06 March 2011

On Carmody and winningest senior class

FACT: Juice Thompson will leave Northwestern as the winningest player in history.

QUESTION: Has a coach ever been fired when the above is true?

We don't know the answer, but we suspect that, outside some kind of scandal, few if any coaches have been fired under such circumstances since it is a clear indication that the coach has a program on the rise. This suggests that firing Carmody would go against a precedent that inherently adjusts in some way the differences across programs.

Furthermore it is more than likely that John Shurna et al will break this winningest mark next year. Is this a sign of a program that has maxed out under a coach or even is pointed downward as NU blogger LTP has suggested? No!

As an aside we've seen arguments for firing Carmody on the basis of his recruiting. We agree that recruiting is paramount to a program's success, but we wonder how grounded in reality the criticism of Carmody's recruiting is. From our vantage point, NU's roster is as stacked with talent as it has been in DECADES. That says to us that Carmody is recruiting as well as can be reasonably expected at NU. Until something fundamental changes with the program, only coaches who can squeeze water out of a rock could do measurably better than what we're seeing on the recruiting front these days.

In short we feel that Carmody has the program on the rise and is doing a fine job within the context of NU's specific history. There is no reason to lock him up to a long term deal, but to fire him at this point would be placing a blind eye to the context in which he has been toiling over the past decade or so.