Brad Underwood Named Illini Basketball Coach

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What baffles me is that so many earnestly believe Underwood took this job because Illinois is where he actually wants to be coaching. One only needs to watch the OSU introduction and then the Illinois introduction to see the lip service that he, and essentially all coaches, put on. Everyone wants to believe that their coach is in his dream job, but it just isn't always the case. Hell, we have a head football coach that holds school records here as a player and is basically the King of Stillwater and that dude, Mike Gundy, still flirts with other schools every few off seasons. The breed of coach that is actually coaching in their dream job is a rare one.
No, see, actually we get ALL of this. We lived the Bill Self-Roy Williams-Bruce Weber carousel, which provided a lifetime quota of certain guys calling certain places "dream jobs" or "destinations" or "home."

You, on the other hand, waltzed in here feeling spurned because your first-year coach dropped Hank Iba's name a bunch of times.

Just be happy that Illinois was willing to pay Underwood an amount no one else was willing to and that he agreed. It's a business, and at times it's slimy, but you're exactly right...Underwood will probably lead Illinois to a lot of wins, and he's no stranger to the Big Dance at this point, so things are definitely on the upswing at Illinois...and ultimately, isn't that the point of it all?
I (and others) literally directly responded to the post you are quoting saying "It's about F'ng time we decided to treat this as the business it is." So yes, that's the point. Glad we're on the same page.
 
If Coach Underwood essentially repeats Self's 3 year tenure or Kruger's 4 year tenure before moving on to whatever pastures he feels are greener, I'll be perfectly happy so long as Illinois hires a better coach than Bruce Weber to replace him.
 
Washington, DC
If Coach Underwood essentially repeats Self's 3 year tenure or Kruger's 4 year tenure before moving on to whatever pastures he feels are greener, I'll be perfectly happy so long as Illinois hires a better coach than Bruce Weber.
And agreed. If Underwood gets a better job, that means we're in a great place and our athletic department has finally shown it's willing to spend the money needed to be successful.
 
Ordained Dudeist Priest
Johns Creek, GA
FIFY. I'd even be willing to kick in a little if it got Gottlieb off the air.
Plus all those Okie State fans will be aching in the posterior again in about 4 years after they fire Gottlieb and have to go through all of this again.
 
Ordained Dudeist Priest
Johns Creek, GA
Everyone had shifted to excitement about who might be next. Archie, Crean, Few, Jankovich, Self, Buzz, Scott Sutton, Gregg Marshall, Enfield, Mack, y'alls instate guy Muller, and of course Gottlieb. Lots of fun potential options. Will we swing one? No telling.
Yeah, those will happen.
 
Chicago
When your list ranges from Self to Gottlieb, I think you cover basically every basketball coach in the country.

Probably only 4 names on that list that are realistic: Jankovich, Sutton, Muller, Gottlieb. And maybe a chance at Crean.
 
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I couldn't care less if our beloved is BU's dream job or not. That buyout compounded by BU's age is going to make it real difficult for him to jump ship to greener pastures.
Several million dollars will quickly cause an adjustment to most people's "dreams". Dreams include providing for your family or getting away from a less-than-ideal situation among other things. Only Mr. Underwood knows what his dreams really are. And no one, not even he, knows exactly what he'll do in the future. The Illini have lacked a PRESENT for so long that this feels good as far as it goes right now.
 
What baffles me is that so many earnestly believe Underwood took this job because Illinois is where he actually wants to be coaching....

No OSU fans have animosity toward Illinois (if I were being snarky i'd say "why would we?" but being snarky doesn't seem to go over too well here.).
Does one want to believe the only reason your partner married them was for the money? This may have been the reason, but do you really want to hear that?

Only Underwood knows what he really wants. And he's smart enought to say the right things to seal his deals. Business 101 stuff.

Also, OSU fans have no reason to have animosity against Illinois. Everybody knows we just got telephone service to the back country and the Pony Express has just given way to mail trucks pulled by burros. And we're three hours away from a major city - at least that's what I was told. Have mercy!
 
Logan Square, Chicago
Brad Almighty.

We have ourselves another BAM!
 
I’ve been a visitor here for some time and decided to register to add my 2 cents to the discussion.

So, here’s the take of this novice. In sum, it's that I really don’t get a lot of the outrage.

What exactly is a buyout provision ? Well, it’s a provision that entitles someone to fulfill contractual obligations by paying the other contracting party a stipulated amount of money (i.e., liquidated damages). Once such payment is made, contractual obligations have been satisfied and the contract is terminated. So, the talk about being under contract is irrelevant if the buyout is paid. Ask yourself this: if the buyout is paid could OSU sue Underwood for breach of contract ? For what ?

As to any issues of morality or character, see above. It’s a business relationship governed by a written contract of employment. There are no third party (such as players) beneficiaries of such contract, so any breach of morality or character with respect to employment actions taken can only be between the contracting parties. But the terms of the contract (i.e., the terms of employment) are, assuming payment of the buyout, going to be fulfilled, so, what moral failures or character defects vis-a-vis employment actions are evidenced by fulfilling the terms of the employment contract ?

Well, that's my take and I'm stickin' to it — unless, of course, someone can persuade me otherwise. I'm always willing to consider contrary viewpoints.

I would note the foregoing is, in my estimation, equally applicable to the Bill Self leave-taking.
 
