Official Airing of Grievances Thread

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Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:46 am

A thread where people can criticize BA, JJ, and Vowels without forcing other threads to go off topic. My guess is this thread sets a new board record for number of pages by June.
"Anything that can be done in college basketball can be done from right here.” - Coach Davis
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby udballer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:17 am

Good idea. Let's see if it works. :)

Primary issue remains defense. We still don't play it. We played very little under Ray and we play less now.

Our next coach (coming in 2020) needs to be able to coach defense, not just preach it at the press conference and be (basically) the worst school in the country at playing it two years down the road.

Consistency on defense raises a team's floor significantly. Bad teams become average teams. Average teams become good teams. Good teams turn into special teams. All from playing consistent defense. Currently, we've been watching an above average (in talent) team perform like a bad team. That is unacceptable and entirely on the coaching staff.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 11:32 am

I agree with all of that. We've never been a hard nosed hustle kind of team, at least not since I started following in 2005. Even under Ray we were running and gunning. We probably played marginally better defense then, but we won games because of an efficient offense with great talent. (*Lowe, however, did play pretty good D.)

As noted on another thread by our friend 96, we truly are the worst D1 Jesuit MBB team (I use sagarin, not entirely sure about RPI or others). In fact, the only other D1 catholic school worse than us is Incarnate Word. They just fired their coach, BTW.

All of this tells me 2 things. 1 - Garibaldi should fire Vowels immediately. 2 - BA should call Incarnate Word and schedule a game for next season.
"Anything that can be done in college basketball can be done from right here.” - Coach Davis
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby udballer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:27 pm

Tacitus651 wrote:I agree with all of that. We've never been a hard nosed hustle kind of team, at least not since I started following in 2005. Even under Ray we were running and gunning. We probably played marginally better defense then, but we won games because of an efficient offense with great talent. (*Lowe, however, did play pretty good D.)

As noted on another thread by our friend 96, we truly are the worst D1 Jesuit MBB team (I use sagarin, not entirely sure about RPI or others). In fact, the only other D1 catholic school worse than us is Incarnate Word. They just fired their coach, BTW.

All of this tells me 2 things. 1 - Garibaldi should fire Vowels immediately. 2 - BA should call Incarnate Word and schedule a game for next season.


Agree that Lowe played good defense. In fact, we've had decent defenders on teams throughout... just no team defense. It's simply been playing man-to-man. If you're a naturally good defender, you swim... otherwise you sink.

The only break from that came in the form of the "chaos" defense. A "philosophy" that was probably dreamt up and taught over 12 minutes of a single practice. Goal seemed to be to sell out and get into every passing lane in an attempt to generate turnovers. It was, basically, a clueless staff telling their guys to play poor defense by consistently overplaying their man. It was something that could only be described as an attempt to break the status quo by any means necessary, regardless of how ill conceived the game plan... and the end result tended to be an uncontested layup. It's no surprise we didn't see or hear about the CHAOS defense this past season.

The bigger frustration is that some of the guys on the current team have experience playing defense at a high level. Josh and Gerald won a state championship in Class A that centered more on defensive ability than anything offensive. Their performance, on the defensive side of the ball, has been minimized since they arrived on campus.
Last edited by udballer on Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby udballer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:30 pm

Also agree that Vowels should go.

Also agree we need Incarnate Word on the schedule.

We talk about how top level basketball recruits would rather have "Detroit" on their jersey than "Detroit Mercy". I can't imagine a stud basketball player getting excited to put on his "Incarnate Word" jersey.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 1:50 pm

I think there is a 99% chance Vowels gets fired soon.

I'd say there's a 40% chance BA gets fired, based on this: https://www.wsj.com/articles/how-do-pun ... 1519662425
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby R.B.J1 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 2:48 pm

My main grievance with the 2017-2018 Detroit Titans was that the selfishness of two players was never addressed. JJJr. and Chatman both would initiate the offense and never give the ball up. If Chatman happened to get the rebound on the defensive end it was an 80% chance that he was going to dribble up court, do three head fakes, dribble the ball through his legs, and take a crazy three pointer, or a fade away in traffic. He plays like he's on a treadmill, he makes a lot of moves, but he isn't getting past his defender, or fooling him. JJJr. would occasionally run the offense, but after Chatman did his AND1 act, it seems as if JJJr. would think, Chatman went for his and now I gotta get mine, he would bring the ball up and miss a three pointer from 35 feet out. I've watched a lot of college basketball this season, and only one team played as selfishly as the titans and that was Western Michigan. What I want is for coach Alexander to address these issues with Chatman and Jackson. Can he ask them to at least make one pass before they shoot the ball? Is that too much to ask? Tony Tolbert would shoot the ball from wherever, whenever, but he didn't seem like a selfish player, he passed the ball sometimes. I think Chatman and Jackson can be taught to do this also.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby TitanTarHeel » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:25 pm

Tacitus651 wrote:A thread where people can criticize BA, JJ, and Vowels without forcing other threads to go off topic. My guess is this thread sets a new board record for number of pages by June.


