Monday, December 17, 2007

You Just Never Know

I guess these two guys should never, ever sit together (but the shlub directly to the bottom-right thought it was a funny picture too).

West Virginia is PISSED today. Their coach, a guy they considered a lifer and a guy who was building something really special in Morgantown, has bolted for greener pastures in Ann Arbor. Once again, the coaching carousel has left two sides to the story - half the fans in this are rejoicing over a savior on the way, while the other sides burn the coach in effigy.

But I can't do it justice. AOL's Ryan Ferguson covers it well today, but no, I don't post this here because of a West Virginia/Michigan/WSU football connection. I post this because of the point of the article is the false sense of security all programs happen to feel about "their guy". Because you just never know, it can happen to you (US) too. Now I don't think Wulff will up and bolt at the first moment of success......of course you never know.......but I'm more thinking about you-know-who:

I know, I know. It's far too early in the year to be paranoid all over again about the hot young coach looking elsewhere. We're not even into Pac-10 play yet, and there's so many twists and turns that will happen as the year grinds on. But that AOL article today got me thinking about how many schools around the country have felt like "nah, not OUR guy, he'll never bolt" to suddenly waking up to rumors and press conferences and stories about private planes with our coach on it. The whole Rodriguez thing reminded me a lot about Mike Price and how he left on the cusp of a BCS bowl. I don't want to rehash the whole fiasco, the burnt bridges, etc, we've beaten that thing to death. And although the whole Price-to-Alabama thing drug out for about a week of rumors and such, and this Rodriguez thing started on a Friday and was over by Sunday night, but still, it goes to show that no matter what program you are, no matter who your coach might be, no matter what bowl you are about to play in, you just never, ever know.

All I do know? As this hoops season gets into the meat of the schedule, I'm going to constantly remind myself that things are absolutely great RIGHT NOW, and I'm not going to wring my hands over Tony bolting. Sure, he says all the right things, but let's be serious, every big-time job that comes open this spring/summer and Tony's name will be thrown into the rumor mill. Even if he's not a true candidate, the media will at least throw his name against the wall and see if it sticks. What if Coach K is sick and tired of the back problems and decides to call it a career at Duke? What if Roy Williams gets another One Shining Moment at Carolina, and decides at his age, it can't get any better, so enough is enough? When you are that young and that good, it's only natural that you will be on every AD's radar if you are looking to implement a great program. So brace yourselves, because we all know it's coming.

As a true fan, I'm going to embrace the "precious present" and not fret over what the future may bring. I'm going to enjoy this as much as I can, because we may never get back to this spot again (seriously, we're #6 in the nation and undefeated right now!?!?!). I look at highlights from our 2002 football season or the 2003 Holiday Bowl, and think of how long ago that feels already, and man, why didn't I enjoy it more? I refuse to make that mistake again. I will enjoy this ride, for as long as it can last.


Slowpoke said...

Good pts hawk. Not only going to enjoy TB but also going to enjoy the idea that Wulfie will be here long-term. We can't overlook that fact in this coaching search and who knows if some of these other cats would have just taken the next thing that comes along. Hopeful that stability wins out with PW too.

Gunmetalgrey said...

What a weird picture of Tony. Is that a fark? I cannot believe i haven't seen it anywhere else.

Deep down I am always worried about our coach stability. We are the jilted lover and it goes back to Sherill/Powers and right through Denny (you young guys might not remember but listen to the samoan talk about what he went through back in the day of coach-jumping).

Hooty McBoob said...

The other guy that I'm putting money on to bolt is Sterk. With the national attention the Bennett's hiring made, he has already got to be on the radar and his departure from Pullman could be accelerated by how well Wulff and the football program do over the next couple years. The real feather in his cap would be finding a way to kick the stadium renovation into high gear. I'd be surprised if he were still here in 3 years and downright shocked if he stayed another 5.

Hawk - is Moos our next AD?

Diek said...

TB won't bolt just yet. The guy has way too much character. And, think about Mark Few. That guy could have almost any job he wanted, but he took a lesson from what happened to his predecessor, and stayed put. Smart move.

In another though, what is up with the LOOOONG stretches between basketball games? It seems everyone in the nation is playing but us. And only 12 non-con games? plus 18 more that only makes 30? Arent we 3-4 short of the typical total?

kaddy said...

If Tony can prove that WSU can be highly successful, I think that will help keep him here. The only real reason for him to leave is for more money, or to go back home.

Since you brought it up, you might find it interesting that MP lobbied pretty hard for the job, but after some lukewarm phone calls with boosters, he decided to drop it. Also, another candidate we interviewed? I'll give you a hint, his initials are NC.

Hooty McBoob said...

Norm Charlton?

kaddy said...

