How much did an allleged smear job on the part of the Cleveland Browns influence Texas Tech WR Michael Crabtree slipping all the way to no. 10 overall in Saturday’s NFL Draft?  Tech head coach Mike Leach (above) seems rather perturbed with the damage done to his pupil’s reputation if not earning power, telling the San Francisco Chronicle’s Matt Barrows that Crabtree’s been slandered.

“Michael Crabtree has been more successful as a receiver than that guy has a coach at this point,”
Leach said. ” … Part of the reason is he’s (Crabtree) too shy to be like that.”

Said Leach: “My definition of a diva is someone who’s loud and self-absorbed. Michael Crabtree is the furthest thing from loud that I’ve seen.”

As evidence, Leach noted that the tape he had on Crabtree blocking in the running game was better than the tape of Crabtree making catches. “I think it’s one of the strongest parts of the game,” Leach said. “I mean, to the point where it’s impressive.”

Leach described Crabtree as the “ultimate team player who would serve the 49ers well.” As for Mangini? “Let’s see how all those non-divas do up in Cleveland this year,” Leach said.