Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Four coaches Virginia should consider

Dave Leitao’s ouster as Virginia’s coach on Monday caught a lot of people off guard because it doesn’t seem to make sense to pay $2.1 million to buy out a coach in such a difficult economy.

But Leitao’s departure serves as a warning to other coaches with long-term contracts who think their buyouts will save them. Athletics directors are just as eager to preserve their revenue streams as they are to cut costs.

In this case, there wasn’t much confidence that Leitao could generate excitement next season in Virginia’s gorgeous and almost-brand-new arena. Aside from guard Sylven Landesberg, Leitao’s Cavaliers were almost devoid of ACC-level talent.

Leitao’s rotation was so unpredictable that his players’ confidence seemed shattered. And let’s face it, his gruff personality didn’t win him many supporters.

So two years after being named ACC coach of the year, Leitao is being paid not to coach. Funny how these things turn out.

Here’s a list of four current Division I head coaches that Virginia should consider:

1. Jeff Capel, Oklahoma. This would be the dream candidate. The former Duke player knows the ACC well and has done a great job overcoming NCAA sanctions to make Oklahoma a top-10 team. But it might be difficult to get him. It’s a lot easier to win at Oklahoma than it is at Virginia.

2. Bob McKillop, Davidson. If McKillop were ever to leave Davidson, it would have to be for a job at a highly principled academic institution like Virginia. But again, it wouldn’t be easy to convince him to leave, even for an ACC job. Davidson is a wonderful place to coach and live.

3. Anthony Grant, Virginia Commonwealth. Former Florida assistant has Virginia Commonwealth back in the NCAA Tournament and poised for a possible upset of UCLA. He isn’t a proven head coach at the BCS conference level, but he’s a rising star like VCU predecessor Capel was a few years ago.

4. Duggar Baucom, VMI. This is a wild card choice. It is a huge leap from the Big South to the ACC. But Baucom somehow found a way to turn a law enforcement career in Charlotte into a Division I head coaching job. He runs the fastest-paced offense in the nation and coached VMI to a win at Kentucky, for goodness’ sake. Just interview him, Craig Littlepage. You will love him. - Ken Tysiac


Anonymous said...

UVA is a HARD place to coach! God Bless ANYONE who takes that job!

Anonymous said...

UVa is not a hard place to coach- we just want to be competitive. The VMI pick is just wishful thinking.
Thanks for not putting Tubby, he not a UVa kind of guy.I think Grant makes a lot of sense.
They are really good at not leaking news at UVa, so you will probably know the new coach when he's at the press conference

Anonymous said...

How about firing Bobby Lutz? He's a decent recruiter but horrible coach. When he was winning in the late 90's and early 2000's it was because of 3pt shooters that carried the team on their backs (jobey thomas, diego G, etc). He has been during a horrible job. Imagine what Bob McKillop could do with that UNCC roster. Also, he's full of excuses. At the end of every season he blames the bad record on injuries.

Lutz must have pictures of Judy Rose.....Judy needs to grow a pair and fire Lutz ASAP. People (including UNCC grads and students) just don't care about the bball team anymore.

Anonymous said...

How bout Bob Knight for the Virginia coaching position?

Anonymous said...

Noooooo ... UVA is not a hard place to coach:

Leitao was named ACC Coach of the Year after the 2006-07 season
won 51.2 percent of his games
made it to the second round of the NCAA Tournament
received a buyout of $2.1 million

Pete Gillen at U.Va. for seven years
an overall record of 118–93
competed in five postseason tournaments
received a buyout of approximately $2 million

Jeff Jones – SON of UVA Basketball resigned (can’t find buyout amount)
finished his career as Virginia's all-time assists leader
8 seasons as an assistant coach under Terry Holland
led Virginia to six postseason appearances (five NCAA, one NIT),
one regular-season ACC Championship and four 20-win campaigns

... noooo not at all

Anonymous said...

Wherever Capel goes now, he'll be a 4-8 year rental until Coach K retires. Then he'll coach Duke full-time.

Anonymous said...

Capel can't coach himself out of a box. Get off the band wagon. McKillop's not going anywhere.

Anonymous said...

Coaches to consider...Bobby Knight. he`s looking and is a sweetheart to get along with; Dell Curry, the 3 point daddy-machine, Richard Morgan, App State asst, coach; Charles Barkley, he needs to get off the golf course; Matt Doherty since there is love with Carolina; where is Bryant Stith ??

misterglover said...

Definetly go for Jeff Capel...If not him his dad "big Jeff" is here in Charlotte on the Bobcats bench...Anthony Grant is a good option he knows the VA area and seems to be recruiting better players at VCU then UVA's getting as of late...or how about going back to your roots and keeping in "the family" like Carolina & Duke always seem to do and call Dave Odom...he knows the ACC very well, is familiar with the VA,NC,SC area for recruiting and was a long time UVA assistant under Terry Holland before leaving for Wake Forest?!!

Anonymous said...

Take Bobby Lutz. PLEASE!

Anonymous said...

What about Bobby Cremins???