Tag:hot seat
Posted on: April 13, 2011 12:21 pm
Edited on: April 13, 2011 12:38 pm

Coach Speak: summer may warm ten hot seats

This man must own asbestos underwear

Posted by Eric Angevine

Getting fired is no fun. It's not something you really wish on another human being. But it's a fact of life, and even more so in the high-pressure world of coaching (at any level). These ten men bought a ticket for the ride, so we'll have to be honest in assessing their efforts to date.

The axes that are going to fall this season have mostly dropped already. Fire a guy in late April, and you have a huge mess to clean up and not much time to do it in. We saw plenty of that last season in the Big East, when Fred Hill (Rutgers) and Bobby Gonzalez (Seton Hall) went off the reservation and forced ADs to oust them. In each case, the school got a good coach in place, but it's a lot scarier to do that without the safety net of extra time.

Here are ten power conference coaches who need to recruit well this spring and summer and then actually DO SOMETHING with that talent in order to feel safe and secure this time next season.


Seth Greenberg, 151-103 in eight seasons at Virginia Tech
: Yeah, I know, we say this every year. But here we sit again, with the Hokies juuust missing the Big Dance. I mean, it's admirable what Greenberg has been able to do with the injury issues he's had to deal with, but it's also rather surprising that he hasn't been able to adapt and overcome with the players who stay healthy. Give Brad Stevens last season's Hokie lineup and see if he doesn't win a championship with it.

Jeff Bzdelik, 8-24 in one season at Wake Forest: I feel strange putting a first-year coach on this list, and there's likely no way Bzdelik will be kept on that short of a leash, but man alive, was this hiring a mess. Clemson hired the criminally underrated Brad Brownell later in the year and had a pretty strong season. Wake fired Dino Gaudio for underperforming and got... much worse. Bzdelik is a real cypher - he moves around a lot but doesn't exactly blow the doors off anywhere he goes. He's like bizarro Larry Brown.

I would be remiss if I didn't point out that Miami dodged a bullet here. If Frank Haith hadn't been taken off their hands, this list -- like Spinal Tap's amps -- would go to eleven.

Big 12

Travis Ford, 65-36 in three seasons at Oklahoma State: Really, Ford doesn't seem to be in much danger, either. Then again, who saw Jeff Capel falling so far from grace this season? OSU has had three straight 20-plus-win seasons under Ford and has pulled some big upsets, so fans are probably relatively happy with him right now. Still, there has been a progression of diminishing returns, with the Cowboys going from 4th in the league in Ford's first season, to 6th the next, and now down to 9th. He probably has a couple more years to prove that his system can work, but T. Boone Pickens routinely ogles Bill Self over at Kansas, and that kind of open lust can put strain on even the strongest marriage.

Big East

Stan Heath, 41-54 in four seasons at South Florida
: I honestly can't believe I even have to write this one. Check these numbers: 20-13, 9-9, 9th place, NIT first-round loss. That's Stan Heath's BEST SEASON at USF. He's done a great job of lining up massive inside players that many programs would kill for, and yet he's made no progress in the Big East race. Last season his Bulls won two whole games in conference, dropping to 14th place. That, plus the 8 overall wins, is the lowest win total of his career to date. Not sure anyone's awake over in the ADs office at USF. Then again, this is fine golfing weather.

Big Ten

Ed DeChellis, 117-139 in eight seasons at Penn State
: It might seem a bit odd to put EDC on this list after he finally got over the hump and into the NCAA tournament, but seriously... what now? It took four years of superhuman effort from Talor Battle to achieve a first-round NCAA tourney loss. Now that Battle's graduated, how far will this program fall? I can't answer that question, but I can't imagine things are going to get in any way better without the one sure thing on the Nittany Lion roster next season.

Related links
Bill Carmody, 160-176 in 11 seasons at Northwestern: No, it's not really Carmody's fault that the Wildcats can't make the leap. In fact, his tenure has actually made people pay attention to Northwestern, and to actually believe that the Big Dance curse will finally be broken soon. Carmody signed an extension this year and isn't going anywhere, most likely because the folks at the Northwestern think tank (I'm not being sarcastic) know that a disruption at this point could plunge them back into the dark ages again. Still, by empirical measures, this all looks so mediocre it hurts.

