On a gloomy, rainy Sunday afternoon in Bloomington, there’s no news yet on whether Tony Bennett is interested in Indiana’s coaching job.
AfterÂ all the buzz yesterday,Â it wasn’t clear what we’d hear today. If Bennett isn’t interested in the IU coaching job, he isn’tÂ likely to announce that. Even if he does want the job, that doesn’t mean we’ll hear anything right away as negotiations take place.
But I didn’t expect it to be so quiet today as Indiana fans wait to hear further word about Bennett or other possible candidates. I have calls out toÂ people I know who areÂ connected to Bennett that I would normally expect to call me back, but haven’t heard from them. That must mean something.
We’re working to find out what’s happening today, but haven’t heardÂ anything significantÂ yet.
I was surprised last night to read that other media are reporting that Mike Montgomery and Lon Kruger are two potential candidates for the IU job if Bennett is not interested or if the reports of IU’s interest in Bennett turn out to be wrong.
My thought is that one of the biggest problems the IU athletic department faces is a lack of stability. Within the past decade, IU has had four athletic directors (and now Greenspan’s in hot water with many fans), four head footballÂ coaches andÂ soon will have its fourth head basketball coach. I can’t think of any otherÂ major college athleticÂ program with that much turnover in itsÂ most importantÂ positions.
Given that recent history, I’d question the wisdom of hiringÂ a 61-year-old coach in Montgomery (who’s been mentioned for this job for a while now)Â or the 55-year-old Kruger, who has had six different college head coaching jobs and has stayed longer than four years only once, and that was a six-year stint at Florida.
I’ve covered enough coaching searches for a while.Â Â Â
I agree with those who say IUÂ would be better offÂ hiringÂ a top young coach like Wright State’s 39-year-old Brad Brownell – even if he is unproven at IU’s level -Â and give himÂ time to build a program. BrownellÂ isn’t a big name nationally, but is a Hoosier native who seems capable and a good fit from everything I’ve heard and read about him.
I haveÂ heard from readers who think IU needs to make a big splashÂ with itsÂ hire. I don’tÂ see that.Â To me, the university needs to hireÂ aÂ coach who will do things right, put Indiana back as a perennial contender for Big Ten titles and stick around for a while.Â Â Â
Obviously, not everybody agrees with that. What do you think today about the reported potential candidates?Â Might Greenspan and Co. still pull a Sampson out of left field like last time? WillÂ the gloom disappearÂ in the upcoming hours and days?