On Sunday, July 3rd I changed the pace a little and shared an interesting article from the Houston Chronicle that focused on the University of Houston’s athletic program and the new opportunity provided it through recent conference re-alignments.
When I read the article, I found it chocked full of interesting quotes that I thought I would consolidate in a single entry. It is always beneficial to remove yourself from the micro-level of whatever team & program that you follow and re-set some of your perspective on some issues.
===> “Say this for UH: it still aspires to be something special…. the first thing UH athletic director Dave Maggard had to change was the attitude about such things. He had to convince staff and alumni that great things were possible. He might have done that.”
===> “In the end, it’s Maggard’s hiring of Tom Penders as basketball coach that will be UH’s fast track to a bigger stage. Penders knows how to recruit. He has a style of play that’s easy to sell and a track record of success. Penders went 18-14 in his first season. He moved the Cougars in the right direction. Now he has “the best recruiting class I’ve ever had” for his second season. He knows what’s at stake.”
===> “Football programs are different. They take longer. There’s more uncertainty. Football teams are built on a series of recruiting classes. They’re built in weight rooms and with innovative game plans.”
===> “Tradition counts for something, too. UH has been places schools such as Central Florida and East Carolina would love to go. Those schools weren’t part of the greatest college basketball game ever played. Those schools didn’t win four Southwest Conference championships.”
===> “Maggard took over a program that was raising about $735,000 a year. He has gotten that number up to around $2 million. But that’s only half enough to fund the scholarships. He can knock on doors and twist arms and all of that. But the Cougars have to win enough to get their fans excited about buying tickets and wanting to be involved.”