My take on the program, what to do, and who to hire...
So Greenberg is done...there's no bringing him back, so it is what it is...moving forward, the new coach is going to need to make a splash, particularly with donors and recruits
The timing of the fire is really problematic for the program, as VT has now lost headway with their '13 and '14 recruits...I am of the opinion that a splash hire could save the '14 recruits, but '13 is going to leave much to be desired
The first priority of the new coach should be winning the locker room. He absolutely needs to keep those players in the fold, even if only for numbers and depth reasons...
VT has 2 scholarships left for 2013...it is going to be extremely difficult to fill those scholarships with ACC quality players if VT misses out on the April evaulation period...the final 2 spots will need to come from transfers if that is the case, as taking on two projects early in your tenure at an ACC school can be disasterous
I would suspect that the average base salary for the new coach will be somewhere around $1 Million to $1.3 Million, and if they're smart they'll back load the contract to save some money in the short term...I wouldn't be surprised to see the new coach making ~900k in his first year
Another way to attract better names without breaking the bank is to load the contract with incentives...20+ win seasons, NCAA tournament berths, top 3 finish in ACC, etc...this way you're only paying when you get a good product on the floor and a good product on the floor will lead to NCAA tournament money, which will help pay the incentives
What you as fans have to realize is that VT will likely be buying out 2 contracts after this is over, on top of paying a new head coach, and hiring 5 staff members (3 assistants, 1 DOBO, Video Coordinator) at a competitive rate, likely higher than the last staff...so you need to realize that any head coach VT gets will have some flaws...the dream of getting a coach who has won 20+ games every year and been to multiple NCAA tournaments and is a great recruiter is just not going to happen...the money isn't there to make that move, and the job itself isn't a lure enough to land those types
If I were Weaver, I would throw away my pride during the search for this new coach (not that the press conference didn't do that for him)...he's gonna be turned down by some solid coaches...his decision not to hire a search committee puzzles me, maybe it's a money saving issue to give more money to the new coach, but I don't think Weaver is exactly at one with the college basketball world, so I think he'll be missing out on some good candidates, that he might not be aware of
I would hit the big names first, knowing full well that it isn't likely to materialize...I would do so because on the outside chance you get a nibble, it could be a home run for the university
I would place calls to:
Shaka Smart - HC, VCU
Greg Marshall - HC, Wichita State
Tommy Amaker - HC, Harvard
Chris Collins - Asst. Duke
those would all be home runs...the answer is likely no, but worth a shot
the next group is a bunch who would be solid hires who could potentially make a splash...
Chris Mooney - HC, Richmond
Mooney would be a great hire X's and O's-wise...he teaches a methodical offense and gets his players to play hard...he would probably need a good stable of assistants to help with recruiting
Steve Prohm - HC, Murray State
A little bit of an unknown, Prohm could turn out to be a huge steal or a huge bust...it's tough when hiring a coach based off one season alone, but is it worse than hiring an assistant who has zero seasons under his belt?
Donnie Jones - HC, UCF
Jones is an exceptional recruiter, an upbeat high-energy guy. The danger here is he got into some hot water with the NCAA this past summer, when a booster had been pushing prospects toward UCF.
Larry Shyatt - HC, Wyoming
He's been a coach at Clemson in the ACC, and it wasn't a big splash, but he's been a longtime assistant under Billy Donovan at Florida, and can recruit. He is now at Wyoming and guided them to 20 wins last season. I'd be a big fan of this hire. He could bring some quality assistants with him as well.
Mike Rhodes - Asst. VCU
The next best thing to hiring Shaka himself. Good recruiter, great knowledge of the game, and very well respected in the coaching community. I know for a fact (unlike vcuinsider) that Coach Rhodes has been in contact with VT about the job and would be interested. He is an unknown, but could potentially make a splash.
After that group, you have a third tier of candidates who could be boom or bust
Tom Herrion, Marshall
Blaine Taylor, ODU
Dell Curry, none
This is only an initial search, and I'm probably overlooking a candidate or two, but any of those first 9 should be met with some enthusiasm, but also with the expectation that the situation the new coach is put in means he may not be successful for at least 2 or 3 years, especially if any of the current players/signees leave the school
What will be enticing to the new coach will be the authority to bring in a whole new staff of his own, they'll be "his guys"...but some names to consider when adding a new staff would be
Todd Lickliter - Asst. Miami (OH)...he was the head coach at Butler and Iowa before becoming an assistant under Charlie Coles, who just retired. He was passed up for the head coaching job there and may be looking for a fresh start somewhere bigger. He would also lend a hand in trying to land Brian Sullivan, a Miami (OH) freshman who is transferring out. Sullivan is one of the nation's best 3-pt shooters. UVa wants him badly.
Dell Curry - I don't like him as a head coach, but it would be worth a shot as an assistant. He could bring a lot to the table with regards to recruiting, just flash his NBA credentials and mention his offspring.
Greg Paulus - DOBO, Ohio State...I know, I know...teabag, etc etc...he would be a solid hire as a third chair assistant though, and brings some name recognition
Rick McFadden - Asst. Akron...hard worker, very knowledgeable...he was a finalist for the DOBO position back when Adrian Autry was hired, so he may be interested
some good possibilities out there, but the candidate who gets the job will inevitably have some flaws...prepare yourself for it, don't jump overboard...it could be a bumpy road ahead for VT basketball, but with better funding and a good staff, it could get better in time
TechSideline.com (a.k.a. TSL) is an independent publication that is in no way affiliated with or sponsored by Virginia Tech or the Virginia Tech Athletic Department. This site is best viewed using Mozilla Firefox or MS Internet Explorer at a video resolution of 1024x768 or higher. For more details, including a list of TechSideline staff, see our Contact Page. All original material and images are copyrighted by TechSideline.com and may not be reused or reprinted without permission.