Rod Carey: 'My wife likes me in a suit. I hate it'

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Monday December 31, 2012

Posted by: Chris Vannini on December 31, 2012

Rod Carey is going to have quite the debut.

After being promoted to his first head coaching role at Northern Illinois, his first game is going to be against Florida State in the Orange Bowl.

Carey doesn't like talking about himself, but was asked if it has hit him yet that his first game as a head coach is coming up.

"It's one game that way, isn't that good that way? Can't screw it up too much, right?" he said. "No, you know, what's changed for me is this stuff, which is good.  I'm happy to do it for NIU and for our football program. But other than that, listen, I'm more comfortable with a whistle around my neck and coaching than I am with a mic in front of me in a suit, I can tell you that. My wife likes it when I dress up in a suit, I hate it."

The headline part of NIU has been its offense, led by dual-threat quarterback Jordan Lynch, who said FSU has never seen an offense like theirs.

NIU is No. 8 in the nation in scoring offense, but Carey was quick to point out Florida State was No. 12.

"Yeah, well, everyone has made a big deal about our offense, which we do OK," he said. "We average like, what is it, like 40, 41 points a game. Well, they average like 40. It's not like they're slouches. It's going to come down to what defense can stop what offense, because both offenses are good, both defenses are good, and that's football.  Can you stop the run, can you contain an offense, all those old clichés is what this game is going to come down to."

NIU's run to a BCS game has been compared to Boise State defeating Oklahoma in the 2007 Fiesta Bowl. Carey was asked if there is a gambler's mentality or a Statue of Liberty play in there. The NIU coaches have discussed that.

"We were talking about that in the staff room the other day, and our running back coach wanted to put it in," Carey said. "I said, 'No, we're not doing that.' They've seen it before. Yeah, no, it was a funny discussion. Yeah, we have certain things.

"Listen, you're a football coach, you've got a month to put a game plan in, you've got to have some things.  The trick is not to have too many things screw up your own kids. Yeah, we're going to play this game to win.  Are we all of a sudden going to become something we're not? No."



Chris Vannini is the lead writer for and has covered Michigan State sports for The State News, The Oakland Press and He writes a weekly column for the Detroit Free Press on behalf of SB Nation. Vannini lives in Big Ten country, so his foot speed is far from SEC caliber, but his pulse on coaches is hard to match. Be sure to follow @CoachingBuzz on twitter and send your feedback to

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News,, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to

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