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OK first of all let me say that I know this question gets asked every year, but it's been a little slow and we've now had time to let another season of college basketball soak in. If Pitino ever had to step down for whatever reason who would be the first coach you call?
Personally I've been following VCU for about three years now and I absolutely love what Shaka Smart brings to the table. I think if he ever went to a higher profile school in a higher profile league and had access to the more elite talent he would become a monster. I don't know how many times I've seen VCU just absolutely hammer solid schools from bigger conferences. I've seen them go through stretches where they looked unbeatable and we're about VCU here. Just imagine what he could do at a big name school. I would take Smart over Stevens in a heartbeat. I think he could be a hall of famer before he is done. I know it doesn't matter to most people, but I also like the way that Smart carries himself. That can speak volumes about character. Anyways I'm bored and it's all hypothetical so please don't swamp me with the Pitino isn't going anywhere speeches. Just curious if others have the same take.
Bad Brad Stevens! 100%
I have faith in Tom Jurich and I know he would make a home run hire
I think Smart would be a great hire after Pitino retires. But if Richard is successful at Minnesota, it is hard to imagine we would pass over him. Regardless, Jurich will pick a good one and we will have many takers. I like Stevens but feel Smart or Pitino jr would be better fits for our style.
I want Ricky Jr.
"Strike like lightning. Leave the thunder for those who like a loud roar!"
At this point it SS; however, I guess anything is subject to change.
Richard Pitino. Never thought I would say that but that is what is going to happen anyway.
Today, I'd take Shaka, although I love Brad Stevens as well. I just think Shaka's style of play mirrors are brand more. I'd like to see a larger body of work from Richard and even Coach Mass. He has also done well thus far at Manhattan. Whoever we go with, I hope they play an uptempo pressing style that we've become accustomed to over both Crum's and Pitino's tenures.
Some top candidates have been mentioned. I think the biggest thing to answer is who will be willing to follow a hall of fame coach who had multiple final fours and potentially multiple national championships? It's so hard to say because Smart and Stevens have turned down some pretty large job offers recently. I'm keeping my eye on Rick Jr though. I think he will be a star and could be a perfect hire if he's willing to follow his dad. But he may want to carve his own path.
Which is a good point. Even if Richard has success between now and then and is a viable candidate will he want to be in his dad's shadow of sorts?
Anyone with insight on this? Would Richard even want to coach here? I mean it's obviously one of the most prestigious jobs in the game but there are kind of mitigating factors here.
I dont look at that at all as standing in your fathers shadows. In fact, every father (worth a damn anyways) would love for their children to not only follow in their footsteps but to create there own. That has nothing to do with where Richard coaches. The coaching decision has already been made and established, where he does it has not. Pitino would want Richard to be successful, and they both know that Louisville provides that opportunity as good (if not better) then anyone.
In regards to the topic, the answer at this point in time would be Shaka Smart. Similar style, hungry, excellent recruiter. He would fit in perfectly here, however, Pitino is coaching likes hes 20 again - we have a great chance at 3 consecutive final fours and he isnt going anywhere soon, hes worked too hard with this roster to not enjoy the benefits of it.
Perphaps by the time he is ready to hang it up Richard will be a more viable option, though, I think the Minnesota job is harder then many realize.
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