Sendek survives while State falls (further) behind

A sports writer named John Brasier from Anderson, SC’s Independent-Mail wrote an article today that is as priceless as they come. I will have more personal comment related to this article later…but, I could not take the gamble of hesitating another minute in the event that you had not yet seen it.

Sendek survives while State falls behind
By John Brasier
January 28, 2005

Herb Sendek will be back for the ninth straight year today when N.C. State plays Clemson at Littlejohn Coliseum. That�s right, ninth. It�s a dirty little secret that other ACC schools don�t want to get out.

How does Sendek keep his job as coach of the Wolfpack? He should be a contestant on “Survivor.��

While N.C. State�s Big Four rivals Duke, North Carolina and Wake Forest have flourished at the top of the nation�s best basketball conference and competed for national championships, the Wolfpack has floundered in mediocrity with the same coach in charge. Doesn�t anyone in Wolfpack Nation care?

In his eight-plus seasons, Sendek is 57-77 in ACC games. From 1954 through 1990, State was 282-214 in the ACC under Everett Case, Norm Sloan and Jim Valvano. Case was the father of ACC basketball. Sloan and Valvano won national titles.

Perhaps now that Philip Rivers is gone and State is struggling again in football, Sendek�s lack of success will come under greater scrutiny.

Granted, the Wolfpack went 21-10 and finished second in the ACC in season No. 8 under Sendek. But was that second-round NCAA loss worth the long wait?

This year, Sendek�s team is back to its old tricks. Despite returning All-American Julius Hodge, the Wolfpack has stumbled to a 12-7 start, including a 2-4 record in the ACC.

State�s setbacks have included a home loss to West Virginia and an embarrassing blowout loss to St. John�s. The Wolfpack has also lost to ACC newcomers Miami and Virginia Tech.

In their last game, the Wolfpack lost at home to Florida State.

Granted, Sendek took over a program that took a nosedive in six seasons under popular coach Les Robinson. That may be why N.C. State resisted pulling the plug after Sendek failed to do better than 6-10 in league play in his first five seasons.

Sendek earned rave reviews at the end of his first season when the Wolfpack won three games to reach the finals in the ACC Tournament. In 2002, the Wolfpack advanced to another ACC title game.

But Sendek hasn�t done nearly enough to justify his tenure. There�s no reason N.C. State shouldn�t be an annual contender in the ACC and stay for more than a weekend when it makes the NCAA Tournament.

The state-of-the-art RBC Center in Raleigh is one of the nicest home courts in the nation. And Valvano won in decrepit Reynolds Coliseum.

State�s location in the biggest city in the basketball-crazy Research Triangle and its rich tradition and strong fan base should be attractive to top recruits.

Since Sendek took over at State, Duke and Maryland have won NCAA titles. Georgia Tech has played in the title game. North Carolina has gone to the Final Four. Wake has been an annual tournament team.

Meanwhile, State has played a total of five NCAA games, winning only two of them.

State�s fall from power did not start under Sendek, but it�s continued under his reign.

How much more mediocrity is State willing to endure under Sendek? Expect me to ask again next year.

General Media NCS Basketball

One Response to Sendek survives while State falls (further) behind

  1. JERRY STOTESBURY 03/10/2006 at 5:08 PM #

    well,it’s next year and I just finished watching the wake (acc tourn.) game. If that doesn’t do it (get rid of herb),we might as well all become carolina fans!

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