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Kevin

Jim Whitesell - UB's New Head Coach

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6 hours ago, ed said:

Uh, support that based on who played this year. 

Sure we lose 5 seniors and everything that goes with that but the cupboard isn’t bare. The roster isn’t gutted. When seniors move on the underclassmen have to step up. I expect that from guys like Graves, Jordan and Jeenathan. Add in Johnson and Grant still should be enough to compete in what will be a weak MAC. We need to now hit the trail and round out the roster. Get some height and depth. And begin recruiting for this upcoming season and beyond. The real work begins now.

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We opened the search. We got the best candidate. Best candidate means the best person we CAN get. We only took a week and people are complaining that we could have just hired Whitesell last week?

I think this hire makes a lot of sense. We will see in 4 years if we made the right move. There are plenty of coaches who grind all their lives and then get recognition later on in their career. I think Whitesell is one and I am hopeful that we celebrate him in 4 years. 

Let’s get to work. Despite the negativity, the core is there. We just need couple extra pieces. Also don’t discount guys like Fagan and Bertram. I’ve seen this over and over again. Guys just look like they don’t belong but all of a sudden, things click in their junior or senior year. 

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17 hours ago, promotherobot said:

I'd love to know why we couldn't land these guys? If you weren't going to pay the going rate, why go through the charade?

Salary isn’t the only thing that coaches consider. 

Facilities. Recruiting budget. Buy game budget. Support of athletic department and school. Priority level within athletic department. Community and student support. Media coverage  

Many factors. 

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12 hours ago, clodney said:

We were committed to paying over $800k a few weeks ago to Nate Oats and now we’re paying $300k to Whitesell? This is a colossal step back in the public perception over whether or not we’re committed to this program. 

Still, I don’t hate the hire and I hope he maintains the style we have grown to enjoy. Good luck, Coach. 

No. It was like 650 for Nate. The rest was contingent on being able to raise the money. 

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To slightly change topic, who do we think could be a good assistant for recruiting? I was thinking Battle might be a good choice mainly because of his background here and being young, along with bring a former player, might help inspire some kids to come play here.

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2 hours ago, promotherobot said:

If JW is the guy, that's fine. My beef is with the delay in hiring him. It's hard to argue he was your guy when you spent a week chasing other candidates. It just looks bad and the uncertainty might have led to a few recruits de-committing.

We'll never know if those recruits were originally thumbs up or down as far as JW. I've seen recruits not fitting a system being implemented released. I fully expect a pace slowed down and more complicated defensive switches. Higher IQ needed.

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53 minutes ago, ubmae86 said:

To slightly change topic, who do we think could be a good assistant for recruiting? I was thinking Battle might be a good choice mainly because of his background here and being young, along with bring a former player, might help inspire some kids to come play here.

Do  you really think that after being turned down for the top job he would want to come to UB as an assistant (even with family in the area)?

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I gave this more thought overnight.  I still have some thoughts I want to get out there.

This hire was THE MOST IMPORTANT HIRE IN THE HISTORY OF UB ATHLETICS.  I write this, since no other team has been in the national picture for such an extended period of time.  30+ wins in MBB.  A national ranking for several months.  A 6 seed in the tourney.  The incoming recruiting class was to be their best ever.  Would UB continue their trajectory towards sustained national relevance and local relevance or go back to anonymity?  This is why, I feel, this hire was so important.  We are at a bifurcation point.

Okay…

Oats leaves.  This happens.  The primary goal should have been to maintain that recruiting class at all costs.  Yes…maybe we would lose one or two, but that should have been the focus.  UB was beating the other teams because of their players and their coaching.  We know we would get a new coach, but could we keep the same level of top-notch player?  Heck, sometimes players win in spite of the coaching.

If this was the goal, UB should have focused on Hodgson right away.  Alnutt should have made Hodgson the interim head coach.  Do you think he would have gotten on that plane and/or been pictured with an Alabama shirt with a recruit if he was the “interim head coach”?   No.

The decision to name Whitesell the interim head coach had its merits.  He was more experienced and, thus, in a vacuum, reasonable.  But this was shortsighted and underscores Alnutt’s inexperience.  It was the wrong decision to name Whitesell the interim head coach.  He had another choice to help keep the class together and he choose wrongly since he didn’t anticipate what would happen.  UB Men’s Basketball is the victim of Alnutt learning on the job, unfortunately.  With Hodgson as the "interim head coach", he could have been recruiting hard to keep his guys (even Hawkins).  They could have still gone with a national search with Hodgson as the interim if they wanted.  At least we would/could have gotten Hodgson to work for UB during this important time.

Now we have Whitesell, whose skill is not necessarily associated with recruiting.  He has no recruiter on the staff at the moment.  And he is supposed to salvage the class?   Once again, I feel this was the most important hire in the history of UB athletics.

