Saturday, April 7, 2007

Shuffling the Deck

In the last week (even 24 hours) there have been a lot of coaching changes in the world of college basketball. Some, a little more surprising than others...Here's what went down and what I think about it. I want you guys to drop some comments letting me know what you personally think about any or all of the moves that have been made.

Billy Donovan stays at Florida

This surprised a lot of people, but really not me. I think I would have done exactly the same thing. He's got a great relationship with the AD down in Gainesville and a great dynasty in the mix. He's been to 3 national titles and won two (in a row mind you). All be it he is losing a lot of players but I think winning back-to-back titles will bring in the recruits a little. Rumor has it that he is going to get a much deserved contract extension that is going to make him the highest paid coach in college basketball- as he should be. Now, for virtually the same money, less expectations, friends, relationships, etc.- it makes perfect sense to me that he stayed and I am happy for him. Kentucky is a great job, but Billy is the kind of guy that can make Florida that next big job. He's going to put that job on the map, right up there with the coaching job in Lexington.

Billy Gillipsie is the new coach of the Kentucky Wildcats
I think this was a pretty good hire. Kentucky was in a pretty tough spot because once Donovan fell through there was no clear-cut #2 guy for the job. He had a great year last year, but coaching in College Station is a lot different from coaching in Lexington. I watched the whole press release/interview this morning and I do like the guy. He seems like he's ready and can handle it...but we'll hafta wait to find out.

Dana Altman teases Arkansas Razorbacks
I agree with Complete Sports wholeheartedly when he says, "The whole Dana Altman situation was just strange. Hey, I think it's fine that a guy makes the decision to stay where he's happiest... too bad though that he couldn't have made the decision before he decided to accept the Arkansas job." --I'm sure he didn't mean to be rude or cause any problems or whatever he's probably just a bit indecisive. Regardless it just looks kinda bad.

Tubby packs his bags for the Twin Cities
In my opinion this was the best hire of the group and the best possible hire for the situation. Minnesota could not have done any better on this one. This guy brings with him the know-how to win and win immediately. Also, this is going to breate life and excitement back into the program completely. This is going to sell tickets and put fans in seats. Major props to the University of Minnesota Athletic Dept. on this one.

John Beilein packs bags for Michigan
This is a great hire for Michigan. He fits them perfectly. Had it not been for the signing of Tubby to the Gophers this could have been the biggest offseason move in the Big Ten. But for now this signing sits in the shadows of Mr. Tubby Smith. Oh well, I think he'll do well there. It's not an easy place to recruit to, nor with very nice facilities but I know he can win there.

Bob Huggins is goin back to West Virginia
Bob Huggins, in quite the shocker, leaves KSU to coach at his alma mater WV. To me this one didn't make a lot of sense. I mean sure, yea, he went to school there. That's really cool. What about KSU? What about the great recruiting class he's bringing/has brough it? I mean seriously, CHECK THIS OUT! You have Bill Walker coming back from injury next season, and a the #1 PF as ranked by and McDonalds All-American MVP Michael Beasley committed among some other really great players. This just sort of puzzles me. Now what about these players? How many stay with KSU, and how many bolt? Also, how many could possibly be following Mr. Huggins out East? If I am KSU I'm pissed about this one. Because they gave him a shot when no one wanted him and he was pretty quick to turn his back to them.

Are there any other hirings you want to discuss? What do you think about the hirings above and my opinions?--> Just drop a comment or shoot me an email.


ming01 said...

First off, Kentucky would pay Donovan more... still the best coaching job in the country. And what Dana Altman did is a slap in the face to Arkansas... they do not deserve that one bit. And Huggins was prolly drunk again when he decided to leave KSU.

the sports scoop said...

I am disgusted by Huggins leaving KSU. You did a great job of describing some reasons why he shouldn't have left. Another is the fact that he has been recruiting Beasley for years to go to whatever school he was coaching at. Beasley was going to go to Cincinatti if Huggins was there and when Huggins went to KSU, he stayed loyal and followed him. Then, Huggins turns his back on him like that. That's just horrible.

~Erin~ said...

Speaking as a student at Creighton, I know firsthand that the entire community of Omaha is estactic to have such a wonderful coach like Altman back only 24 hours after thinking we had lost him. That being said, I do agree that it wasn't very professional to accept a job publicly like he did and then go back on his word in such a short time. But I think "a slap in the face to Arkansas" is a little harsh. He has to do what is best for his family and he didn't do what he did with the intention of hurting Arkansas in any way. Besides, reports came out later about 2 players from Arkansas being caught using drugs and another being on academic probation. After hearing about that, who wouldn't want to go back to a great team of guys like those at Creighton?