Gregorak left to pick up pieces

2010-07-21T00:13:00Z 2010-07-22T00:15:25Z Gregorak left to pick up piecesBy FRITZ NEIGHBOR of the Missoulian missoulian.com
July 21, 2010 12:13 am  • 

Ty Gregorak's voice can carry all the way from the turf in Washington-Grizzly Stadium to the "M" on Mount Sentinel, and it often did in his seven years of exuberantly coaching the Griz linebackers.

Given the style it's perhaps easy to imagine, after the story broke that Gregorak had been arrested for vehicular trespassing and theft in Colorado in late April, that his "all-ahead-full" style had run him, Ty-tanic style, into an iceberg.

Now, after the charges were dropped last week, all Gregorak can do is pick up the pieces. Hindsight being 20-20 he figures now, as he sits unemployed in Spokane, that he had other options besides returning a gun, a wallet, a bottle of cologne and other items to their rightful owner.

"If I dump this stuff I'm still employed and my name isn't smeared through the mud," he noted Friday. "I felt like at the time that the right thing was get this guy his stuff, and maybe he can fill in the missing pieces."

So after finding the items in his hotel room after a night out with friends, he did an Internet search of Joseph Benedetto's address and returned the stuff. He figured, or at least hoped, that things ended there.

"I get to the golf course and tell the guys the craziest story they've ever heard," he said. "Some of them called it a ‘The Hangover' type of deal, and it sort of was."

Except there were no friends or Polaroids to fill in the gaps. Gregorak still doesn't know how he ended up with the property. Security cameras at his hotel showed he wasn't carrying anything when he checked in that evening.

Footage from another security camera, near a strip club, was supposed to be more damning. He was allegedly turned away, twice, by Benedetto, a bouncer.

Gregorak finally saw the tape around June 25.

"I kind of just kept looking... I was kind of waiting to see me come in the picture," he said, but he never appeared, though someone was turned away.

"I was wearing a T-shirt, blue jeans and flip flops that night," Gregorak said. "This guy's wearing a hoody, he's smoking a cigarette, he's wearing tennis shoes. Almost two months had gone by, and you think, ‘Has anyone looked at this tape?' This guy doesn't look anything like me."

The gaps remain, though one thing is certain: Between the warrant being put out for his arrest and the Boulder County district attorney's office saying, "Never mind," he lost the only job he's had since his college playing career ended.

Gregorak was among a nucleus of coaches who followed Bobby Hauck from UM to UNLV, but UNLV athletic director Jim Livengood said on May 12 that Gregorak wouldn't be back.

It was Hauck who recruited Gregorak to CU, and it was Hauck who helped get him into coaching.

"There was maybe two years where I didn't wake up and see Bobby yelling at me," he said, fondly.

Gregorak is painfully aware how things have turned. He calls his DUI in Minnesota a year ago an event "that I absolutely feel ashamed for," and he is going through a divorce. But he steadfastly believes he did nothing wrong in Boulder in late April.

"I never lied to anybody," he said. "I never said anything inaccurate. I just told them what I knew."

Through all of this, possibly what hurts the most is the idea of not coaching football this fall.

"I didn't know what depression was," says the 31-year-old. "I feel like if you asked a linebacker, none of them would say I'd ever had a bad day."

Now he was having some. He found himself talking to Mike Price, the deposed Alabama coach who now runs the program at UTEP, for a half an hour this summer. It helped.

On the phone Friday, Gregorak was chipper and positive.

"Hopefully I can look back on this and say, ‘Hey, this is the best thing that ever happened to me,' " he said. "I don't think there's too many people who've done great things in their life, who haven't been knocked on their ass once or twice.

"I know that I made mistakes, and I know that we can all screw up. But life goes on. We've all got it pretty good, and I'm excited to start over."

Fritz Neighbor can be reached at 523-5247 or at fneighbor@missoulian.com.

 

Copyright 2015 missoulian.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

No Comments Posted.

Missoulian Civil Dialogue Policy

Civil Dialogue Policy for Commenting on Missoulian.com

We provide this community forum for readers to exchange ideas and opinions on the news of the day. Passionate views, pointed criticism and critical thinking are welcome. Comments can only be submitted by registered users. By posting comments on our site, you are agreeing to the following terms:

Commentary and photos submitted to the Missoulian (Missoulian.com) may be published or distributed in print, electronically or other forms. Opinions expressed in Missoulian.com's comments reflect the opinions of the author, and are not necessarily the opinions of the Missoulian or its parent company. See the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Our guidelines prohibit the solicitation of products or services, the impersonation of another site user, threatening or harassing postings and the use of vulgar, abusive, obscene or sexually oriented language, defamatory or illegal material. You may not post content that degrades others on the basis of gender, race, class, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, disability or other classification. It's fine to criticize ideas, but ad hominem attacks on other site users are prohibited. Users who violate those standards may lose their privileges on missoulian.com.

You may not post copyrighted material from another publication. (Link to it instead, using a headline or very brief excerpt.)

No short policy such as this can spell out all possible instances of material or behavior that we might deem to be a violation of our publishing standards, and we reserve the right to remove any material posted to the site.

Add Comment
You must Login to comment.

Click here to get an account it's free and quick

Montana coach Bob Stitt: 'We expect to win them all'

First-year Montana Grizzlies football coach Bob Stitt sat down with The Gazette at a stop in Billings. Stit…

Montana coach Bob Stitt talks offensive philosophy

Montana coach Bob Stitt talks offensive philosophy

First-year Montana football coach Bob Stitt talks about his offensive philosophy, including …

Prep Extra: Frenchtown pitching machine Morgan Ray

Prep Extra: Frenchtown pitching machine Morgan Ray

Frenchtown's Morgan Ray has helped the Broncs capture two straight State A titles while buil…

Prep Extra: Corvallis' D.J. Pekoc chases elusive tennis state singles title

Prep Extra: Corvallis' D.J. Pekoc chases elusive tennis state singles title

Corvallis tennis standout conquered the doubles discipline as an underclassmen with a State …

Griz Tracks spring wrap-up: See you in the fall

Griz Tracks spring wrap-up: See you in the fall

Griz Tracks guys AJ Mazzolini and Kyle Sample highlight the best of Montana football's sprin…

Coach Stitt and his players talk about the Grizzlies' spring scrimmage

Coach Stitt and his players talk about the Grizzlies' spring scrimmage

Montana head football coach Bob Stitt, quarterback Brady Gustafson and defensive end Tyrone …

Prep Extra: Loyola's Sadie Crippen aims for golf gold

Prep Extra: Loyola's Sadie Crippen aims for golf gold

Loyola Sacred Heart Sadie Crippen finished second at the State B golf tournament in each of …

Griz Tracks: QBs, defense the hot topics to start spring

Griz Tracks: QBs, defense the hot topics to start spring

The Griz Tracks guys are back to chat spring football as Montana has about three weeks of pr…

Going to prom with a little help from the N.Y. Jets

Going to prom with a little help from the N.Y. Jets

NEW YORK (AP) – This was one touchdown of a promposal – with the help of the New York Jets.S…

Montana vs. NAU game-ending fracas

Montana vs. NAU game-ending fracas

2015 Big Sky Conference Semifinal:Montana vs Northern Arizona in Missoula, MT 3/13/15Sequenc…

Featured Businesses

Find events