Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday Thoughts, July 11th, 2011

Coaching Vacancies Etc.

Interesting to see how many ex NCAA Coaches who are let go find their way back so easily to  both college and NBA positions. Often they become NBA Scouts, or even NBA Assistant Coaches. I guess it is who you really know more than the job you are capable of doing.

This practice is no different than what happens in corporate America, Govt. and Other industries people apply to for employment. If you know someone, you have a great chance of getting hired. If you are on the outs, or not on the scene, you are often forgotten. Looking at NCAA College Basketball makes me realize the more I look, the more I see so much the same from 20 years ago, as well as so much that needs to be changed.

I mentioned when I started this blog it would not be about the obvious. I am not interested in stats of the winning team, or who won the Championship Game. I want the behind the scene controversial stuff! And trust me, I get a lot of it via observing and emails sent to me, many of which I ignore based on the accusations being even too much for my blog. But today I need to touch base on a few things on my mind including the treatment of Coaches in College Basketball.

It is such a sad commentary watching all the very good coaches not receiving opportunities based on false reputations and folks being such fools they go out and hire unqualified people just to be safe. How does guys like Fran Frachillo, Al Skinner, and other not get positions? How does local guys who could help Big East and ACC schools not get hired while inexperienced guys are snatched up at great salaries based on knowing someone who knows someone.  And lets not forget the big time coaches who influence people in who they hire by calling in favors owed them from years ago. ADs are not forgotten here. The deals many ADs make are ridiculous. I will not even talk about FDU firing Tom Green, getting rid of the end spectator stands, and really running a D3 program and calling it D1. Not the Head Coaches fault., it is the school administration!   Still waiting for the announcement!

I look at schools such as Monmouth University and question the direction they are headed in. They finally had an opportunity to hire a great NJ?NYC based coach and they go out and hire a person with no NJ or NYC connections, and he does not even have a serious NJ or NYC influence on his staff.  Here is where I really get controversial! It takes a lot of vision and understanding to hire a person who could make your program be noticed while creating a winning atmosphere. Fred Hill, Bobby Gonzalez, and Tom Green, all would have been ideal as would have been Al Skinner. Honestly Wayne Morgan, who is at Hofstra  could have moved over there and got the job done in royal fashion as well. I know folks are going to go bananas over me including Bobby Gonzalez in this group. To that I say why not? Guy won wherever he has been. Guy might be a pain in the rear, but it works for him and it worked at both Manhattan and to an extent Seton Hall. I sure would have pulled the twigged on him or any of the others. At that level you take a chance to be great!  OK update on Monmouth. I just learned that King Rice hired Brian reese and Derrick Phelps, both ex NYC HS Stars who most likely have not been in NYC for 15 years. Though it seems like a NYC connection, I am not convinced either of these guys have real NY connections that others might have had. But I remain hopeful for them because both were fine young men and great HS talents.

George Mason did just that hiring Paul Hewett, who was fired from Georgia Tech despite receiving millions in buy out money. I guess as long as you are a "Good" guy and non controversial you will always be OK. And you know Paul will win on that level because he will out think and out coach most of the guys he goes against in the CAA minus the folks at ODU and Virginia Commonwealth. But Paul is one of the real safe guys to hire and he will not be trouble or controversial. And just so folks do not get this twisted, Paul Hewett is a tremendous steal for a school like George Mason. I for one am shocked they got him!

Just hoping for a time when schools, head coaches, and ADs will hire the most qualified people and stop discriminating based on age, reputation, or who a candidate knows. So many super qualified  guys walking around seeking employment and not being given even an interview. Sad!

High School Basketball

Had an interesting comment based on what I wrote about a few players I observed at the Reebok Event at Philadelphia University last week. I really was very disappointed in what I saw from the 2 players mentioned based on the potential each has. Well, one coach, and a coach I respect, from an CIAA D2 school mentioned how much he loved one of the players. And to that I said "And that's exactly the level he looked when I watched him exhibit zero footwork and around the basket offensive skills despite being a superb athlete. Heck kid could go to that CIAA school and become a Charles Oakley type NBA 1st Round Draft Choice! But right now he should be in the gym as I type this blog post.

Other kid has tremendous skills but has not developed the killer extinct needed to become a true high level D1 player at a place such as Syracuse, Georgetown, Villanova, North Carolina, etc. Maybe it is a result of him being so young he has not yet learned how to really compete day in and day out. Lots of guys with great skills in D2 programs and in the Entertainers League at Rucker Park in Harlem.

I hope someone shares this with both kids and they prove me wrong because there is no greater fan of Teaneck

St. Anthony's looks like the team to beat in New Jersey this upcoming season. Interesting how they adjusted from having most of the players from Jersey City years ago to now drawing from other parts of New Jersey and even New York. I am sure the kids went to them as opposed to them seeking these kids out! Bob Hurley is a legend and has done far too much for far too many people for me to think otherwise. I even think he was a catalyst for my son at one point. Honestly I am a St. Anthony's fan as well, though not as much as a Teaneck Fan. Guess soon I will be one of the older guys sitting behind the St. Anthony's bench with a Maroon jacket on cheering lol.