Tacitus - I got mad love for your effort here. And.......it's sweet how naively optimistic you are that somehow the board will maintain the self discipline to keep topics on topic. I want to live in that world haha. :lol:

Arguably you can narrow all our ills on the court to the coaching staff and their decisions and how they are getting our guys prepared. Then again blame does have to go to players individually. As someone pointed out, JJJ and Chatman are indeed very selfish on the offensive end -- and they have minimal conscience about it (nor to the coaches seem to be getting in their ear about it)

The overall offensive set and scheme? Eh. No idea what we are trying to do.
Defense? It's only been chaotic from the standpoint of we chase around the ball and give up so many high percentage shots.
Year over year player development -- minimal to say the least.
Player rotations and roles -- Prince being among our most important players over the last third of the season, and not playing at all in the first third is damning. As is the regression of some players (or a failure for them to flourish in roles given), and the major bummer of a returning senior, all conference talent not being able to pass classes and stay eligible.
All this amounted to the worst RPI, worst record in Titan basketball history.

With all that I've named, you have to ask -- what ELSE could have gone wrong? Not much, we've ticked all the boxes in this historically awful season.

AD Vowels has built this world via the hiring of the staff. (we haven't talked about the disaster on the women's hoops team side here).

There is so much failure and poor performance for blame and accountability to be spread far and wide at Calihan Hall. The janitor? Nice guy, he should be considered to be broomed out (see what I did there by accident?)

I feel a shade better, thank you Tact for giving me the outlet. Although it's kind of a 'scream into the void' feeling, but I'm slightly more contented now.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Titan Jim » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:43 pm

Airing of Grievances?!?!? Is it Festivus alreaday?
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:50 pm

Thanks, TarHeel. Most of the credit should go to Commissioner, as he had the idea to create a thread for 96 to complain. I was also tired of threads getting off topic. I genuinely wanted a thread for people's top 3 desired opponents and, of course, it turned into "Vowels forced Ray to hire JJ and JJJ is a ball hog" thread #52.

This board will remain disciplined, because I'm announcing right here and now that I will be issuing official Tacitus Off Topic Citations to anyone that goes off topic on any thread. All anti BA, JJ and Vowels posts should be placed here from this date forward.
"Anything that can be done in college basketball can be done from right here.” - Coach Davis
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby ptctitan » Sat Mar 10, 2018 3:59 pm

I did not see your thread before I pulled the trigger in the other thread. It's a good idea. So, here is a cut and paste of my post in the schedule thread.

******************************************************************************************************

None of us has first hand knowledge of the events that affected the team this year and last year. All of us rely upon second hand information coupled with our observations of the play on the floor during games. Finally, each of us has our own opinions about the talent and skill of various players.

The problem with second hand information, aka hearsay, is that the recipient of that information usually receives one side of the story. For example, no one has heard publicly the complete set of facts surrounding the comments that led to BA's leave of absence. We have only heard the side of the story put forth by the player's parents and their lawyer. What prompted BA's profane reply? We don't know. Maybe the player's words or actions merited a strong rebuke. If the incident involved a response that was merited but unacceptably profane, then that is a much different situation than the one portrayed in the media.

As to the PG situation, I have stated my opinion. I recall that it took Dennis Boyd until very late in his junior year before he began to play consistently well. Different players take different paths to achieving their maximum potential. Did JJJ shoot us out of several games? Yes. Did he help us win other games? Yes. Did he keep us close in other games? Yes. Is Josh a better PG than JJJ? I don't think so. And part of my opinion is informed by the fact that Josh was not the PG on the championship Western HS team. Brailen Neeley was. Should Josh play significant minutes in each game? Yes. I happen to think that Josh is better at 2-guard or combo guard. Were our W-L results any better when JJJ did not start after his injury at NKU? The W-L percentage was the same.

Also, I think a major cause of the unacceptably poor W-L record is simply the components of the roster. Since NJ graduated, we have lacked a bona fide post player, a PG, and length at guard and on the wings. Because we are smaller, we must double the opponents' post more frequently than the better teams. That leaves uncontested outside shots available because one perimeter player is doubling the post. And then, we are running a 6 foot guard at them instead of a 6'4" to 6'7" defender. It takes more than 2 recruiting classes to change that equation.

