Competitive professional sports can bring out an incredible amount of emotion and passion from everyone involved, with fans, players, and even coaches sometimes losing their cool and seeing the heat rise all the way to their heads where it becomes uncontrollable.
We recently saw a prime example of this in England’s Premier League, where Chelsea hosted Tottenham Hotspur in a fiery London derby that could perhaps be named “The Battle of the Bridge: Part 2” as it matched the same kind of atmosphere that was experienced back in 2016.
This time around saw Antonio Conte and Thomas Tuchel have a number of heated clashes on the touchdown, with it culminating at the full-time whistle as both managers got into a spat when shaking each other’s hand. This led to both coaches receiving a red card and subsequently being handed a suspension where they were unable to guide their team from the dugout.
With this incident happening recently, we thought we would take a look at examples of other incidents where coaches around the sporting world had experienced moments of madness where the heat of the moment simply got to their heads and became uncontrollable.
So without further ado, here are five examples of hot-headed coaches who lost their cool.
Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger (2014)
This one needs little introduction as the rivalry between these two managers is well-documented, with it often boiling over into some pretty heated exchanges both on and off the pitch.
One of their most notable clashes came back in 2014 when Mourinho was in charge at Chelsea and Wenger was still at the helm of Arsenal, with the Blues running out 2-0 winners in a game that saw Wenger shove Mourinho after being enraged by the Portuguese’s touchline antics.
It seems that no matter what has happened since then, these two will always have a bit of bad blood between them.
Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason & Florida coach Dan Mullen (2018)
We stay in the world of American football for this next example, as back in 2018 Vanderbilt Commodores head coach Derek Mason and Florida Gators counterpart Dan Mullen found themselves involved in a heated exchange following their game at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.
A heated exchange ensued after a targeting flag was made after Florida linebacker James Houston hit defensive lineman Dare Odeyingbo who was deemed to be a defenceless player on a punt return. It led to the ejection of Houston, while Florida’s linebacker Vosean Joseph was also ejected after receiving his second unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. This would have likely had an impact on a number of bets that had been placed by those gambling in Florida as Joseph was the team’s leading tackler at that point.
Jim Harbaugh – San Francisco 49ers vs Detroit Lions (2011)
Staying in the NFL now and we head back to the 2011 NFL season where then-San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh was involved in a now infamous incident with Detroit Lions counterpart Jim Schwartz.
This all started after the final whistle had blown following the Niners’ 25-19 victory over the Lions, with the two coaches shaking hands before Harbaugh decided that he wanted to give Schwartz a more forceful congratulations as he proceeded to pat him hard on the back. This led to an angry response from Schwartz who then chased after Harbaugh and had to be restrained by several members of his coaching staff and players.
Both coaches were then fined $15,000 each for their part in the incident, with Schwartz later admitting that his actions were “unprofessional” and that he had overreacted to the situation.
Juwan Howard and Joe Krabbenhoft (2022)
College basketball can be rather feisty at times, and we saw this first-hand at the beginning of the year during the game between the Wisconsin Badgers and the Michigan Wolverines.
Michigan’s Juwan Howard and Wisconsin’s Joe Krabbenhoft were involved in an ugly brawl during the handshake line that involved players and staff after the Badgers’ 77-63 victory, as the former of the two was left angry at a late timeout call that had been made.
Howard had hit Krabbenhoft with an open hand to the face after the latter had said something to him while confronting Greg Gard about the decision to make the timeout. Scenes turned ugly and players started getting physical with each other, too. Howard was suspended for the remainder of the Big Ten season and fined $40,000.
As can be seen, there are a number of moments of madness where the red mist seemingly clouds the better judgement of those who are perhaps supposed to be providing and setting an example to the rest of their team and its fans. It does not matter what sport it is, but then again, we all love to see some emotion when it involves our favorite teams, right?!