Winn: NCS an Offseason Basketball Loser

Sports Illustrated‘s Luke Winn has chosen to jump on the Greg Dickhead wagon as it relates to NC State Basketball.

This week, Winn listed the Top 5 winners and the Top 5 losers of the basketball offseason in this piece at CNNSI. He chose to list NC State as the 4th biggest loser of the offseason.

4. N.C. State
The neighbors have plenty to look forward to: Duke kept Josh McRoberts and landed Thomas. North Carolina is bringing in the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation. And the Wolfpack? They’re hurting. They watched as a perfectly good coach, Herb Sendek, vacated an uncomfortable situation in Raleigh to take the Arizona State job. And then their exceptionally promising center, Cedric Simmons, hired an agent and is staying in the NBA draft. Class of ’06 recruit Larry Harris, a New York City shooting guard, bailed for Seton Hall, while coveted New Jersey forward Dan Werner switched his commitment from the ‘Pack to national champ Florida. And after an uncomfortably long search, the coach N.C. State did hire, Detroit Pistons assistant Sidney Lowe, was far from the school’s first choice.

Wow. What original thinking to jump on the old “NC State sucks” bandwagon, Luke.

If NC State is a big loser for hiring a new coach that has energized the fanbase and for losing our best player (Cedric Simmons) while losing two recruits (ranked between #75 and #125), then I’d hate to know what size loser that Texas is after losing every single starter from last year’s team?

Or what kind of a loser that Florida State must be? The Semioles – like NC State – prematurely lost their best player (Alexander Johnson) while also losing a much more impactful and highly ranked recruit than NC State?

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21 Responses to Winn: NCS an Offseason Basketball Loser

  1. Pack92 06/20/2006 at 9:50 PM #

    Hey, he’s a media idiot for crying out loud. The yellow backed loser may not have gone to UNX but still sounds like it. Did anyone in the media EVER mention the knives in Matt Doherty when ‘Ol Roy came in? Every time I mention that to a tarhole wannabe they just look at me like I’m crazy.

    Tarhole wannabe defined as the joy of the UNX marketing majors eye. They are the very reason Wal-Mart ALWAYS has plenty of pansy blue crap on the discount rack.

  2. class of 74 06/21/2006 at 6:42 AM #

    Usually the further the media resides from the story the further their stories reside from the truth. This is a prime example of that theory.

  3. Rochester 06/21/2006 at 7:55 AM #

    Not to be picky, but someone might point out to him that we actually kept Larry HARRIS. It’s Larry DAVIS we lost. But that might be too many facts for this guy to keep straight.

    In fairness, we have lost a bit this offseason. But the gain of Coach Lowe should make up for it and much more in time. I think it’s funny (okay, really tiring) to hear people bring up Sendek as one of the big losses, considering Lowe is a much bigger gain to the program. I liked Herb, but to anyone who was paying attention, it was time for a change. The famous national writers like Luke Winn (note: this is sarcasm, never heard of the guy before this) didn’t have time to pay attention to our program until the coaching search dragged on for so long. But only time will prove these naysayers wrong. I guess they expect Herb to be winning some hardware out in Tempe or something. Good luck with that.

  4. choppack1 06/21/2006 at 8:09 AM #

    I can understand why an outsider would think this way. Let’s look at it from his perspective:
    1. NC State has gone to 5 straight tourneys – something they should be happy with, but aren’t – coach leaves due to expectations and pressure.
    2. Thanks to the way too public nature of the search, the NC State job is turned down by Barnes, Calipari, Montgomery, Lavin, and Beilein.
    3. Seemingly 3 months after the departure of the coach, NC State names a coach w/ no college b’ball coaching experience whatsoever.
    4. Ced Simmons declares for the draft.
    5. 2 out of the 3 recruits NC Stated signed to LOIs chose to go to other schools.

    I can certainly see how an outsider would think we were one of the big losers in the off-season. The perception outside of the general area is that a) State fans were crazy for wanting better results than what they were getting from Sendek b) State fans ran him out of town c) No decent college would ever want to coach at NC State d) Every decent college coach turned it down.

    If Lowe doesn’t get us to an NCAA (and if in the ultimate nightmare Sendek leads ASU to the tourney) next year expect the catcalls and criticism to continue.

    So what – we’ve got our guy – AND we’re united and excited about basketball again AND that’s what is most important.

  5. graywolf 06/21/2006 at 8:40 AM #

    ^ Choppack has it right.

  6. yannes 06/21/2006 at 8:54 AM #

    Four of his five “losers” went through high profile coaching changes and all of them lost key players.
    Wow Winn, way to kick ’em when they are down.

