Senior Writer

Miami can grab Martin, U-turn program if it commits


Almost every high-major program pays a great salary -- most have nice facilities. So if you're wondering why North Carolina State, Missouri and Tennessee had issues luring the big-name coaches with the glorious résumés their fans publicly desired, that's a good place to start.

The cons of leaving a good job outweigh the pros these days.

Sources say Frank Martin would be willing to move back home to Miami if the 'Canes get serious about hoops. (Getty Images)  
Sources say Frank Martin would be willing to move back home to Miami if the 'Canes get serious about hoops. (Getty Images)  
Consequently, most attractive candidates simply use coaching vacancies to get more money and better resources from their current employers, then they sign new deals and release a statement about loyalty. If I've seen it once, I've seen it as many times as Debbie Yow saw it over the past month. But I'm not here to joke about how hilarious it is that the North Carolina State athletic director paid Parker Executive Search $90,000 to help land a coach (Mark Gottfried) I could've hired for her with a single text message two weeks ago, because the truth is that coaching searches in this era are difficult even for realistic and clear-minded ADs.

But Miami's coaching search?

This one doesn't have to be difficult at all.

If the school will finally commit to seriously funding its basketball program, Miami can, in the span of a week, go from losing a coach who never had a winning record in the ACC to landing a coach who has done nothing but win in the Big 12. Yes, Miami can have Kansas State's Frank Martin. All Miami has to do is secure the funds and make the call.

Martin won't say this, of course.

Why would he?

But multiple sources told that the Miami native, though happy in Manhattan, wouldn't pass on the opportunity to return to his hometown if Miami wanted him and committed to being a program that can realistically expect to compete in the top half of the ACC -- meaning Miami would have to pay Martin and his assistants competitive salaries and increase its basketball budget. Whether Miami is interested in doing that remains unclear. But all things even close to equal, Martin would definitely leave Kansas State for Miami. Anybody telling you otherwise should not be believed.

"He'd walk on coals to get there," once source told "That's his home."

So what we have here is a defining moment for Miami basketball.

It's time for the school to decide what it wants to be.

If Miami wants to be a program that can't record a winning league record, Miami can just keep doing what it's been doing because that's what the last nine seasons have produced -- zero winning records in league play. But if Miami aspires to ever be more than what it is, now's the time to make a move and go get Martin -- the son of Cuban immigrants who has led KSU to three of the past four NCAA tournaments while never finishing worse than fourth in the Big 12.

Miami can use a natural lure to make a home-run hire just like Arkansas did with Mike Anderson.

It's a rare opportunity in this era of mostly difficult coaching searches.

My advice is not to waste it.

Gary Parrish is a senior college basketball columnist for and frequent contributor to the CBS Sports Network. The Mississippi native also hosts the highest-rated sports talk radio show -- The Gary Parrish Show -- in the history of Memphis. He lives in that area with his wife, two children and a dog.

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