Irish Times - GAA Articles


MH was great, despite all, but he’s not any more. He is now a hindrance to Tyrone. His refusal to change from ultra defensive football, despite all evidence, is not the way forward.


Damaging what would have been a tremendous legacy - up there with one of the best coaches ever.
That said, as @Rochey has pointed out, the man has had tremendous grief to deal with over the last number of years. Coaching Tyrone is probably somewhat therapeutic for him - not that that is enough reason to stay on.


I used to hold Harte in high regard too but the day he provided a character reference for a man who admitted sexually assaulting a woman and ejecting her from a van when she was half-naked I lost all respect for him.

How he could put his loyalty to a rapist ahead of empathy for another daughter or family who had such horror bestowed on their daughter is beyond me.

Given the horror his own family had been through, I can’t fathom how he didn’t think of the victim and her family and the impact his reference for the rapist would have on them and the case.


Seems Mickey is loyal to the core when it’s comes to looking after guys who have played under him .


I’ve never heard that story, and if I did, I don’t remember it. Can you point me in the right direction where I can read about it?


Have to say I’d never heard about it either,


It’s clearly not a simple issue. And a character reference in these instances is simply what one person knows of another. It’s not MHs role to judge here. He was asked for a reference, he gave it. It’s up to judge and jury to decide on the case. That’s how it works or else we all just take law into our own hands. Furthermore MH would most likely not have known the full facts and obviously the outcome of the case at the time.
This is life, not as simple as many would like it to be.


The guy pleaded guilty. The full facts would be known in advance of the character reference. It’s Harte’s role in that instance to make a decision of conscience whether or not he should provide a character reference with a view to helping to minimise the sentence the guy would get. In this case it worked, the judge referenced the character reference as one of the mitigating factors for giving a lenient sentence.

There is no mystery here, it was a disgusting act in the first place and Harte’s involvement in the case sickened me. As I said he chose loyalty to a rapist over empathy to a young woman who was attacked, bizarre.

Speaking after their mother’s abuser was jailed, two of her children said their family hoped to “piece our lives back together again”.

"We are so proud of mummy for making the decision to take this on, not just for herself but also to protect other females.

“We are disappointed by Mickey Harte’s involvement and we would like to be left alone now to nurse mummy back to good health, physically and mentally.”

But he’s a great man really is Mickey.


This ‘character reference’ shite is pure classism. Is is a ploy invoked by the rich and middle-class to remind the judge that ‘My boy is like you really. Same background. Similar ethos. That little bit of rapey behaviour …totally out of character really. He’s a fine young man with his whole future ahead of him’. It’s the same as the rugby character witnesses in the north. Puke. The gas thing Is, technically the judge and jury are not meant to take character references into account. So why have them so? The woman from Ballymun who got ten years for shoplifting …she really should have had a few character witnesses. Ffs.


great post.


Up until this point in my life, I held Micky Harte up as a pillar of greatness, a bastion of all that is good in mankind. This article that I just read, has shattered that somewhat. Having spoken to him several times both socially and in a professional capacity, I was always taken by him as a decent, honest man. I didn’t think he could do as stated above, especially considering the events that befell his daughter. I’m actually stunned.


Thank you.

That post has restored my faith in humanity, somewhat.


If its the case that he gave the reference knowing there was absolute guilt in the case then I agree I don’t think it was right. Do we know that it was clear-cut? If it was then he shouldn’t have given the reference.


Actually feel the same.


How times have changed, Dubs make big gesture lending Sam to Kerry.


Steak … steak and milk. We’re fcuked now lads …


Pity the kerryman that has to return it with his tail between his legs …


I’m trying to figure out which is worse from a kerry perspective, the 12 point lesson or borrowing Sam from the Dubs. Kinda figure it’s the difference between a hot pin in the left or right eye.


Sam in Kerry these days is as rare as a Celtic Cross in your change …


Tim Murphy, the chairman of the Kerry County Board, revealed how he and Mikey Sheehy had smuggled Sam out of Croke Park in a black plastic sack. They had arranged the handover with the Dublin management, but did not want to be seen with the cup after such a defeat.

I had to read this twice to make sure I didn’t imagine it , it’s like something out of father Ted.