Since we do not know firsthand what issues are facing this team, none of our opinions, including mine, are fully informed. Also, since the same leadership that hired Vowels and BA remains in charge of hiring their replacements, if their (Vowels and BA) lack of competence is the cause of the poor W-L records of the men's BB team this year, then I do not have a lot of confidence that the same group of trustees would hire someone better. In general, it is always bad to make wholesale leadership changes if the issue is an internal one on the team. And if the issue is one of culture change as implied by titanmike, it can be addressed by other less disruptive means. That should be the preferred solution over a wholesale changing of the guard. This is true even if the university faced no monetary issues.

Since I have no firsthand knowledge of what really caused this year, I defer in favor of not blowing up the entire personnel structure in a fit of anger over a couple of bad seasons. This does not mean that I am happy with the W-L results, think that BA has not failed so far, or that JJJ is a great PG. It simply means that I acknowledge my limits of knowledge of the facts; and, therefore, my opinion as to what should be done is not fully informed. In that case, my general tendency is not to clean house when the solution may not require such drastic action and when those in charge of hiring the replacements are not guaranteed to improve the situation.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby ptctitan » Sat Mar 10, 2018 4:15 pm

Some thoughts based upon grievances aired above.

Injuries appeared to play a role in the failure of Allen and Blackshear to improve or flourish this year.

I think that when Jaleel appeared at the Wayne St game looking more like the Sta-Puff Marshmallow Man from the original Ghostbusters than the warrior of 2016-17, we should have known that we were in trouble. Most of our expectations for improvement assumed that we were getting the 2016-17 Jaleel.

Prince's minutes fell off when BA was on the leave of absence. In the 4th game after his return, Prince began to play significantly more minutes - except when he was in foul trouble or the game so far gone that he was rested.

As to young Jermaine, after his injury at NKU, his 3-point shooter was sharply curtailed.

Defensively, I think that Chatman was a step down from Jenkins. He turned out not to be as quick as Chris.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby udballer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:10 pm

It is not my intent to debate with PTC on this thread... but I disagree with so much of this I need to post.

ptctitan wrote:For example, no one has heard publicly the complete set of facts surrounding the comments that led to BA's leave of absence. We have only heard the side of the story put forth by the player's parents and their lawyer. What prompted BA's profane reply? We don't know. Maybe the player's words or actions merited a strong rebuke. If the incident involved a response that was merited but unacceptably profane, then that is a much different situation than the one portrayed in the media.


Merited a strong rebuke? How about a good "hit the showers" and subsequent benching? There was no excuse for "SMD" and it surely isn't warranted in any case, regardless of the other side of the story. "SMD" itself has never been argued... which is plenty disgusting in its own right. For those who argue that it is commonplace for a 42 year old coach to say to a RS Junior in college, I simply disagree.

ptctitan wrote:As to the PG situation, I have stated my opinion. I recall that it took Dennis Boyd until very late in his junior year before he began to play consistently well. Different players take different paths to achieving their maximum potential. Did JJJ shoot us out of several games? Yes. Did he help us win other games? Yes. Did he keep us close in other games? Yes. Is Josh a better PG than JJJ? I don't think so. And part of my opinion is informed by the fact that Josh was not the PG on the championship Western HS team. Brailen Neeley was. Should Josh play significant minutes in each game? Yes. I happen to think that Josh is better at 2-guard or combo guard. Were our W-L results any better when JJJ did not start after his injury at NKU? The W-L percentage was the same.


I agree that JJJ shot us out of several games and I also agree that he helped us win "other games". The issue is that we were 8-24, so you need to look at those two statements as a weighted average. Helping us beat Houston Baptist (who sucks, by the way) in OT does not wash out 15 games full of selfish play.

Is Josh a better PG than JJJ this season? Absolutely. And the part of your opinion regarding Detroit Western International just flat-out doesn't make any sense. Neely was a mainstay on that team and can only play PG, hence he was the point guard. Your argument is like stating that because Mateen Cleaves was not the starting PG on Flint Northern when they won the state title (that honor went to Torrey Gist), that somehow correlates to JJJ being a better PG than Cleaves... which is ridiculous. In addition, if Neely were on the Titans this past season... he also would have been a better PG option than JJJ. Fact is that JJJ's strengths have always been in his ability to score. He is a good ball handler, but also more of a SG and not a true PG. Problem is that he's about 5'7" and completely ineffective as a SG at this level... so he needs to be in at PG. My issue (as well as the general board consensus outside of yourself) is simply that he should have been out there as a backup PG about 15-20 minutes per game until he proved that he can be consistently good at this level... which he has yet to show. There is nothing wrong with earning time... and please don't respond with your canned "he must have earned the time in practice" response. If practice doesn't translate to the actual games, who cares?

