Saturday, March 16, 2013

So who will be next at SJSU?

Will it be sacrificial lamb or saviour next in the proverbial barrel as the new San Jose State University head basketball coach?

Only time can answer such a question but, as expected, there sure are a lot of names being bandied about on the various message boards.


* Assistant Bob Cantu of USC

He was working miracles at USC until the last few games, certainly knows and is known in the Spartan recruiting territories, so maybe. He's outlived a number of USC coaches so whoever is the new guy for the Trojans may just keep him. The Cal State Fullerton job is now open and landing Cantu would be a very good pickup for the Titans.

* Head Coach Joe Callero of Cal Poly

 He has inserted life into the Mustang program and did well previously at Seattle.

* Assistant Paul Fortier of Washington

With a Pac-12 Washington pedigree, a lengthy history of playing overseas and -- don't discount this factor -- being a Bay Area native, there's a lot to like.

* Assistant Justin Hutson of UNLV

No track record as a head coach but current involvement with the Running Rebels and San Diego State prior to that, plus recruiting chops -- it's hard to find a negative.

* Head Coach Greg Kamansky of Cal Poly Pomona

A Coach K in San Jose sounds tantalizing but will the hiring of a D-II winner initially produce energy within a moribund fanbase?

* Ernie Kent of...

If you can't succeed at Phil Knight U with all those resources ...

* Head Coach Don Monson of Long Beach State

Yes, it would be a major step up in conference but he just may soon be getting both better ($$$) and more attractive (renovations versus having to lay a foundation from which to build) scenarios to rescue.

* Assistant Coach Eric Musselman of Arizona State

With a lengthy family history of coaching, he was the head coach of the Warriors and the Kings NBA franchises and has family in the East Bay. There wouldn't be anyone scratching their heads and asking who is this guy? Imagine the press coverage from the get-go.

* Assistant Craig Neal of New Mexico

Only if he brings his son (who has signed with St. Mary's) -- just kidding. He certainly would need a vaccine to act as an antidote to the facility shock he would encounter. Neal interviewed for the Colorado State opening last year that went to Larry Eustachy.

* Head Coach Randy Rahe of Weber State

The Mountain West is attractive but right now or with maybe one more very successful season, he just may not need to hire on at lower-than-low in standing program. He was 'involved' in the Colorado State opening -- not sure if he interviewed. His Weber contract runs through 2017 but who knows if it contains a poison pill.

* Head Coach Joe Scott of Denver

Every coach will listen but how many will depart from being a top championship contender in a new league next season?

* Head Coach Wayne Tinkle of Montana

All he does is win championships and go to the Big Dance despite never having major talent. But the Big Sky Conference is not the Mountain West. Tinkle interviewed for the Fresno State opening but later withdrew -- Texas assistant Rodney Terry got the job. His daughter plays basketball at Stanford where she is a senior.


Whoever it turns out to be, it cannot be a retread. Winning the press conference is an essential first step and hiring someone fired from another college head coaching position attaches unnecessary distraction to any announcement of a new coach.

The choice also needs to be someone familiar with West Coast prospects so he and his staff can jump into recruiting mode with the least learning curve time possible.

So who will it be and when will the white smoke be seen floating over Washington Square?

When Gene Bleymeier is ready. If his candidate is free and clear now, it will be soon. If that person is on a staff with games still to play, it will be later. This will more than likely be Bleymaier's last big coaching hire and he would love to go down as the athletics director who f-i-n-a-l-l-y rescued SJSU basketball.

But every day missed is a lost recruiting day and that is figuratively and literally the life blood of any program.

This is magnified in SJSU's case as an injection of talent is a mandatory initial step.

We say go big, or truly don't bother.


Anonymous said...

I'd like a coach from the California State system - I want someone who understands ahead of time what they are getting into. There's alot of unnecessary red tape and BS that coaches in the UC & CSU system have to put up with - and getting the hang of it takes some time. I'd rather have a guy from Cal-Poly Pomona or Long Beach State who understand the challenges involved in building a successful program in the most screwed university system in America.

Anonymous said...

Obviously getting someone with PAC-12 experience would be a catch and then add that Paul Fortier from Washington is from the Bay Area with many contacts there would be a plus. He or his friends and family members probably know many of the potential recruits from that area.

Anonymous said...

I think the current St. Marys assistant coach Rick Croy is one of the better fits for the job. He's had a ton of success as a junior college head coach, and then has helped St. Marys continue their status of success over the years and being a regular in the NCAA tournament. He's young, with energy and is from the bay area. He'd be a good catch for SJSU.