Yes they will. For while the university may be making trouble for him, he makes trouble for himself with his sometimes blunt, often tactless mouth. He knows it, but says, "Some people have a hard time adjusting to the truth. And that's what I deal in. I have the guts to do what most people know is right but are afraid to do." He has been known to tell promising high school quarterbacks who are leaning toward South Carolina, "Son, you can't throw a lick." This can discourage a prospect.
"My biggest weakness is that I care too much about my players," says Carlen. He likes to be the stoic, benevolent, patriarchal type. Just before Saturday's game, he told his boys, "You've worked yourselves to death. Now go out there and win, just because you deserve it." Apparently North Carolina Tailback Famous Amos Lawrence was more deserving, as he dazzled the Gamecocks by rushing for 134 yards and scoring two touchdowns. "I hurt for my kids more than I hurt for myself," said Carlen when the game was over. "Of course, I hurt for myself an awful lot."
Now in his fifth year at South Carolina, Carlen knows it's time to win big—to date, he's 23-23-1—and the fans are thinking that way, too. Witness the bumper sticker seen around Columbia that the athletic department didn't print Up: CARLEN '79: BE GOOD OR BE GONE.