Blog Entry

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

Posted on: December 3, 2009 5:02 pm
Edited on: December 3, 2009 5:09 pm

You're going to hear a lot of names circulating for the Fordham job that opened Thursday, many of which belong to coaches who have been fired at bigger schools. If Fordham wants to go that direction, I wish it luck. But the reality is that jobs like this should nearly always be filled by an assistant on the way up rather than a "retread" on the way down.

Does it work 100 percent of the time?

Of course not.

Nothing works 100 percent of the time just like the ACC doesn't win the Big Ten/ACC Challenge 100 percent of the time. But try to make a list of guys who were fired at big schools and are now doing well at smaller schools, and you probably won't get too far. Former Minnesota coach Dan Monson (now at Long Beach State) is one. Former Michigan coach Tommy Amaker (now at Harvard) might be another. But the list is short, and that's why Fordham should be looking for a young and aggressive assistant who can recruit the New York area, because the young guy who is fighting for his career seems more likely to succeed than the older guy trying to ride some job into retirement.

Just look at this week's AP poll.

There are four non-BCS schools ranked -- No. 17 Gonzaga, No. 23 Butler, No. 24 UNLV and No. 25 Portland -- and three of the four are led by men who were first-time Division I head coaches when they were hired (the other is Lon Kruger, who came to UNLV after a stint in the NBA; former NBA coaches are also good hires, but that's another post for another day). In the "Others Receiving Votes" part of the poll, we have BYU (hired assistant Dave Rose), Memphis (hired assistant Josh Pastner), Dayton (hired assistant Brian Gregory), Missouri State (hired assistant Cuonzo Martin), Virginia Commonwealth (hired assistant Shaka Smart), and Cal State-Fullerton (hired assistant Bob Burton). The only non-BCS schools getting votes that are coached by men who were not hired as first-time Division I head coaches are New Mexico, Richmond and Illinois State, but Steve Alford (New Mexico), Chris Mooney (Richmond) and Tim Jankovich (Illinois State) wouldn't fall under the category of retreads because none of them were ever fired at the collegiate level.

Add it up, and there are 13 non-BCS schools currently getting AP votes.

Nine are led by men who were first-time Division I head coaches when they were hired.

None are led by "retreads."

So the evidence is overwhelming.

And that's why Fordham should hire an assistant, because the retread path is rarely the proper path.

My pick?

Louisville assistant Steve Masiello.

He's from New York.

He's known as a high-level recruiter.

He worked at Manhattan before joining Rick Pitino's staff.

That's the type of guy Fordham should try to hire.

Somebody on the climb, not the decline.
Category: NCAAB

Since: Feb 17, 2008
Posted on: December 4, 2009 12:42 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

Firing Whittenburg is a step in the right direction, they can't let Fontan transfer out though or it's going to get worse.

Since: Feb 17, 2008
Posted on: December 4, 2009 12:40 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

Basketball is a sport, not some character building activity. Fordham is just awful and everyone knows that so they should either leave the A-10 or get better.

Since: Aug 3, 2008
Posted on: December 4, 2009 10:06 am

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

In addition to hiring an up-and-coming coach, looking to be the next Digger Phelps, Fordham should look into getting itself into the Patriot League or MAAC where it actually belongs. They don't have enough going as an athletic school program to be in the A-10.

Since: Dec 2, 2009
Posted on: December 4, 2009 10:02 am

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

There are a lot of assistants out there that would make solid head coaches if not a great one..When your team has been down for years, you may as well gamble on them instead of the more "experienced" coach.  Xavier has had to pick up coaches by the boat load because everytime one steps in and does well, he's off to greener pastures..All these coaches were young and hungry and successful.

I also wonder why assistants at successful programs like Duke won't throw their names into the hats of these smaller programs.. Wojo, Collins..Too scared to do your own thing, or are you both hoping to get the Duke job by default when K steps down??

Since: Mar 6, 2008
Posted on: December 4, 2009 9:22 am

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

From the time Steve Masiello was a walk-on at UK he has worn the mantle of "future great coach". The effort Mr. Masiello has exerted to position himself to succeed in the coaching profession is most admirable. I've always believed Steve Masiello would, like Josh Pastner, someday become a very successful head coach. Why do any ADs ever employ search committees when they could just fire an email to you Gary and get the best suggestion for whom they should hire. Great pick Gary.

Since: Sep 25, 2008
Posted on: December 3, 2009 11:38 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

So, let me get this straight.  Sports is all about who has the biggest gym and the  most money to throw at kids instead of a method to build character in young men and women and to build a bond among students in a school.  My son went to Fordham and I flew up from Alabama to see him and we attended games when they were not vying for the NCAA championship, yet the students went to the game and seemed to enjoy rallying behind their team even when they were losing.
Let's give a different coach a chance to build a program.

Since: Jan 16, 2007
Posted on: December 3, 2009 11:38 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'


Masiello is a brilliant idea on your part.  Well played.

With St. John's still rebuilding, there's no reason to think Fordham can't win in the A10 by making a strong commitment to the NYC area.  Better do it quick because there's a lot of good A10 teams rebuilding right now... they'll be back before too long.

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: December 3, 2009 6:14 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

my pick would Coach Amaker.  I feel that he's a decent coach he just needs that 2nd chance to prove me right or wrong.  I heard that Avery Johnson is a possibility?  I dunno!

Since: Feb 17, 2008
Posted on: December 3, 2009 5:34 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

Fordham should just give up their basketball team. It just gets too embarrassing having this team destroy the A-10's RPI every year. Their gym sucks, they suck, and their name has the word "ford" in it...which sucks.

Since: Jul 27, 2009
Posted on: December 3, 2009 5:18 pm

Fordham would be wise to avoid a 'retread'

Right On, Gary. Manhattan College did it with Lappas, Friscilla, Gonzo and currently Slice.  Plus, Steve went to my HS, Archbishop Stepinac - go Crusaders!  

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