Brian: The Eagles' coaching search will quiet down over the weekend so we can all enjoy the long, holiday weekend and the Final Four. Let's take a moment to take stock of where BC is with their coaching search. So far, we have (more or less) objectively previewed five head coaching candidates for the vacant Boston College men's basketball head coach position. Four of those candidates have either interviewed or will interview early next week (Coen's interview is scheduled for Monday and Amaker is also rumored to be under consideration).
So far, we've profiled:
So let's now inject some subjectivity into this coaching search. What’s your gut tell you? Who do you think would be the best head coach of the above 5 candidates?
Jeff: Chris Mooney is the best candidate we have profiled so far. Donohue is a close second but these two coaches will land big time jobs in the next year if that is what they desire. If Coen doesn't get the job he will probably end up at Siena and Cooley will probably stay at Faifield for a little while. Tommy Amaker failed at Michigan and I really don't want Boston College to be his first job back at a major conference program.
Brian: I agree with you. At this point, I like either Mooney or Donahue. Mooney successfully sold a basketball program at Air Force - certainly not an easy task - and Donahue turned around the Cornell program and created buzz for a program that lives in the shadows of the Big Red men's hockey team. If I had to pick one at this point, I'd lean ever so slightly towards Donahue, believe it or not. While the A-10 is a much better conference than the Ivy League for basketball, in my eyes, Donahue has accomplished more by winning the Ivy League in three consecutive seasons than Mooney. But I'd be happy with either candidate. And apparently, so would our readers, with Mooney receiving a 61% approval rating at this time, slightly edging out Donahue and his 60% rating.
This is not to discount the candidacy of either Ed Cooley or Bill Coen. I believe either would be an asset to the BC basketball program going forward. However, when you fire a very successful basketball coach that has been at the school for 13 years over "philosophical differences," this tells me that DeFilippo truly wants to take the program in a different direction. As much as I don't question Coen or Cooley's enthusiasm for the position, I don't think you can justify firing a successful head coach of 13 years and replace him with one of his long-time assistants.
Jeff: In other basketball-related news, I'd like to take this time to acknowledge that Brian gave me a beating in our NCAA Tournament brackets this season. It wasn't the cleanest year for picking tournament games but somehow Brian managed to get a bunch of the right.
Brian: Northeastern coach Bill Coen will interview with BC on Monday. Coen is also considered a candidate for the vacant Siena job. Where will Coen be coaching next year? BC, Siena or Northeastern?
Jeff: Siena, which is good for him to move on from Northeastern.
Jeff: Minnesota’s Mr. Basketball and 2010 recruit Kevin Noreen is watching the coaching search closely before he will comment on his future. Is Noreen BC’s greatest flight risk?
Brian: Well, Heslip is already enrolled. So between Noreen and Ndao, you have to think Noreen is the greater flight risk.
Brian: BC’s Josh Southern was shocked at the firing of Al Skinner. Do you think Skinner’s dismissal will affect the team’s performance next season, especially the senior class?
Jeff: Absolutely it will affect him, but hopefully for the better. Fortunately, they set a low bar for themselves and only need to finish better than .500 to improve.
Jeff: By this time next week, will Southern and the rest of the team know who their new coach is?
Brian: Yes. Well, I certainly hope so. Hopefully this is wrapped up next week so we can enjoy the Frozen Four.
Brian: The NCAA has concluded that the best way to expand the tournament is with 96 teams. Your thoughts?
Jeff: Sounds good to me. After the first round, we get our 64-team tournament again.
Jeff: BC football is the only team in the ACC with no recruiting commitments for 2011. Why is the football team following in the hoops team's footsteps?
Brian: Still plenty of time left for football. The basketball recruiting scene is much more pressing (7 open scholarships?!).
Brian: Last one, the Final Four kicks off this weekend. Who ya got? Who will be playing for the title on Monday night?
Jeff: Duke-Butler Monday night in the final.
Final Four picks? Leave your thoughts below and have a great holiday weekend.