Leach’s support for Trump remains strong

The WSU football Head Coach Mike Leach previously endorsed Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump and continues to support Trump even after the released video of his lewd comments last Friday.

Trump said that the comments were ‘locker room banter’ after the video was released.

In public statements over the weekend, Gov. Mike Pence, Trump’s running mate, said he cannot condone the comments, and Trump’s wife, Melania Trump, said that his words were offensive to her, but that she has forgiven him. Other GOP officials have also released statements stating their disapproval.

Despite the effect those comments may have on Trump’s public perception, Leach said at Monday’s press conference he does not believe that his support of the presidential candidate affects his building of a successful Power Five program.

“[Recruits] walk right by a picture of [Trump] that’s hanging in my office,” Leach said. “So everybody that we have recruited here has seen the picture.”

He continued to explain that the fact he supports Trump is public information and he hasn’t had any problems with recruiting potential student athletes since his endorsement of Trump.

Leach said people usually just ask him what Trump is like in person if the candidate is brought up in conversation.

Leach seems to be correct in the assumption that recruiting will not suffer from his Republican endorsement, as he has already landed nine three star recruits for the class of 2017 so far this season.

“I think they also appreciate the fact that I know somebody who is trying to make a difference, regardless if they are voting for somebody else,” Leach said.

Leach was also very adamant in his support of Trump’s policies, insisting that the U.S. is losing some of its core values and needs to change.

“When I was in junior high school and high school we condemned other countries for burning books,” Leach said. “Now, all of a sudden we are in a country where we’re burning books, and not just burning books, we’re burning words.”

Leach still stands by Trump as strongly as ever and believes he can make the changes the U.S. needs.

Leach offered no outright thoughts on Trump’s comments in the video.

“I don’t have any comment on his comments or justification for it,” Leach said. “There is no justification for it and there are no perfect people out there, but everybody in this room, either consciously or unconsciously, is going to leave this room and at some point today say something to somebody that they don’t want in the national media.”

One of Leach’s star players, senior wide receiver Gabe Marks, also remarked on Trump’s ‘locker room talk.’

“I’m sure that that stuff is said anywhere,” Marks said, “people talk like that all the time, just not presidents.”

Athletic Director Bill Moos could not be reached for comment. Both Associate Athletic Director Bill Stevens and Assistant Sports Information Director Linda Chalich declined to comment.

The football team’s next game will be the homecoming contest against UCLA at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday in Martin Stadium.