Tom Crean, 28-66 in three seasons at Indiana: I hold a firm belief that Tom Crean is a good coach, and that he is probably the right man to turn Indiana back into a powerhouse. I also hold a firm belief that fans in Bloomington are crazy. Anyone not happy with Crean's rebuilding efforts over the past three seasons will be doubly outraged if he fails to win a Big Ten championship now that he's secured the services of local hero Cody Zeller. You'd like to think that Hoosier fans would direct their anger at the state of the program to Kelvin Sampson and even Bobby Knight, rather than Crean. You'd like to.


Craig Robinson, 40-49 in three years at Oregon State
: Hard to really fault Robinson for the state of the program in Corvallis, but he wasn't hired to maintain the status quo, either. In three seasons, we're still waiting for Robinson to win more games than he loses in any given season, and that shiny CBI trophy (No, I have no idea what it might look like, it could be made of balsa wood) isn't going to make anyone forget that the Beavers dream of more.


Darrin Horn, 50-42 in three seasons at South Carolina
: Horn is young, and South Carolina is not an easy place to forge a sterling career. Still, the wunderkind from Western Kentucky has been easily outstripped by the likes of Anthony Grant at 'Bama and Mark Fox at Georgia. It's not out of the question that Tony Barbee could turn around Auburn quickly, either. The SEC has been largely wide open behind Kentucky, Tennessee and Vanderbilt in recent years, and it would have behooved Horn to take advantage. Now he's behind the curve yet again.

Trent Johnson, 49-48 in three seasons at LSU: My, how exciting 2009 must have been in Baton Rouge! Trent Johnson arrives from a wildly successful run at Stanford, amid expectations that he'll blow the doors off the SEC, since he won't have to worry about the academic profile he had to pursue at the Pac-10 school. In his first season, Johnson guides the Tigers to a first-place finish and an NCAA berth. Just imagine what he'll do with his own players!!! 22-40 overall, 5-27 in the SEC and two sixth place finishes in the West. If you think Horn, a relative rookie, was a disappointment in these circumstances, imagine how people must be looking at Johnson.

Each of these guys can begin the reversal of fortune by landing some recruits over the next few weeks. After that comes the hard part: turning talented parts into a fully-functioning machine.

Photo: US Presswire

Posted on: January 31, 2011 10:49 am
Edited on: January 31, 2011 12:35 pm

Coach Speak: Sidney Lowe is running out of time

Hey Kool-aid! The big red blazer just ain't gettin' it done.

Posted by Eric Angevine

Hot Seat

Prior to the start of this season, I thought Sidney Lowe had a really good chance of keeping his job in Raleigh, despite the fact that new AD Debbie Yow declined to even pay lip service to a vote of confidence in his abilities. Lowe had brought in a stellar recruiting class, headlined by local forward C.J. Leslie, but very strong from top to bottom. More importantly (since freshman make plenty of mistakes), he got Tracy Smith back for his senior season after a flirtation with the NBA draft. With all the pieces in place, the burden fell squarely on Lowe to get the machine running.

The Wolfpack won the early games they were supposed to win, but stumbled in every non-conference statement game they played. Georgetown beat them by 15 at home. A trip to Wisconsin yeilded an embarrassing 39-point blowout. There was a rather close loss at Syracuse three days after that, then a ten-point home loss to Arizona. The roadies would have been acceptable except for that monster score differential in Madison. The home failures were a bit more troubling.

Then the ACC season started, with Smith back from a long injury time-out and Leslie and Ryan Harrow starting to show some maturity. Would things turn around? Oh, no. The only teams the Pack have beaten are Wake Forest and Miami (we'll get to you later, Frank Haith), the two rock-bottom teams in the ACC. The Pack are now 2-5, and they're headed to Duke on Saturday.

I don't think Yow will pull the plug in the middle of this lost season. There would be little point, and such a move could drive some of those talented freshmen away. But a change is gonna come in March, bet your big red blazer on that. Even a big win at this point would seem like a fluke after four seasons of 10+ conference losses every year, and no NCAA berths.

Quotable Coaches

"We had blank expressions on our faces. Guys weren't talking. And that's my responsibility. That's our program. Our program didn't do well here today. And that's all of our responsibilities."

-Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski following his team's 93-78 loss at St. John's
“I thought defensively that they kind of had their way with us late in the game. They had a good adjustment and went really small and spread the floor and with Dairese Gary driving that ball. We needed a second defender to help and get him stopped and he just seemed to find every open man late in this game. [He] made big shots.”