Cary, IL
If Coach Underwood essentially repeats Self's 3 year tenure or Kruger's 4 year tenure before moving on to whatever pastures he feels are greener, I'll be perfectly happy so long as Illinois hires a better coach than Bruce Weber to replace him.
Hey, isn't that about when Billy's contract is up? Perfect timing to make another recruiting trip to Oklahoma! :D
 
As to any issues of morality or character, see above. It’s a business relationship governed by a written contract of employment.
There is more to morality and character than what is enforceable in court. I'd like to launch into an off-topic diatribe there, but I won't.

College sports is a dirty business, but even within that, there are norms. Norms help to keep the whole thing governable. Not leaving a job after one year is one of those norms (not firing a coach after one year is another, incidentally). That doesn't mean it doesn't happen, that doesn't mean Underwood or any other coach who's done it is a bad person, it's just something that's a little gross and tends to bring ill repute on college basketball generally, a sport that generates plenty enough ill repute as it is.
 
Aurora, IL
College sports is a dirty business, but even within that, there are norms. Norms help to keep the whole thing governable. Not leaving a job after one year is one of those norms (not firing a coach after one year is another, incidentally). That doesn't mean it doesn't happen, that doesn't mean Underwood or any other coach who's done it is a bad person, it's just something that's a little gross and tends to bring ill repute on college basketball generally, a sport that generates plenty enough ill repute as it is.

If the reports are true that there was real animosity between him and his boss, that might be enough to tip over a scale without it being gross. Working with a bad boss can make life miserable to go to work each day. It might not be true or it might be overblown, in which case never mind.

I think I'm at a point in my sports fan life where I'm not as emotionally tied to the coach than I used to be. Having Self leave just sucked at the time he did it. I think if I was the same age now as I was when it happened my emotional gut punch range would be softer. As long as the AD is savvy, I trust they'll work out a replacement that will be to the fans' satisfaction.
 
M tipping over
Pdx
There is more to morality and character than what is enforceable in court. I'd like to launch into an off-topic diatribe there, but I won't.

College sports is a dirty business, but even within that, there are norms. Norms help to keep the whole thing governable. Not leaving a job after one year is one of those norms (not firing a coach after one year is another, incidentally). That doesn't mean it doesn't happen, that doesn't mean Underwood or any other coach who's done it is a bad person, it's just something that's a little gross and tends to bring ill repute on college basketball generally, a sport that generates plenty enough ill repute as it is.
I don't disagree that leaving after one year is at least "odd," but just to play devil's advocate, do you think that he should have stayed at SFA for one more year, to try and get a better deal first, or take the opportunity at hand and leave when the right gig came along? There is a large part of me that says that the lowball offer from OSU was already a sign of a lack of commitment from them, but only one year does kind of have a bit of a reek to it, but only because there are college kids making decisions based on you. You take that out, imho it's fair game to treat that contract for what it was worth.
 
The Windy City
I believe Underwood was a done deal long ago. Or at least heavy back channel communications started way before Oklahoma State's season ended.

As sharp as Whitman is, I have a hard time believing he closed a deal in one day.

Whether or not Underwood was his #1 guy all along, who knows. But the Indiana job opening up likely accelerated things and Whitman didn't want to be left missing out on one of his top guys.

Like Brian Hamilton said in his Spots Illustrated piece. This is how big boy athletic departments operate. They identify who they want and get it done. Sometimes it's cutthroat, as we experienced with Bill Self.

And Whitman was smart enough to know that if he leaked stuff through different channels about Monty, Drew, Miller, etc...he could keep the media dogs on the chase.

Wischnowsky reported that his source told him Underwood interested in the Illinois job back on February 15th. And a few days before Whitman made the hire, Wischnowsky reported that he heard Whitman might have something up his sleeve.

So maybe Whitman was playing everyone all along. :)
 
Durant isn't from Oklahoma. He just had a job there.
Kinda like Underwood. I feel sorry for no institution. No one felt sorry for us when Self went to KU and rightfully so. KU is probably one of 6 college programs I see a coach leaving us for and just be like "damn she is cuter than me." Everything else could be at best be deemed a lateral and contingent upon some other extrinsic factor.

I think us and OK St seemed to parallel in numerous respects even in terms of non-revenue sports (golf, gymnastics, wrestling, etc.), however we are a bigger basketball school that has peaks and valleys with respect to football enthusiasm and they are a bigger football-centric school with peaks and valleys with respect to basketball enthusiasm.

We also hold a market advantage in terms of recruiting in Chicago and STL, being the flagship state school, and just being in B1G where the monetary outputs to the schools are greater than the Big 12. Not being arrogant but Illinois is a more attractive position in the hoops world.
 
Mississippi
I've watched some OK St games on YouTube and very much enjoy watching their offense. Tons of cutting and dribble handoffs. Not much standing around. I don't necessarily see a natural fit with a posting big man like Tilmon, but I haven't seen much of his game. I'm sure Underwood would have a carve out a clear role for him.
 
Lots of sour grapes and pulling at strings on their part... http://newsok.com/article/5542726
At least this guy admits that Illinois has tradition and is a good job. Some of his from the two places are similar which makes sense since OK st is a good job. While they are similar it seems that his quotes this year go a little farther. This year he has used the word elite and talked about winning a national championship. Also he has called this a destination job which as far as I can tell he didn't say that about OSU.