Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Remembering Purnell's words

Clemson's long-time struggles for college basketball relevance appear to be a self-fulfilling prophecy.

Here's what former coach Oliver Purnell -- who abruptly left Clemson this week for DePaul -- said when he was hired by the Tigers in 2003.

"First and foremost, keep the coach," Purnell said, when asked how the school might raise its basketball profile. "There's this perception that Clemson hasn't won. Rick Barnes? He's not bad (three straight NCAA appearances from 1996 to 1998). Cliff Ellis won the ACC regular season with Elden Campbell and Dale Davis. Bill Foster took them to the final eight."

Purnell was right about those three of his predecessors. He then re-built the Tigers program to the point where it had played in three consecutive NCAA tournaments (albeit without a victory). Clemson hadn't been to tournament since 1998 prior to his arrival.

But Purnell's successor -- whomever that will be -- will be Clemson's ninth coach since the ACC was formed in 1953. Of the league's eight original schools, only Wake Forest has had as many since then.

For a program that still has never won an ACC tournament, it's time to start over. Again. -- David Scott


Anonymous said...

Well, that's because OP is a loser that could NEVER win in the DEAN DOME baby! And he never will! Go Heels!

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, OP did not get to play in the DEAN DOME this year baby because, as you know, he would have waxed the holes. That is the definition of cursed.