ptctitan wrote:Also, I think a major cause of the unacceptably poor W-L record is simply the components of the roster. Since NJ graduated, we have lacked a bona fide post player, a PG, and length at guard and on the wings. Because we are smaller, we must double the opponents' post more frequently than the better teams. That leaves uncontested outside shots available because one perimeter player is doubling the post. And then, we are running a 6 foot guard at them instead of a 6'4" to 6'7" defender. It takes more than 2 recruiting classes to change that equation.


Agreed we lack a bona fide post player, and (so far) through 3 BA/JJ/Canaan recruiting cycles... we still lack a bona fide post player.

Agree we lack a true PG, and (so far) through 3 BA/JJ/Canaan recruiting cycles... we still lack a true PG. Check that, we were given Dre Black. No disrespect to Dre, but he is not the recipe for competing in any D1 conference.

The rest of your post makes total sense (on paper) as to why we could potentially give up some of the worst outside shooting percentages in D1 athletics. Unfortunately, being at a lot of the games, I again have to disagree. The putrid defense did not appear to be specific to someone always being caught double-teaming a post player. The defensive issues ran much deeper than that. The fact that we are "running a 6 foot guard at them" also does not appear to have been addressed through the first three recruiting cycles.

ptctitan wrote:
Since we do not know firsthand what issues are facing this team, none of our opinions, including mine, are fully informed. Also, since the same leadership that hired Vowels and BA remains in charge of hiring their replacements, if their (Vowels and BA) lack of competence is the cause of the poor W-L records of the men's BB team this year, then I do not have a lot of confidence that the same group of trustees would hire someone better. In general, it is always bad to make wholesale leadership changes if the issue is an internal one on the team. And if the issue is one of culture change as implied by titanmike, it can be addressed by other less disruptive means. That should be the preferred solution over a wholesale changing of the guard. This is true even if the university faced no monetary issues.


I prefer a wholesale leadership change, at least at the Vowels and coaching staff levels. The "promise" that BA offered (at least as I recall) was focused on (1) selling the program to potential recruits and (2) being an ambassador of the university. Between hollow recruiting classes (outside of staff blood relations) and the SMD suspension, he does not even receive a passing grade where he was expected to excel. That's scary. Add in the assumed deficiency (which was probably accurate) regarding in-game coaching ability and his tenure has been a major failure.

I'm confident that I'll cut and paste this post following his 15-17 season next year before we head into year 4 of this leadership.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:22 pm

Mr. Vowels,

I don't know if you read this board. In case you do, I wanted to share this link with you:
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=AzsaQf-8XeE

If Titan fans agree unanimously on anything, it's that we want you GONE. You're ruining our university's athletic program. Do the honorable thing and RESIGN.
"Anything that can be done in college basketball can be done from right here.” - Coach Davis
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby udballer » Sat Mar 10, 2018 5:24 pm

ptctitan wrote:And then, we are running a 6 foot guard at them instead of a 6'4" to 6'7" defender. It takes more than 2 recruiting classes to change that equation.


One more statement. No, it doesn't take more than 2 recruiting classes to change that situation. It takes more than BA's 2 recruiting classes to change it. Hindsight being 20/20 (though some of us thought it was a good idea prior to it being hindsight), I'd venture to say that a scholarship offer and signing of Eric Williams Jr. last year would have went a long way toward resolving that issue this past season. Williams Jr. went on to average 15 points and 8 rebounds in the A-10 as a frosh this season. Tough to imagine BA couldn't have snagged him away from D2 Davis and Elkins if he thought he needed someone 6'-5" to run out at a shooter rather than 5'7" JJJ.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby uofdfan1983 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 6:30 pm

I know enough to be dangerous so I'll try not to be.
1) 96 and Tac are tiresome. 100% negativity is like peeing in the wind all day long. After awhile, it's your only source of warmth.
2) Things started on the positive in pre-season and then an internal incident turned things negative and THEN SMD happened and the ensuing suspension caused a rift in the team that only got worse as the season went on.
3) SMD was an attempt at humor that did not go over well. It was not handled well in the aftermath by BA and others. It was no big deal but it helped grow the rift that was already brewing.
4) JJJ played too much.
5) The coaches were not all on the same page and players chose sides.
6) I am SO sick of reading about dropping to Div II or III. It's not happening and those who talk about it are just blowing steam off.