UB could have gotten a higher name as a coach (e.g. like Hurley) or gone the continuity route more immediately (like Hodgson).  They hired a search firm and, seemingly, did not realize they would have to spend $500,000 or more for these hires or weren’t as attractive as they thought.  Instead, they go the Whitesell route 10 days on.

This was a fail of epic proportions in execution for what was so important.  Could it work out?  Sure…there is that possibility.   But I would not bet on it at all.  I mean, I am a fan and will always be so I hope it works out.  But this was just bad execution.  Sure, the AD has spun this to say that Whitesell was the guy he wanted all along, but that just opens up very reasonable questions about the execution of the plan.  Disappointing is an understatement.

 

 

 

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41 minutes ago, UB92 said:

I gave this more thought overnight.  I still have some thoughts I want to get out there.

This hire was THE MOST IMPORTANT HIRE IN THE HISTORY OF UB ATHLETICS.  I write this, since no other team has been in the national picture for such an extended period of time.  30+ wins in MBB.  A national ranking for several months.  A 6 seed in the tourney.  The incoming recruiting class was to be their best ever.  Would UB continue their trajectory towards sustained national relevance and local relevance or go back to anonymity?  This is why, I feel, this hire was so important.  We are at a bifurcation point.

Okay…

Oats leaves.  This happens.  The primary goal should have been to maintain that recruiting class at all costs.  Yes…maybe we would lose one or two, but that should have been the focus.  UB was beating the other teams because of their players and their coaching.  We know we would get a new coach, but could we keep the same level of top-notch player?  Heck, sometimes players win in spite of the coaching.

If this was the goal, UB should have focused on Hodgson right away.  Alnutt should have made Hodgson the interim head coach.  Do you think he would have gotten on that plane and/or been pictured with an Alabama shirt with a recruit if he was the “interim head coach”?   No.

The decision to name Whitesell the interim head coach had its merits.  He was more experienced and, thus, in a vacuum, reasonable.  But this was shortsighted and underscores Alnutt’s inexperience.  It was the wrong decision to name Whitesell the interim head coach.  He had another choice to help keep the class together and he choose wrongly since he didn’t anticipate what would happen.  UB Men’s Basketball is the victim of Alnutt learning on the job, unfortunately.  With Hodgson as the "interim head coach", he could have been recruiting hard to keep his guys (even Hawkins).  They could have still gone with a national search with Hodgson as the interim if they wanted.  At least we would/could have gotten Hodgson to work for UB during this important time.

Now we have Whitesell, whose skill is not necessarily associated with recruiting.  He has 

The naming of an interim head coach is simply having the most senior member of your staff hold the program together while you decide the path forward for the program. 

You cant name a junior member of the staff as the interim head coach because that is a statement about the path of the program. That is a decision and would be done in haste. 

Also, I believe Hodgson was gone and not available when Whitesell was named interim. You don’t give the title and power over the program to someone who just skipped town. 

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Also UB knew what they would need to pay top applicants.  It wasn’t that they had a problem paying $700 for a coach. It’s that they weren’t convinced that they would get a winner for the money.  Paying Oats that money was a safe bet but paying that much to win 17 games a year for the next four years would have been a financial bust. 

They will pay when it is warranted. Not before. 

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1 hour ago, ButlerAlumDad said:

We'll never know if those recruits were originally thumbs up or down as far as JW. I've seen recruits not fitting a system being implemented released. I fully expect a pace slowed down and more complicated defensive switches. Higher IQ needed.

God I hope you’re wrong about that. Fast paced will bring in the 3 ️ + recruits 

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, xDerekRx said:

Im not sure how you figure that so quickly?

If he keeps the current roster intact, maybe adds here or there, we should be very good this year.

I like a lot of our current roster, however I don't see how we don’t go back to the Reggie days, in terms of expectations this year.  Try and win 20 games, get to Cleveland and have a shot at winning it.  If we do, 13-seed range and pray for an update.  Days of top seed hopes and all are pretty much gone.  We have a few nice pieces, but losing the recruits and not having a inside presence pretty much dooms us, IMO

Edited by JoeyRattlesnake

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20 hours ago, Kevin said:

I was told this by one of the candidates. Certain members on the board can confirm (I showed them the report)

Sorry if it offends you, but it was true. 

I'll also follow it with this, which also came from the candidate:

"And you are very very confused about the business if you are saying you are not sure why someone would turn the job down lol"

Any context as to why?  Why did no one want the job?  Administration?  Salary?  Tall task of rebuilding?

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1 hour ago, mikescherrer8 said:

Can this clusterfuck of a thread be locked? Lol. Some of you on here are idiots.