Yes, the sheriff.

Hooty McBoob said...

You can not underestimate the power of a nice mullett.

Σ (FormerlyKnownAsBrinkHater) said...

Paradoxically, I think that Tony Bennett leaves if this team doesn't advance in the NCAA tourney. IF Tony was able to lead this group to the Elite Eight or Final Four, why would he go somewhere else?

To coach the uncoachable billionaires in the NBA?

To coach blue chip players at Kentucky or some other elite basketball school?

Seems to me that Bennett is about recruiting system guys. And if he's laid the foundation for a Top 10 program, why would he leave for another program that is NOT currently a top 10 program?

Remember, Kelvin left because he COULD NOT move us into the Top 25 and thought that simply "making it" to the NCAA tourney was the best that he could ever do here.

With Tony, we have a team that has the potential to make a real run in the tourney. Why would he leave?

If he wanted to leave, he would have left last year.

Its really that simple

longball said...

Remember Hootie, Rich Rodriguez turned down "Bama last year and many WVU fans took that as proof he'd never leave either. I think tony is sincere about building something here, his way, but i cant imagine it will last forever. When it comes time to say goodbye, it will be sudden and sad, but perhaps he'll have laid enough of a foundation that we can just plug in one of his top assistants and keep playing.

About the Moos question, doesnt he have some stipulation with UO that he has to pay like a gagillion dollars to ever be AD at a rival NW school? I agree, Sterk is probably going to bounce soon, but not sure if Moos is viable candidate, simply because of the contract he had with the Ducks. Im kinda hoping by that time i'll have the resume in order and the right conacts to finally assume my rightful spot as WSU athletic director. First order of business, bringing back boxing!!!

longball said...

Oops, i said Hootie, but meant theartistformerlyknownasbrinkhater.

atlantacoug said...

I don't doubt TB's sincerety, but I also think he stayed at WSU for this year for a couple reasons:

1. No 'bigtime' school would turn over the keys after one year no matter how good they did(except for NC) considering he inherited all from Dad.
2. I bet he does like it here and his family does too.

I like the Mark Few analogy, but I personally think that Mark Few would be the hottest prospect out there for the very reason that he stayed and sustained success, year after year. Let's hope TB does the same!

Sedihawk said...

AtlCoug, we did hear that Michigan was more than casually interested in young Tony last year. A lot more interested that was alluded to. But that's just rumors 'n' stuff...right?

Mark Few is a great point, but he's treated like a God, loves the area, is paid handsomely for one of the best cost-of-living areas in the NW and oh yeah, hoops is KING at GU. He's got a great gig. But who knows, the Oregon job could come calling and given his roots, that could be very hard to turn down.

And, I didn't want to totally come out and say "TONY'S LEAVING!" I just wanted to say that we better get used to the rumor mill with him, and the Rodriguez thing is scary.

Speaking of Rodriguez, we heard a bad story about how he bolted. If we are mad at Mike Price, imagine how WVU feels? Apparently Michigan never asked for contact with Rodriguez, but it all happened under their noses. Then, Sunday comes and Rodriguez holds a team meeting to tell the players and assistants he's leaving. But after the meeting, he bolts for the airport and takes the private plane back to Michigan, all the while NEVER TELLING HIS AD or PRESIDENT what was up! Meanwhile, he's calling recruits from the plane, telling them he's on his way to Michigan and that they should consider joining him! Back in Morgantown, the AD and President start to hear rumors, but they have no idea what's going on. Finally around 4:00 pm in the afternoon, in which Rodriguez was late for a meeting, a graduate assistant walks in and hands the AD a letter, and says "here you go." The AD opens the letter and it's a short resignation letter to the AD. Rodriguez NEVER had the onions to even tell his boss that he was quitting! And this is a guy who was a true "West Virginia" man? This is an alum who coached his school to something like 60-21 and one play away from playing for the whole damn thing? The divorce is never easy on both sides, but geez, at least show a tiny bit of class to the school that is such a big part of who you are? Bridges BURNED, big-time!

Coug97 said...

NC = Norm Chow?

Anonymous said...

It's all about the change in the landscape in athletics and the opportunities smaller school are getting. Why leave GU when you are favored to win your league year in and year out and thus a shoe in for that all important NCAA tourney.
The problem is that WSU will never be UCLA or AZ. They are established and have a long history to continue nabbing the top recruits every year. Remember this team is going to look tremendously different next year.
If a big boy comes knocking (how about Zona?) it will be hard to turn down.

kaddy said...

That said, Baynes, Rochestie, and Harmeling still provide a pretty good core, and Koprovica(sp) should continue to get more comfortable. Not bad.

Anonymous said...

Is this a gay chat?