  7. Wulfpack 06/21/2006 at 9:04 AM #

    “1. NC State has gone to 5 straight tourneys – something they should be happy with, but aren’t – coach leaves due to expectations and pressure.”

    Proof that a large contingent of the Wolfpack fan base will accept nothing short of championships. I’m not so certain if this is a good thing or bad thing. See the next statement.

    “2. Thanks to the way too public nature of the search, the NC State job is turned down by Barnes, Calipari, Montgomery, Lavin, and Beilein.”

    Yes, that’s 5 rejections. That’s saying something — either about the AD, the program, or the fan base. In all liklihood it indicates something about all three.

    “3. Seemingly 3 months after the departure of the coach, NC State names a coach w/ no college b’ball coaching experience whatsoever.”

    Add to that the fact absolutely no other programs were pursuing him and when he was hired, he couldn’t assume control of the program due to the circumstances. Sid must learn on the job or the ship will sink fast. He’ll get it done, but not anytime soon. Our competitors are light years ahead of us at this stage in the game.

    “4. Ced Simmons declares for the draft.”

    Big loss. But great for Ced. Ced sensed that the transition was going to be ugly this first year and could affect his draft stock.

    “5. 2 out of the 3 recruits NC Stated signed to LOIs chose to go to other schools.”

    Hopefully we can keep the third. But this is the inevitable nature of a coaching change. It shouldn’t reflect poorly on Sid, he surely wasn’t given much of a chance to keep these guys.

    The article doesn’t point out our recent signings or the perceived euphoric state of the fan base. While I don’t think NCSU is a big “loser” in all of this, we certainly won’t be big “winners” either anytime soon. Sid is a classy man with a wealth of knowledge and passion for the game. He also has a seasoned staff that will greatly aid in the learning process. He will have to adjust to the college game accordingly, but will do so in time. So I agree that the program may be a “loser” in terms of wins and losses as compared to the previous season(s), but that is something we as fans are willing to comprimise assuming we will be positioned to gain something at least in the end — hopefully an ACC and National Championship. As great as the learning curve will be, he cannot allow State to fall off the map these first few years b/c it could be very difficult to recover considering the landscape. Simply put, A-list recruits will not flock to Raleigh if losing seasons are the norm. Sid must hit the ground running. A hiccup or two along the way is to be expected, but nothing more.

  8. vtpackfan 06/21/2006 at 9:09 AM #

    I wonder if the blush and lip gloss he uses works in throwing his parents off the trail until he finish’s high school. A real brain burner, Oklahoma as #1, and Indiana #5 in the big loser category. He gave Texas honorable mention as a bust even though he couldn’t make a list of five teams (big east the big loser #2). Also thought it interesting that Pitt was on the big winners list partly to do with who coming back, but most notably whose not, Karl Krauser. Evidentily his playmaking skills that he brought to the most boring team to watch since the creation of the shot clock was truly detremental. Absent was any mention of ASU. Apparently the Pac 10 is too deep a conference for Herb to get any prosperity to Tempe. Watch out for the Beavers in ’06.

  9. choppack1 06/21/2006 at 9:42 AM #

    “Ced sensed that the transition was going to be ugly this first year and could affect his draft stock. ”

    Do you know that for a fact? I think w/ Ced coming back, the transition would have been much smoother. The team would have as much returning as anyone in the conference.

    I like to think Ced decided to stay in because he realized his value was higher than he had previously thought.

  10. redfred2 06/21/2006 at 9:46 AM #

    Luke Winn? Just look at that face. Another of the “too young” crowd who haven’t been around long enough to process the past and can’t fathom anything but the status quo of their short years.

    Razor, shaving cream, he find out about those things soon enough.

  11. StateFans 06/21/2006 at 10:24 AM #

    Ced sensed that the transition was going to be ugly this first year and could affect his draft stock.

    No offense…but that”s absolutely absurd. it strikes us as the kind of comment that you find on idiot boards on the internet — just make something up as if it is fact and say it. (Been following the boards some recently and it is absolutely sad what some people come up with.)

    Contrary to this comment is the FACT that some members of our actual basketball program placed the likelihod that Cedric was leaving BEFORE HERB left at 90%…and then dropped that number to only 50% once Sidney was hired.

  12. Wulfpack 06/21/2006 at 10:56 AM #

    ^ My apologies. Wasn’t aware that his decision was made prior to Lowe’s hiring was a “fact”. I wish Ced the best and hope he can have a wonderful career in the league.

  13. Gene 06/21/2006 at 11:28 AM #

    Why are we getting crap for Ced Simmons declaring early for the draft? WTF is wrong with a kid declaring early, when he’s working his way into being a lotter pick?