That's all I'm posting about what I know. I still believe BA can turn this around and I am behind him 100%. Give him next year and let's roll out the basketballs again this summer.

In the end, we had a crappy year, 2nd one in a row. But we also had 7 bball players on the honor roll. We all focus on the two who couldn't make the grade but what about the 7 who made us proud? The team had an implosion this year. Things will change. You only need good chemistry and good leadership and about 8 good players and a good distribution of sizes, talents, etc. to win in college basketball. I still expect my University to reach the heights again. I hope it's with BA. If not, someone else will lead us there.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Tacitus651 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:21 pm

Tom, respectfully, what reason can you give that UDM is immune from falling to D2 or D3? Honestly, when I back up 96, it's often in jest or just to ruffle feathers. You're basically saying that we can't possibly fall to a lower division. I've heard people say things like Garibaldi is committed to D1 athletics. I tend to think that's true, but as I stated on another thread, Garibaldi is 67 and won't be president forever. And, ultimately, presidents work for trustees. We don't know who will be university president in 10 years. We don't know who will be on the board. Respectfully, I could easily see a well educated board of trustees concluding that a losing MBB is not bringing in enough money and publicity to justify the cost of D1 athletics. If attendance stays abysmally low like this and the program isn't turned around, I very much could see the university doing an analysis about converting to D3 because you're getting student athletes to pay sticker, spending much less on personnel, and much less on travel.

I'm not predicting we will go D3, but saying it's outside the realm of possibility doesn't ring true to me.
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby Titans96 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 7:43 pm

Tom, it is you that is tiresome. Plus, it's not "your" University, it is "our" University. You are not the King! "Dilly, Dilly!"

I do want to dig deeper into your comment about "The coaches were not all on the same page and players chose sides". What the hell is that all about? Isn't BA the Head Coach, and why would the other coaches not be step in step with the head coach - he is their boss (one would think)? I know the answer. It's because your buddy Vowels forced your buddy JJSr onto Ray, and JJSr was also forced onto BA. I know enough to be dangerous too Tom! No one except you and Vowels want JJSr anywhere near this program, and he is the reason there is discord between the coaches. He is also the reason players are choosing sides. He is also the reason JJJr is allowed to run free without being benched (for the obvious reason that he is terrible).

The "rift in the team" is the result of poor AD leadership and an AD listening to the wrong people when making decisions about his staff.

Let's call it as it is, and stop trying to play your agenda off on this board. And yes, D3 is an option if the program continues to lose all support from the fans and the alumni. Again, I know enough to be dangerous too! Remember when you and others were complaining about Ray and the poor attendance numbers when we were still averaging above 2,000 people per game? I do, look it up. I have not heard your complaints now when we are maybe at 1,000 fans and more likely 600 fans/game.

What kind of damn freak show is going on with this program? Why can't BA run a program without having to worry about his assistant coaches back-stabbing him?
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby MooseGuy1 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:20 pm

One of my grievances is that the forum has become a lot less fun. Disagreeing and debating is enjoyable but this has descended into personal attacks by posters on other posters. The season was a bitter pill, true. But is a difficult basketball season reason enough for people who should be essentially friends to get this angry at each other? What happened to a sense of community with various and divergent views getting together to discuss things in a civil and respectful manner?
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Re: Official Airing of Grievances Thread

Postby uofdfan1983 » Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:30 pm

Agenda? You don't have an agenda, 96?

It is "my" University in the sense that it is where I went to college and earned 2 degrees so I take pride in it. It also "your" University for your own reasons. Of course it is "our" University and we need hundreds of thousands who feel that way about the place.

My agenda is simply this: build a stronger University with strong Programs, a vibrant campus, great Professors, an active on-campus dorm community and winning Athletic Programs top-to-bottom. This requires leadership. I believe we have a great leader. Robert is a friend of his but in the end, the Athletic Dept will either grow under Robert's leadership, or it will not. If not, I am sure Dr. Garabaldi will do what he must. Same goes for Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball, Men's Soccer, Softball...you get the point. Overall, the University and The City are both movin' on up together. If enrollment and revenue and donations were decreasing, maybe there would be some truth to Div II/III argument. But the overall strength of the University is improving. If we could get new dorms (i.e., cooperation from City Hall) we'd really be exploding right now.

Just as the Tigers had to start over, so did we. Brad Ausmus was brought in but he wasn't the right choice. So they moved on. We'll get this thing right again and when we do we'll leave OU and the rest of this league in our dust.
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