Tuesday Morning Coaching Comments

The following are some very quick coaching comments, some in replies to comments/questions made over the last few days:

* Almost everyone we know has grown weary through this search. Over the weekend, it is almost like someone finally flipped the switch on people’s interest that had experienced some intermittent flickering over the last month. The level of indifference and apathy amongst Wolfpackers is very, very high. What was an opportunity to reinvigorate the program has become a drag on emotion.

* The News & Observer (and some others) are now talking about Sidney Lowe. Lowe is an interesting candidate on many fronts — one particular front is that his current situation as an assistant coach with the Detroit Pistons (still playing in the NBA Playoffs) creates a situation where NC State gets to save face with the national media for the delay in our search.

* Lowe’s situation with the Pistons is almost identical to the football hire of Chuck Amato. During our last football search, State talked significantly with Bill Cowher and Jim Donnan while Amato’s Florida State Seminoles prepared for the Sugar Bowl vs Virginia Tech. State ultimately missed on the bigger names and hired Amato after the National Championship game as a fallback that could be sold to the media as “our reason on waiting to make a hire’.

* We’ll just throw this out as something that maybe we come back to in the future. We’ve know some names that were being discussed in Raleigh last week that are not prudent to share with the public at this juncture. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to put together — but a particular big name would be much easier to sell to NC State fans (and recruits) if Sidney Lowe was riding shotgun as the #1 assistant on the bench. Such a role would help Lowe evolve into a better head coach in the future and provide him valuable time of getting acclimated to college basketball. Lowe’s presence would also help mitigate “short term” risk that may exist with any potential candidates. It is just something that needs to be considered by the powers that be. We would consider such a team a home run.

* For those still hoping of a potential candidacy for Dereck Whittenburg, John DeLong discussed why Whittenburg is not a candidate in The Winston-Salem Journal this weekend. DeLong’s piece will get Wolfpackers that truly bleed red some kind of fired up for many reasons.

Whittenburg has a better chance of throwing up an airball from 40 feet and watching Lorenzo Charles slam it into Fowler’s face than he has of landing the job.

As of yesterday afternoon, Whittenburg had yet to get so much as a courtesy telephone call from Fowler, even though State is four weeks into its search and down to at least its fifth option. Rick Barnes, John Calipari, Steve Lavin and John Beilein have already turned down the job.

Think about that. Not so much as a courtesy call. To put that into its proper perspective, consider this: Fowler found the time to talk to Phil Ford earlier this week. And Fowler has had the time to talk to others who probably couldn’t tell you that there’s a brickyard on the NCSU campus, or that there’s a Bell Tower at the entrance, or that Two Guys makes the best pizza to be found on Hillsborough Street.

* The veto on Dereck Whittenburg’s candidacy seems to come from the top. Not Lee Fowler, but Chancellor Obligner. But, everyone around campus is very hush-hush on the topic. Why? If you’ve got the balls to make a decision, then why don’t the people at NC State have the balls to stand behind their position. If the decision is the right thing, then why try to hide from it? If the decision is the right, then why not educated the uneducated masses about why the decision is what is best for the NC State?

* We aren’t pushing hard for Dereck Whittenburg, despite the fact that we believe Dereck is a very legitimate fallback opportunity. But, we are heartbroken by the treatment that Dereck has received from Lee Fowler, Chancellor Oblinger, and NC State. Not even a courtesy call? Not even the respect that a fellow human deserves to be told what is going on? What if Dereck Whittenburg becomes recognized as of the greatest coaches in college basketball over the next five years? What if Dereck can work on fixing what NC State feels are his shortcomings in the next few years? You better be real careful in how you treat other people all of the time. Treat this man with some respect!

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