Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Coaching Search Strategy?

Seton Hall Coaching Search

All I will say is you get what you pay for. If you want to pay what a good mid level coach in the A10 or Missouri Valley earns, you will get that type of coach. It could work out well and that coach could be a potential super star. But at the price they wish to pay they might just wind up with what they have always had since PJ left. a good coach who will lead SHU to a middle of the pack finish and celebration.

Lets also talk candidates. Why even settle for a person bringing things to the table you had in the past two coaches. Now is the time to step out of the box and hit a home run. This is a time to invest in your program by taking a chance on someone who might be controversial but will help you take the curtain down at the arena because attendance will increase.

Seton Hall is not a good job on paper, it is a GREAT JOB on paper based on many factors I have discussed in the past. Seton Hall needs a super star coach who will make Seton Hall his final stop. If they do not do this now, the road to recovery will be long and hard. Look at Willard, Rice, HS Coaches, and others who might jump at $500,000 (alot to me but not to coaches in demand). But remember there are some real winners out there including Bob Knight (if he wants to coach), Fran Frachello (sp) who regardless what anyone says will win wherever he coaches and would be great at SHU, Seth Greenburg, Steve Lavin, PJ, and others not mentioned who would bring instant credibility to the SHU basketball program. This is not a knock on the mid major guys mentioned, just high praise for the potential of the SHU Basketball program.


This is why I like the fact Fred Hill was not replaced. Short and simple. If you are not getting a super star replacement, why bother when there is improvement in the program.
AAU and Travel Team People Speak With St. Johns.

This is one of the most interesting developments I have seen in all my years watching basketball. What St. Johns has done is made it clear who they feel are important in the scope of running a successful basketball program. Did they seek out Dick Vitale, Bob Knight, Jay Bilas, Ex Successful Coaches and ADs from successful D1 programs? Not sure if they did but it seems they decided to speak with the guys who are close to the kids and the ones they feel have the most influence. Never thought I would see this happen but it is a new day and some schools are determined to get it right regardless of how they do it.

So what will these AAU and Travel Team guys say? Will they also say that St. Johns and others like SHU and RU need to learn how to bend the rules a bit without actually cheating? Is this the same as puffing a cigarette but not inhaling? Or maybe tasting food you should not eat and not swallowing? I hope they will bring intelligent suggestions to a table that many feel they do not belong. It is a chance to show AAU and Travel Team guys are not what many people think. I have always said many, including Jim Salmon, Gary Charles, Rich Leary, The New Heights People, and many others not mentioned are better than people realize. In fact say what you wish, but I continue to believe and say these guys are doing great things for the most part with our youth and providing opportunities kids would most likely never receive at certain high schools. It remains a huge joke that the real HS season starts in late March.

On the other hand I have to keep it real. Is this a smart move by St. Johns? Will local HS Coaches feel slighted? Why would they meet with the AAU/Travel Team people and not HS Coaches? very interesting and very telling. Personally I think it is a good thing to reach out to the tri-state basketball community including HS coaches and others. But this should be done as part of a State of the Basketball Program Address and Open House. Chance to show off facilities, have a bite to eat, and than have a question and answer. The way it is now set up looks as if the AAU guys are running things, and that might just send the wrong message.

At the end of the day I still wonder if it makes a difference? What can be said that is not already known? You need a coach who is out in the community and can relate! You need to be more visible! Your facilities should be made available to community groups so that kids will become acquainted to the SJU campus and feel a connection! You need a good X and O Coach! You need to hire a local AAU/Travel Team guy for your program! You should provide free tickets to community groups so they can attend games!

Yes we all know the information that will be shared. But here is what St. Johns could do to get the most out of this somewhat controversial meeting. They need to have a list of 5-7 candidates for the open St. Johns Job and ask opinions on each candidate. They could also ask the people in attendance to rank them based on set criteria. That would provide some telling information.
I still remember a high major program hiring a very well known HS coach from a inner city neighborhood as an assistant coach. The person in question had a great HS program and everyone assumed he had great connections. little did they know other coaches respected him as a coach but hated him as a person and would never allow a player to attend the school he coached at. And the rest is history at that particular school.

The same thing applies to coaching candidates at SHU, St, Johns, Fordham, Wagner, and other places. Some of the candidates are not viewed favorably by the local Rec, AAU, Travel Team, and HS Coaches. Hiring the wrong person who has not been right in treatment of local players, etc, is a bad move and a focus group of tri-state basketball people helps with eliminating someone sneaking through the cracks. Just an example is one coach who is excellent had a reputation of being uncomfortable around certain types of players. Great guy and I am not sure it is true, but it has been said.

Well I look forward to seeing how this plays out. Stay tuned!

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