach’s hypothetical death as the choice.

Freeze’s explanation makes sense though, especially when it was made in reference to the plane crash earlier this month in Alabama that killed six Oxford residents. It’s largely pretty standard football coach motivation type stuff, just presented in a strange package.

You can see his comments in the video, starting at the 7:28 mark.

The relevant portion of what Freeze said is as follows:

I created a funeral scene for me and showed it to all our players. The whole purpose is understanding whatever you believe drives your behaviors, and your behaviors drive your performance, and your performance will give you some result. We need to work backward. You need to say, “This is the result I really want, now are my beliefs and my behaviors going to get me that result?” So I created my funeral scene. A lot of that had to do with the events of these past few weeks. It’s coming. It happens. We don’t know when it happens, but we won’t cheat death.

So I wrote on the screen at our commitment service, “This is the result I want at my funeral.” This is what I want my wife to say about me, this is what I want my kids to say about me, this is what I want our players to say about me, this is what I want my parents to say about me. The rest of the people are probably, no offense, insignificant. But is this what they would say about me today? If not, I have time to make sure my beliefs that are creating my behaviors are going to get me the result I want.

On Wednesday, he tweeted out a PowerPoint slide he used.