|These are fun, unless you are a head coach|
The coaching carousel is in full swing in the world of sports. With firings and hiring’s occurring throughout the sports land scape it got me thinking…. What are my top five favorite times that coaches have dismissed (while I’ve been alive)? Go on after the jump to find out.
On this date the University of Washington publicly announced that they would be not be renewing the contract of Woman’s Basketball head coach June Daugherty and her staff. She had led the Huskies for 11 seasons, with a 191-139 mark. During those 11 seasons the Huskies appeared in six NCAA tournament appearances, three WNIT appearances and won one Pac-10 title. Before her firing she had hauled in one of the best recruiting classes in the nation (including Jackson High School standout Kristi Kingma). The decision to not renew her contract came after she lead the Huskies to their sixth appearance in the NCAA tournament.’
Where the Program is at now: After Daugherty was fired the UW hired Coach Tia Jackson, who went 45-75 in four years at the helm of the program. Coach Jackson was fired, and Coach Kevin McGuff was hired for what looks like a rebuild.
Where the Coach is at now: Coach June Daugherty was not out of work long as she was pretty quickly hired by Jim Sterk, the Athletic Director at Washington State University, to rebuild the morbid woman’s basketball team. Despite few wins and many losses, current WSU AD Bill Moos gave her a two year contract extension.
Why is it a favorite dismissal? See the state of the UW’s program.
4) Lou Piniella gets traded
The first Mariner manager to ever get the Mariners to the playoffs (1995 is still my favorite Mariner season ever), and the only Mariner manager ever to take the team to the playoffs (1995, 1997, 2000 and 2001). Lou Piniella is one of two managers to win 116-win seasons. And he felt that management was not willing to spend the money to go out and get a big bat. And then his father became ill, his father lived in Tampa Bay. It was too much for Piniella, and he requested a trade to the Devil Rays after the 2002 season. He got it, and the Mariners got Randy Winn in return.
Where the Team is now: The Mariners have chewed threw managers faster than Tony Gwynn chews threw chew (too soon?). And the teams on field performance suffered. Add in poor drafting and free agent decisions and the Mariners ended up bottoming out with a 101 loss season in 2008.
Where the Coach is now: Retired, Piniella spent three years with Tampa before he resigned after the 2005 season, he finished his time there with a .421 winning percentage. He was quickly hired by the Cubs. “Sweet Lou” spent four seasons in Wrigleyville, accumulating a 316-293 record, before retiring due to his mother’s severe illness.
Why is it a favorite dismissal? While technically not a dismissal, Mariner management’s incompetence had a lot to do with his decision to leave. For me management driving away an employee, is the same as a dismissal, and that is why this makes the list. It shows how incompetent Mariner’s management was/is.
3) Kansas cans Mark Mangino
Mark Mangino’s 50-48 record is one of the best head coaching records at the University of Kansas. The best season that the team had under Mangino was a 12-1 season in 2007. That team went on to win the Big-12 the Orange Bowl. However, the program went into decline brought on by multiple injuries causing the young guys to step up and into the fire. The programs decline lead to discontent in the locker room. And soon disturbing accusations immerged. This accusation was Mangino physically and verbally abused his players. As the pressure mounted, more and more players (current and former) spoke out. Finally it got to the point where the Athletic Department at Kansas felt like they had to fire him, so they did.
Where the program is now: Charlie Weis was hired to be Kansas head coach for next season. Need I say more?
Where the Coach is now: Hiding, Mangino has made a few statementsthrough reporters but has mainly remained silent.
Why this is a favorite dismissal: The programs spiral and collapse has led to Charlie Weis again getting a head coaching position. I think he didn’t get a fair shake at Notre Dame; I believe (hope) he will get enough time at Kansas to show he can coach. Oh, and Kansas seems to have a thing for overweight coaches.
2) Two and out, Bob Melvin gets the boot
Bob Melvin was the man that Mariners management thought would be the perfect replacement for Sweet Lou. In his first season at the helm, the Seattle Mariners went 93-69 (tying the mark from the previous season), finishing second in the American LeagueWest. And then the wheels fell off, the aging roster combined with injuries lead to a 63-99 record. Bob Melvin was then fired.
Where the team is now: The Mariners are on their sixth coach since Melvin was fired. Again the team bottomed out in 2008 with 101 losses.
Where the manager is at now: Melvin lead the Arizona Diamondbacks for five seasons (2005-2009), compiling a 337-340 record. In his a partial (first season) in Oakland (2011) he went 47-52.
Why this is a favorite dismissal: See Lou Piniella gets traded.
1) Craig James disease strikes Texas Tech
Mike Leach is an offensive innovator. His Air Raid offense is one of the most prolific aerial assaults in the country. This aerial attack lead to 10 bowl games in 10 seasons (he had a 5-4 record, he was not allowed to coach in the 2009 Alamo Bowl), an 84-43 record and the best graduation rate in the Big-12. Despite all of this Leach found himself in the middle of contentious contract negotiations with the Tech administration regarding a renewal after the 2008 season. He eventually got the contract he wanted, it would later play a major role in his demise as the Red Raiders head coach. Enter Craig James and his son Adam (a Tech WR), aconcussion and the media room. This combination of factors lead to a smear campaign run by ESPN and one of its personalities (Craig James) that cost Mike Leach his job, and made him untouchable to many universities (and saved Tech $800K that they would have owed Leach).
Where the program is now: Staying home for the holidays. This is the first time in nearly two decades that the Red Raiders have not spent the holiday season at home. After an 8-5 season in Tuberville’s first year, the Raiders fell apart and went 5-7 this past year.
Where the Coach is now: Washington State University, Pullman, Washington (this isn’t the reason this is my favorite firing/dismissal), Leach took two years off, started some lawsuits and chilled at his house in Key West, Florida. But now the pirate is back and swinging his sword.
Why this is a favorite dismissal: It revealed how powerful ESPN is and, ultimately, how corrupt ESPN is. #rememberthe5
Proud alum of Washington State University, crazy sports nut, and drinker of beer.