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ex­press­ing con­cerns about his safety and pur­chas­ing a gun. A month later, po­lice ar­rested team­mate Carl­ton Dot­son for his mur­der.

In Au­gust 2003, Bliss re­signed un­der pres­sure af­ter se­cret record­ings con­ducted by as­sis­tant coach Abar Rouse re­vealed that Bliss told at least one player such damn­ing words as “I think if we can prove that Dot­tie (Dot­son) and Den­nehy were sell­ing drugs we’ll be out of the woods” and “we can get out of this. There’s no­body right now that can say that we paid Pat Den­nehy. Be­cause he’s dead.”

More than a decade later, Bliss’ pub­lic con­tri­tion about the rea­son be­hind his res­ig­na­tion con­trasts with what he says to Pat Kn­odelis, the Austin res­i­dent who di­rected “Dis­graced.”

“He (Den­nehy) was sell­ing drugs,” Bliss told Kn­odelis in the film. “He sold to all the white guys on cam­pus.”

“Pa­trick Den­nehy was sell­ing drugs?” Kn­odelis re­sponds

Bliss: “Oh yeah, he was the worst.”

Kon­delis: “No, I never found that out at all.”

Bliss: “I know, but I’m telling you. But that’s why, but you’ll never be able to use it.”

Af­ter a decade-long ex­ile from a coach­ing ca­reer also marked by aca­demic scan­dals at SMU, Bliss now coaches at South­west­ern Chris­tian Univer­sity in Ok­la­homa. Rouse, his for­mer as­sis­tant who played for Bay­lor, never coached again in a telling cir­cum­stance that re­veals how loy­alty mat­ters more than ethics in big-time col­lege ath­let­ics.

“I know what fake redemp­tion looks like, and I know what real redemp­tion looks like,” says Rouse, who is now an ed­u­ca­tor in the Texas prison sys­tem.

And so do those who have now seen “Dis­graced.”

“Dis­graced” will show again March 14 at 9:30 p.m. at Alamo Ritz 1 and March 16 at 1:30 p.m. at Zach The­atre. It will air on Show­time later this month.

Ger­man wrestling film re­veals uni­ver­sal truths, with­out the sen­ti­men­tal­ity: A muf­fled grunt while strain­ing against an op­po­nent. The smack of skin against a plas­tic mat. The shouts of en­cour­age­ment from coaches perched on the edge of a nearby chair.

First-time Ger­man di­rec­tor Anna Koch lets the senses form the sound­track in “Win By Fall,” a doc­u­men­tary fol­low­ing a group of young fe­male wrestlers in the Ger­man state of Brandenburg that made its North Amer­i­can pre­mier Sun­day at the South By South­west Film Fes­ti­val.

Like most sports, there’s a uni­ver­sal lan­guage of sorts to wrestling: The ath­letes fret over weight, they suf­fer in­juries in train­ing, and the coaches have cau­li­flower ears. But the dif­fer­ences be­tween youth wrest­ing in the U.S. and in Ger­many are no­tice­able.

Like most Euro­pean youth sports, the Ger­man wrestlers live and study at acad­e­mies away from home. They un­dergo group psy­cho­log­i­cal-anal­y­sis ses­sions, a uniquely Teu­tonic way of work­ing on team chem­istry.

The film­mak­ing it­self also con­trasts with the in­dus­try stan­dards here in the States. In a U.S. doc­u­men­tary, a sig­nif­i­cant win comes with up­lift­ing mu­sic meant to direct our emo­tions.

In “Win By Fall,” such a tri­umph arrives with hugs, tears and — per­haps most of all — re­lief.

But the anx­i­eties and ac­com­plish­ments will res­onate with ath­letes and sports fans re­gard­less of na­tion­al­ity, and isn’t that re­ally the point?

“Win By Fall” will show again Thurs­day at Alamo Ritz 2 at 6 p.m.


Dave Bliss re­signed un­der pres­sure as Bay­lor’s men’s bas­ket­ball coach in 2003.

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