Can we not lock threads because people don't want to read the replies? This is an open forum if you don't wanna read it, don't click on it.

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2 hours ago, JoeyRattlesnake said:

I like a lot of our current roster, however I don't see how we don’t go back to the Reggie days, in terms of expectations this year.  Try and win 20 games, get to Cleveland and have a shot at winning it.  If we do, 13-seed range and pray for an update.  Days of top seed hopes and all are pretty much gone.  We have a few nice pieces, but losing the recruits and not having a inside presence pretty much dooms us, IMO

You just described Oats first year. 

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19 minutes ago, dutchcountry7 said:

You just described Oats first year. 

But isn't that where we revert back too next season?  Best case scenario? Then try to build back up.  To me if we win the MAC tournament next season that will be a major accomplishment.

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Posted (edited)

Oats first year had Perkins as a freshman. Admittedly, he had limited minutes.  Kidiri and Smart were on the team but pretty much sat. At this point the cupboard is bare regarding effective big men for next year. Just looked at stats for A Johnson and G Grant - Johnson looks pretty solid, but Grant, at least from what he did at Houston, doesn’t impress. Realistically, what is the probability of Buffalo picking up a solid big this late for next year? Slim.

 

Edited by squire17

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3 minutes ago, squire17 said:

Oats first year had Perkins as a freshman. Admittedly, he had limited minutes.  Kidiri and Smart were on the team but pretty much sat. At this point the cupboard is bare regarding effective big men for next year. Just looked at stats for A Johnson and G Grant - Johnson looks pretty solid, but Grant, at least from what he did at Houston, doesn’t impress. Realistically, what is the probability of Buffalo picking up a solid big this late for next year? Slim.

Totally agree with the lack of big men on the roster.  Its a desperate area of both need and concern.  I expect big things from Johnson.  Grant hopefully provides a quality role player and senior leadership.  

As for picking up players...several of us have said it.  There are over 500 transfers out there and the high school recruiting isn't over yet either.  We will be very late to the party but there are players we can go after.  How good they will be depends.  But there will be plenty of opportunity in the front court.  Our back court seems set for next season.

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Posted (edited)
40 minutes ago, squire17 said:

Realistically, what is the probability of Buffalo picking up a solid big this late for next year? Slim.

 

Derrik Smits 7’2 from Valparaiso 

Joey Brunk 6’11 from Butler

Jalone Friday 6’10 from Abilene Christian

Alihan Demir 6’9 from Drexel

Pat Andree 6’8 from Lehigh 

All are solid players with good track records of solid post presence and all are on the transfer portal and the best part is they would all be immediately eligible to play

The best big on the transfer list that I would love to see UB try to add is 2 ️ Noah Horchler from North Florida, however he would have to sit out a year

Edited by 961819
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36 minutes ago, 961819 said:

Derrik Smits 7’2 from Valparaiso 

Joey Brunk 6’11 from Butler

Jalone Friday 6’10 from Abilene Christian

Alihan Demir 6’9 from Drexel

Pat Andree 6’8 from Lehigh 

All are solid players with good track records of solid post presence and all are on the transfer portal and the best part is they would all be immediately eligible to play

The best big on the transfer list that I would love to see UB try to add is 2 ️ Noah Horchler from North Florida, however he would have to sit out a year

Derrick Smits - good stats... Joey Brunk - he’d work too. Malone Friday - pretty low conference. Aliyah Demir - Meh. Pat Andree - like his stats...not the conference he got them in. 

I guess beggars can’t be choosers, but hope UB grabs somebody who can play defense, rebound, and score.

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, squire17 said:

Derrick Smits - good stats... Joey Brunk - he’d work too. Malone Friday - pretty low conference. Aliyah Demir - Meh. Pat Andree - like his stats...not the conference he got them in. 

I guess beggars can’t be choosers, but hope UB grabs somebody who can play defense, rebound, and score.

Agreed, I hope Smits or Brunk end up with us somehow but I would take any of them given our current lack of height 

Horchler is like Demajeo Wiggins 

Edited by 961819

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1 hour ago, DooleyBull06 said:

But isn't that where we revert back too next season?  Best case scenario? Then try to build back up.  To me if we win the MAC tournament next season that will be a major accomplishment.

Even with Oats and all the recruits they wanted, the program was reverting back to hoping they won the MAC for a bid. 

This is the only year the program has been at atlarge bid team.  It’s always been a MAC tournament championship or nothing.  

 

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2 minutes ago, dutchcountry7 said:

Even with Oats and all the recruits they wanted, the program was reverting back to hoping they won the MAC for a bid. 

This is the only year the program has been at atlarge bid team.  It’s always been a MAC tournament championship or nothing.  

 

It will likely always be that way. I’d like to get out of the MAC but don’t see it happening 

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