Confusing enough headline right? Well, I've been doing a lot of reading online about this hire, and trying to gauge people's opinions about it. It really isn't that hard, as it was big news, and everyone has thrown in their 2 cents about it.
When I've been going around online, I've found three pretty common themes that have been annoying to read:
1. Lack of creativity when breaking the news
Look. I'm not the most creative guy in the world. I try to joke around from time to time to have fun, but I'm more of a numbers guy than an art guy. I'll just put it like that. I've probably read 50-75 headlines that have something to do with being "re-elected", or "starting another term", or some other corny reference to "The Mayor".
Look, I think "The Mayor" is a cool name. But I think it's hilarious when everyone is trying to be witty like this, as it kind of backfires.
2. The Haters
Everybody is an expert out there. They all know that this hire is going to fail regardless. Iowa State is crazy for doing this, and their fanbase are idiots for being excited about this. Right? Getting a guy with no experience is doomed to fail big time. The funny thing is reading that all over, as if this is something that the particular author had just thought up.
Well, ask the Hawkeyes what it's like to hire a former National Coach of The Year. Hell, ask most ISU fans what it was like hiring a guy with some Missouri Valley and NCAA Experience. Experience alone is not the key to a successful coaching tenure at a location.
Coaching moves are risky by their nature. If finding a coach was an exact science, everyone would have good coaches, right? I mean if it's that easy to figure out, then almost every coach would workout. Most people do realize that the ADs are aware they put themselves on the line with these kinds of moves. Jamie Pollard is a smarter guy than most will give credit for.
Amongst the haters are the people who can't believe we didn't hire Billy Gillisipe. I don't care about what he did at A&M or UTEP as much as I care about what he didn't do at Kentucky. People can say that not having been a coach is a red flag. Fine. I can give them that. But I think an ever bigger red flag is a guy who underperformed massivley at a one of the most resource-deep programs in the nation.
Kentucky is a place where you get fired for not getting past the Sweet 16 often enough or something like that. It's not a place that you miss the tournament in a so-so conference.
Gillisipe is a Texan who could recruit the state of Texas, to schools located in Texas. The one job he had outside of the great state of Texas he failed. I don't possibly see how he could've done well in Iowa. Then throw in his past, and you can see how if we hired him, the spin may have even been worse than now.
So if you are a hater, and you throw Gillispie out of the mix who is left? Who is someone who would honestly come to Iowa State? I know of guys I would've like to have, but I doubt they would have left their jobs for Iowa State.
Iowa State Basketball has been a mess to say the least. Maybe doing something crazy, will actually work. Having a different background may help out a lot. The college game has changed a lot, and a lot of the guys out there with experience are having a tough time relating to their players. If you're an ISU fan what do you have to gain by NOT being excited/optomistic? The thing about this hire, is that it has NBA credibility, and you don't have to educate the fanbase on who the coach is. How is that a bad thing? What's the worst that can happen? We can have five more bad years. We just went through four bad years, and I'm pretty sure everyone survived.
If you're not an ISU fan, then I know you're just going to hate. No matter who we hired, people would find something to make fun of Iowa State about.