    People will hate us when good thing happen. Ced Simmons going in the lottery (or first round) is a good thing for our program. Shows very talented kids, a couple of years at NCSU, will get them ready for the millions, which await in the NCAA’s.

  14. tcthdi-tgsf-twhwtnc 06/21/2006 at 12:07 PM #

    There was a zero percent chance of Ced staying if Sendek stayed. That didn’t change with the hiring of Lowe. The media in general makes a habit of bashing NC State athletics. They’ve been doing it since my earliest memories and I suspect it will continue when I’m dead.

    I’m suprised the NC State lunatic fans were never accused of bring down Bo Rein’s plane for leaving the program for LSU.

  15. JT 06/21/2006 at 12:22 PM #

    It’s just another example of how national sports/ news media members are not able or willing to delve into issues with any particular depth. This isn’t specific at all to the Winn- it seems to be true throughout the media with few exceptions, whether the topic is sports or anything else. I’ve come to believe that 90% of news coverage is essentially worthless. Most news stories are nothing more than filler of no informative value. If Jim Lehrer comes out and says State was an offseason loser, maybe then I’d listen.

  16. redfred2 06/21/2006 at 12:26 PM #

    If Simmons had been experiencing growth on the college level he would have probably been advised by everyone to go early. The fact that the coach fortunate enough to have him for two years on the colligiate level, didn’t bother to help him develop his skills while playing for NC State University, gave the guy no reason to believe it would be any different with a new staff, and no reason to stick around.

  17. Wolf4Life 06/21/2006 at 4:06 PM #

    Why worry about what the media says. Almost every one of the talking heads had the Hurricanes picked last or second to last in their division this past year.
    In all fairness, we did have a rough offseason with respect to the recruits we lost and simmons going pro. He didn’t even menton the real loss of Chris Wright backing out of his verbal along with Davis and Werner. I just don’t understand why we spend so much time complaining about what some sportswriter writes who can’t even get his facts straight (Larry Harris) Focus on the future!
    FWIW – Davis and all of the baggage of his family is a BIG GAIN in my opinion

  18. redfred2 06/21/2006 at 5:30 PM #

    “I just don’t understand why we spend so much time complaining about what some sportswriter writes”

    100% agreed. NCSU is an easy target and it’s easy to jump on the bandwagon RIGHT NOW, but that will be achanging soon. They’ll all be together writing about the big turn around not too far down the road and they’ll be back on the band wagon with all of their buddies once again. ALL ABOARD!

  19. Wulfpack 06/22/2006 at 1:44 PM #

    From today’s Charlotte Observer:

    “Williams said N.C. State fans will be happy with Sidney Lowe as their new coach, but was disappointed that former coach Herb Sendek left for Arizona State after enduring considerable dissatisfaction from fans. “They had a great guy and a great coach,” Williams said. “And it’s a shame it didn’t work out.”

  20. redfred2 06/22/2006 at 4:01 PM #


    I also read one where Sendek’s wife said he was one helluva badminton player and a good little helper around the house.

    Can you please dig up some more of these water under the bridge type comments about Herb Sendek? Especially ones coming out of Chapel Hill, and Roy Williams no less, those are always greatly appreciated here at STATE FANS NATION.

    No doubt, Roy Williams will miss him sorely. Kinda like when Roy was a kid and he kicked neighbor’s docile dog every time it showed up. That’s the kind admiration Roy Williams had for Herb Sendek next door at NCSU. The docile little dog has been replaced with one that just might bite him on his ass if given half a chance.

    These never ending he said, she said, news paper articles are really making me start to doubt what I witnessed with my own eyes and ears for the past decade. Please stop.

  21. MrPlywood 06/24/2006 at 4:21 PM #

    I’m pretty sure sure it’s been mentioned before, but I think that the “rejections” by the various coaches were greatly influenced by the level of competition that these guys would face in their own backyard, nevermind the rest of the ACC. Having Roy and Mike right down the road is surely intimidating. You KNOW that was burning through Calipari’s feeble, greedy mind. And , oh yeah, he would have to follow some rules. Lavin? Get real. Why in the world a broadcaster would be considered a better hire than an active NBA coach is beyond me. Beilein — thank goodness that didn’t happen. zzzzzzzzz.

    I always thought that the right guy would be someone that had “been there before” with State. And now we’ve got 2 guys that are partly responsbile for the rabid fan base that KNOWS State can achieve Big 4, conference and national prominence: Sidney and Monte.

    And RedFred has it right, the mealymouthed comments about Herb from the likes of Williams and K should be completely discounted – the LAST thing they wanted is for State hire a coach that has no fear of either UNX or DOOK.

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