-BYU coach Dave Rose talks about a guard not named Jimmer after an 86-77 setback at The Pit
"At the beginning of the game and the same thing with Ohio State, he has to realize when things aren't open he can't keep going and driving it in there. People scout you and they jam him up. He's got to make the next pass."

-Illinois coach Bruce Weber diagnoses Demetri McCamey's recent offensive struggles

"Pat, I'm telling you, is an excellent coach. I'm talking about from when you look at the technical part of the game how hard they do things. Then, I also know how hard they work and I know how hard he works at it. I really believe they're going to be fine. They're going to get better, his teams always have.

There's so much that goes into being a good team or a good program. And I know this, there's not another program in the country that does it more right than they do. I mean, he's never going to violate an NCAA rule, he's going to represent Texas Tech they way it's supposed to be represented."

-Texas coach Rick Barnes, who has only lost to a Pat Knight-coached team once, praises the Texas Tech head coach

Sometimes, words just get in the way. That's why I'm sharing this fan video of Tom Crean celebrating with the Indiana faithful after beating a ranked Illinois squad:

Photo: US Presswire

Posted on: January 10, 2011 10:25 am

Coach Speak: Roy Williams is a cookie monster

Posted by Eric Angevine

Our video today comes from the A-10. Here, a couple of our television colleagues talk with UMass head coach Derek Kellogg about the Minutemen's 55-50 upset of defending NIT champs the Dayton Flyers.

Quotable Coaches

"I'm sitting here right now, and I feel like I've been inside the cookie jar in the cookie store and stole every cookie out of the jar and every cookie out of the store, and I want to get out of town as fast as I can. It was one of the ugliest W's I've ever been involved with."

-Roy Williams on North Carolina’s narrow  win at Virginia on Saturday


"I use the story that I have a dog. Every time the doorbell rings my dog runs to the front door to say 'Hi' to the person who rang the doorbell. In all the time I've had the dog, it's never been for him. The person that came to the door has never come to the door to see my dog. But that doesn't stop my dog. Every time it rings, he goes. And that's how Will rebounds. Every shot goes up, he goes to the boards. Even if it's not going to come off on his side, if it appears its going in, if its a lay-up, he goes every time, and he's rewarded for that. We want him to rebound like my dog."

-Oakland head coach Greg Kampe discussing forward Will Hudson’s inside presence on WXOU-FM


"They didn't make shots, and I'm sure John is disappointed. But I don't think he'll be disappointed in how they guarded or how they fought."

-Kansas coach Bill Self praises the Michigan team that nearly upset his squad on Sunday


“It’s a major swing. It’s a turnover. It’s taking away a basket from the other team. It’s taking away momentum from the other team and slipping it back to you. I tell the guys, ‘When a guy takes a charge, you’ve got to run over there like you’ve just won the lottery and pick him up.’

-San Diego State’s  Steve Fisher reflects on the value of sub Tim Shelton’s ability to draw offensive fouls


They did a great job on Kemba, forced him into some real tough shots. But coming down the stretch, Kemba Walker is Kemba Walker."

-Jim Calhoun reveals the intricate game plan that allowed UConn to triumph over Texas


“It’s not something she’s looking forward to doing again”

-Bruce Pearl talks about his wife Brandy’s reaction to watching Tennessee lose to Arkansas with him while he is on suspension


Heard a good one from your team's head man? Pass it along to eric.angevine@cbsinteractive.com

Hot Seat

Keno Davis, Providence Friars. The near-misses are not going to cut it much longer. Providence is 0-4 in the Big East after almost beating St. John’s, hanging close to Syracuse and Pitt and then, quite frankly, laying an egg against Rutgers two days ago. Davis’ rapid ascension to the Big East always seemed a bit rash – he served just one (albeit very good) season as head man at Drake – and he still seems to be in over his head in his third season at PC. Davis - son of the great former Iowa coach Dr. Tom Davis – seems to be a very good recruiter. What happens after he gets the kids on campus continues to underwhelm, however. Looking at those four losses again, it seems that the Friars play to the level of their competition; banging with the two ranked league teams they’ve seen, then going soft at the wrong moments to lose to two undermanned teams under new head coaches. Throw in the rash of discipline problems the team has faced during Davis’ tenure, and it doesn’t look good for Keno.

