- DC Area
Yep, agree with this. I mean, clearly Whitman personally wronged IdahoIllini at some point, but for everyone else’s benefit, recall it was springtime and we were picking up the pieces following a player abuse scandal. Being able to land a coach with 1) an impeccable reputation for professionalism 2) high visibility and name recognition in Chicago and St. Louis and 3) the ability to shed our albatross of never having an African American head coach in either revenue sport was a truly incredible feat considering it happened at a time when most schools are hiring basketball coaches. You can quibble with the results - and I have - but you can’t argue that in terms of the intangibles in play, Lovie Smith, at the time he was hired at Illinois, was a bet a good AD would make 9.5/10 times.
I was completely wrong on the Underwood hire. At the time I thought t was great. I thought he could coach guys up even if he didn't recruit well. However, the regression this year really has we worried that the program is going the opposite direction. My main concern is that the program isn't attractive to other coaches.