I sure would not sleep on St. Patricks despite them having a new coach. Seems as if there is a great possibility many of the main players will return after all. Now all the new coach has to do is be a good coach. Can anyone say pressure?

My Top 5 in New Jersey (excluding St. Benedict's based on them not being eligible)

St. Anthony's
St. Patrick's
Gil St. Bernard

NY Top 5 New York City (Excluding Rice based on the school closing)

Christ The King
St. Raymond's
Boys and Girls

Best Area Player

Kyle Anderson. I keep telling folks at my age I could average 10 points a game playing with him. I love his game, personality, demeanor, etc.

Most Underrated Area Player

Without a doubt Daniel Dingle at St. Raymond's. He will be special because of his approach to the game and attitude. Plus his brother will make sure he is prepared as will his HS Coach.

Honorable mention is Chris Jones at Teaneck HS. Great grades, great person, great player. As usual the great kid with respect for those around him gets taken for granted. Kid would be perfect role player at a high major program until his senior year when he would bust out and be a stud!

Best Coach

Bob Hurley

Honorable Mention (excluding Bob Commino at Mount vernon based on them not being in NYC)

Tiny Morton at Lincoln, Ron Naclerio at Cardozo, Morgan Sina at Gil St. Bernard, Ruth Lovelace and Elmer Anderson at Boys and Girls, John Mathis at Kennedy, Oliver Antiqua St. Raymond's, Jerome Smart Teaneck.


port side said...

I hate to keep criticizing your comments but I guess I have strong opinions that differ from yours. I would love to know why you keep celebrating clowns like Fran Frachilla and Tom Green?? Did they promise you something by keeping their name in the Blogosphere?? Fran has had 2 big time jobs and could not get the job done. Plus he has code of conduct issues. Why not George Raveling, Jim Harrick and Kelvin Sampson too?? I find it troubling that you don't mention young assistants like Orlando Antigua, Tony Benford(Marquette) or Kevin Ollie who even though has only 2 years of coaching has made a huge impact on UConn in 2 years plus he played 13 years in the pros. I see no reason to give a 52 year Fran Frachilla who has enough baggage to fit in an Airbus a third chance at a major job over Orlando Antigua. You sound like a major suck-up by constantly mentioning them. Tom Green is a clown who averaged 14 wins in a crap league with 10 gimme wins a year. You would think this guy was coach K. by reading you. What makes things even more disgusting is that you would attack a 15 year old kid like Joel for how you claimed he played in a tournament. Yet, you praise these two rejects.

Back to Tom Green. He received no support because a coach who averages 14/15 wins a year on average deserves none. Coached need to do 3 things, lead,win and create a fan base . Tom could not do any of that on his best day.

LFBall said...

I really do not mind what you say. In fact I applaud you for having an opinion. I also respect your opinion as I wish you would respect mine. I happen to know two of the young Assistants you mentioned and agree they are worthy of opportunities. This does not mean I cannot endorse People like Fran and Tom. And for the record if you really knew me you would know I have made coaching friends so mad at me they often do not even speak. Thats because I speak my mind.

A good example is the current FDU Coach who was ONE OF MY PLAYERS many years ago. In fact I like him a lot but not at the expense of a guy who deserved better treatment. And since when has 52 0r 62 been reason not to consider people for career opportunities? Maybe thats the real reason I push guys. And if you think Fran has package, or Tom was an under achiever, you really need to look at the backgrounds when it come to recruiting and coaching for people you think are good candidates. And if you think Orlando would leave about $300,000 to earn $90,000 at a place like Monmouth, you are wrong. The exceptions are guys like the current Manhattan Coach who has big bucks from his dad that enable him to take on a mid major job paying less than he made at Louisville.

back to Tom Green. Tom won games with mirrors at FDU. That school has never provided the correct support to any team on their campus. Tom won despite never getting support. It is easy to win with big time boosters and plenty of money behind you, as well as tremendous support from you administration. Tom never had any of the things mentioned. And trust me I know! Lastly I have no need for anyone to give me special favors, I ask for nothing in return for saying what I do. If I was seeking favors I would be right on that Big-Time Coaches jock straps with many butt kissers in the area. Instead I take on the battle of the forgotten guys. Not only those mentioned but others who have been treated so unfair.

Finally please stop it with the Hernandez crap. If you think I am the only one who feels this way you are mistaken. Plus, I have never attacked his character, ability, or potential. I have only questioned his ability to COMPETE DAILY, which is what the great players do. And getting letters from schools is far from getting a real scholarship offer. And from what I see, he has to really step it up for schools such as Syracuse or UConn to offer him one at this point! But I do hope he learns to compete harder and shows the ability everyone says he has and gets the big-time offers you and he seek!.