January 11, 2011
The Screaming Viking!
No newsworthy sources are bothering to report that they have received confirmation that Mark Schubert will continue to act as USA Swimming National Team Director through the Olympic Games in 2020.
Despite a press release directly from the USOC offices in Colorado Springs, a press conference at the International Swimming Hall of Fame, numerous articles in reputable news sources such as the Washington Post, USA Today, ESPN and Swimming World that stated otherwise, and even though all media concerned gave direct quotes from Schubert and USA Swimming Executive Director Chuck Wielgus in which they had stated in no uncertain terms that Schubert had moved on, the whole ordeal has been dismissed by both parties as rumor.
"What was actually said that was so misquoted is that Mark Shubert was taking a well deserved six day vacation after the success of Team USA at the Pan Pacific Championships." said Wielgus, "I don't know how any of this nonsense about Mark being forced to take a sixty day leave of absence and his subsequent termination came about. Oh well, leave it to the media to never take enough of an interest in Olympic sports to put reporters on the job who might actually take the time to get their facts straight... do you know how many times I have read articles about high school kids breaking world records in the 20 yard Intermediate Medley? It's just silly. And don't even get me started about ABC's 20/20!"
When asked about his press conference held on November 17th in Fort Lauderdale, Mark Schubert stated that "none of those quotes that all those reporters had exactly the same and none of the statements that you can clearly hear and see me state on the video can be directly attributed to me. It is all just speculation by a bunch of sloppy reporters out to make a quick buck."
Schubert's lawyer, Michael Bernstein added, "my client tried to tell everyone that after the Pan Pacific Championships, Mr. Wielgus shook his hand repeatedly, looked him in the eye and said 'good job, coach!'. Now is that the kind of interaction you would have with someone you were about to fire from a high profile job? The media should be ashamed of themselves and there should be some sort of retraction published in each of those news sources."
"Obviously, we thought there was more to this story than there actually was, and I intend to get to the bottom of it over the next few days." Swimming World Publisher Brett Rutemiller said. "We just haven't really been checking our facts as well as we should be. I have fired all of my staff. This won't happen again."
When asked if he would give Mark Schubert a positive reference, Wielgus replied, "Absolutely! Our National Team is in good hands!"
All of this comes during a time of rocky transition for USA Swimming, as the organization is struggling to maintain stability in their recently conceptualized "post-graduate centers of excellence." The news media has also falsely reported the dismissal of the head coaches of each of those high profile training centers with the most recent being Sean Hutchison at FAST in Fullerton, California who was obviously misquoted by several news sources to be "taking his dog and pony show elsewhere."