A day after some controversial remarks by Josh Rosen were published in a Bleacher Report Q&A with the UCLA QB, Bruins head coach Jim Mora sat down his talented and outspoken star to discuss the aftermath that can come from them.
Rosen touched on a gamut of topics in the Q&A, but struck a nerve with his critics when he suggested that the time demands on college football players are unreasonable.
"Look, football and school don't go together. They just don't," Rosen said, drawing a social media response from Los Angeles Chargers QB Cardale Jones. "Trying to do both is like trying to do two full-time jobs. There are guys who have no business being in school, but they're here because this is the path to the NFL. There's no other way."
Mora discussed his conversation with Rosen in the aftermath of the controversy on Wednesday's Dan Patrick Show.
"(It was) a very, very productive conversation," Mora said. "... When you express these opinions, you create perceptions, you create controversy, there are those who will agree with you, those that won't agree with you, and you have to be willing to live with the consequences. As a college student, a young person, someone who is growing up and maturing, it's important that at every opportunity, we teach them how to manage their lives."
It's not the first time Mora has counseled Rosen about the image the junior has created as a two-year starter for the Bruins. Rosen is considered one of the elite passers in college football, and a top draft prospect. He could be eligible for the 2018 NFL Draft if he elects to file for early eligibility after the season.
Mora, to be sure, remains the biggest of Rosen fans. He believes Rosen would have been the No. 1 overall draft pick in 2016 had he been available, and doesn't mind that he speaks his mind. He just wants Rosen to think ahead about the power of his platform.
"There's this thing called freedom of speech in the United States of America. Part of the learning process is sometimes saying things that come back to bite you a little bit. That doesn't mean you can't have opinions, it doesn't mean you can't work behind the scenes to try to make things better for everybody," Mora said. " ... He is an empathetic young man who cares deeply about his teammates. He realizes that not all of his teammates have had the opportunities he's had in life. He wants to try to increase those opportunities for them. ... Everything Josh says comes from a very, very good place."
Rosen also fired back at scouting critics who have questioned his love for the game. NFL scouts will be evaluating Rosen on every level this fall as he enters his third year as a starter, coming off of surgery on his throwing shoulder. Rosen has certainly shown he'll be himself and wear his feelings on his sleeve. But when NFL clubs evaluate a top quarterback as the potential face of the franchise, there can be a fine line between personality and abrasiveness.