Posted on: December 27, 2010 10:32 am
Edited on: December 27, 2010 10:36 am

Coach Speak: Bob Huggins was a Monk?

Posted by Eric Angevine

Welcome to Coach Speak. It's going to be a regular Monday feature here at the CBS College Basketball Blog. This space will be dedicated to tracking down the best in coaching sound-bites every week. We'll also keep track of moves on the coaching carousel as they happen.

Today, we check out video from the Bob Huggins Show, which aired December 25th at West Virginia Illustrated. I love how Huggy Bear projects charisma and toughness even while slouching in a folding chair wearing a track suit.

Money quote:

“My dad took the job. He didn’t know what they were paying. When he found out what they were paying, he decided maybe I should take the job. It’s Brotherhood of Christian instruction and they take the same vows that priests do. They take the vow of poverty and they want everybody else to live it. I did that for three years.”

-Huggins talks about his coaching start at Walsh College, which played an exhibition game at WVU on December 22

A few other gems from a quiet holiday weekend in college hoops:

"We’ve been 8-4 before, we’ve been 9-4, I'm not trying to make light of it, I'm not trying to make it worse than it is," Izzo said. "If I keep scheduling this way, we're gonna have some losses. ... I’m disappointed. But I've been here before so I know what to do over Christmas. It’s a lot harder work than shopping."

-Tom Izzo following Michigan State's loss to Texas

I hope Santa puts some more patience under my tree. Hopefully Santa puts some toughness and grittiness and meanness under their trees."

-Tony Barbee on his hopes for the 4-7 Auburn Tigers

Eventually, it gets a little bit old going and seeing different places and schools but not winning. Now, these guys just look at it [games against BCS teams] as another game.”

-Maine coach Ted Woodward on a victory at Penn State that capped a four-game win streak

“You know, we were 4-4 16 days ago. A lot of people had written us off. We really came back (through) our cohesiveness and togetherness and just being a tough, gritty team.”

-Butler assistant coach Darnell Archey on the importance of winning the Diamond Head Classic

"I do like where we are as a team. To win three of those four games is good. We're pretty healthy. We're 10-2, we've played a really good schedule. I think we're well prepared for Pac-10 play."

-Washington State head coach Ken Bone after his team lost to Butler in the DHC championship game

"We weren't emotionally where we needed to be at the beginning of the game."

-Mississippi State head coach Rick Stansbury utters the understatement of the weekend following a DHC loss to host Hawaii

Hot Seats

Five coaches who could soon have all the wrong things in common with Mike Singletary.

1. Stan Heath, South Florida. In December, the Bulls are 2-4, beating VCU and Auburn and losing to Florida Atlantic, Kent State, James Madison and Cleveland State. That runs Heath's record at USF to 47-61 in four years. On New Year's Eve, they'll start a brutal stretch of three games against ranked Big East opponents.  

2. Paul Hewitt, Georgia Tech. The Yellow Jackets are 6-5 with losses to Kennesaw State and Siena. Northwestern beat them by 20. To think, Hewitt was actually courted for the Boston College job over the summer. Think the folks on Chestnut Hill are glad they went a different direction right about now? The good news is that Fordham is snowed in, so Hewitt gets a temporary reprieve before a New Year's Eve date with Mercer.

3. Sidney Lowe, NC State. Lowe was on the hot seat all summer, especially after no-nonsense Debbie Yow was hired as the new Wolfpack AD. He won his stay of execution by talking Tracy Smith into coming back for his senior season and landing a stellar class of freshmen. The result? 7-4, with all four losses coming in statement games. An up year in the down ACC is all that's standing between Lowe and the unemployment line.

4. Pat Knight, Texas Tech. These legacy hires never seem to work out in the Big 12. Knight is close to repeating the coaching fate of Sean Sutton, whose career lasted 62 games at Oklahoma State after he took over for his famous dad Eddie. Knight's team is so moribund, they lost to Stan Heath's Bulls at the South Padre Island Invitational in November.

5. Ed DeChellis, Penn State. The Nittany Lions are famous for keeping coaches around as long as humanly possible, but losing to Maine in the Bryce Jordan Center just before Christmas seems symptomatic of the mediocre effort given by DeChellis teams in his seven-and-a-third year run as head coach. 

Getting warmer: Jeff Capel, Oklahoma; Trent Johnson, LSU; Craig Robinson, Oregon State

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com