Archive for January, 2011

Morris Situation

Posted: January 11, 2011 by El Swann in Clemson, Football, Opinion, Predictions, TigerNet

I will open by saying that I can’t give you anymore insight than most of us already know. At this point I still think that Chad Morris stays with his commitment to Clemson.

I could understand taking the job at Tulsa, but I see this as a lateral move for a guy who has a chance to make a name for himself in a major conference. Sure, being a head coach is important to Morris furthering his career, but If his system works well at Clemson bigger jobs than Tulsa will be calling.

I would guess the last hold up would be his family. If they are happy in Oklahoma then I expect them to play a big role in his decision. However, it sounded like his children were excited about being Tigers. That might be a bigger deal than some might think.

I’ll guess he stays with Clemson, but it will be a tough decision for Coach Morris.

The Waiting Game

Posted: January 7, 2011 by El Swann in Clemson, Football, Opinion, TigerNet

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait for Dabo Swinney to secure the new coaching staff. I might be reading into the situation too much, but the longer these spots are open the harder they will be to fill. All the while, I think fans, coaches and recruits are growing more and more concerned about the direction of Clemson’s program.

At Clemson, I think trying to hire a coach is sort of like trying to sell someone a used car. They might be looking for a good deal, but they are a bit skeptical about how long they will get with their investment. Let’s face it, we are not selling a new Porsche, we are selling a used Camry.

When you look at the Marion Hobby situation, it’s clear that is what he is thinking. Being secure at Duke is a lot more comfortable than possibly searching for another job next season. Losing his job is possible at Duke in a year, it’s likely at Clemson if things don’t turn around. Talk about having your football program not selling itself.

At this point, Monday couldn’t get here sooner for me. I think all the decisions will be in. I’m crossing my fingers on that. I’m past being concerned about who the hire is going to be, it’s the waiting and worrying about our image. Not that 6-7 seasons cast a brilliant light, but not filling these spots in a timely manner is beginning to look like a mess.

 

So far it’s been like a soap opera trying to follow the news. A coach is coming! No he isn’t. No wait, maybe he is. Now there is a new target. He is in town meeting with Dabo. Breaking news comes and goes each hour, but no one knows for sure. Personally, I think it hurts our image. Clemson looks lost and desperate.

It just seems that with all of the different reports out there, Clemson’s football program comes across as being unappealing to potential coaches. Eventually that will trickle down to our recruits and with signing day around the corner the heat will be on. I’m hoping our recruits don’t begin to see it the same way. The last thing we can afford is for this class to fall apart.

I’m not being naive, I understand that a head coach can’t win for losing. If Coach Swinney had hired Chad Morris quickly, many or us, (probably me included) would have accused of not evaluating all of  his options. Coach Swinney has to make some great hires to secure himself more time at Clemson. It’s an important decision.

I just gather that our rivals are laughing at how the whole situation is being handled. Not just by the staff, but how it’s played out so far on websites and in forums. Maybe that doesn’t matter to you, but I think we are digging a deeper hole right now. It’s getting even harder for me to envision Clemson with Dabo Swinney as the head coach in 2012.

 

Risky Business

Posted: January 4, 2011 by El Swann in Clemson, Football, Opinion, Predictions

I’m still getting my mind around all of the recent changes for the Clemson coaching staff. I can’t say I was caught off guard by Billy Napier or Andre Powell being excused from his position. While some of the offensive issues were exasperated by the loss of Andre Ellington it was becoming clear that we had little to no offensive identity and that fell on Napier.

As for Powell, I hate to say it, but I didn’t think he fit in. He always seemed a bit cross at reporters and almost unhappy. I might be reading into it too much, but that was always my impression. It sometimes seemed like an almost, “You are questioning me?” attitude.

As for the Napier situation, it may have come down to the tug-of-war match that went on between both Coach Swinney. I have it on good account that we never truly saw Napier’s system because Coach Swinney would make his adjustments during the games. Napier’s hands were tied. Ultimately, both guys were at fault in my opinion. They should have put their differences aside and found the best scheme for Clemson.

With Chris Rumph heading to Alabama, which was a surprise to me, how can you argue with that move? He doubles his pay and ends up with one of the best coaches on one of the best teams in college football. It might even be enough to carry the #1 recruit in the country to the Crimson Tide. Put yourself in Rumph’s shoes. Now remove the orange colored glasses. Yep, your leaving for Alabama in a hurry.

As far as the decision that Coach Swinney makes in his hiring of these positions, one thing is clear, it is now do or die for this entire staff. I don’t see anything short of 8 wins and possibly an ACC Championship birth giving this staff another year. The bowl attendance was a huge wake up call for the athletic department and the administration. I would expect donations to IPTAY to follow suit.

We have even more holes to fill on the coaching staff and ultimately a great recruiting class could end up falling flat. We haven’t seen a mass exodus from the recruits, but no one can say for sure. Add to that the fact that these coaches are not going to come to Clemson on the cheap or with short contracts. They know the writing is on the wall and they will take advantage of that.

I always knew year three for Coach Swinney would be the key year. I’ve been supportive of him having a chance to prove his worth at Clemson. I am a fan of an emotional coach and I like how fired up Dabo is before, during, and after games. I don’t think he holds any punches, even if it upsets some of the fan base.  I like when he gets on fans for being down about the program. I don’t want a coach who hides behind a curtain. I want my coach to wear his emotions on his sleeve.

I would venture to guess that on today’s date next year I will be writing about a new head coach at Clemson. However, I will give 100% to Coach Swinney and this team for the upcoming year. I think that the offensive coordinator will be Chad Morris and it’s a risky choice. Compare him all you want to Gus Malzahn, but I don’t know if I’m buying it. I just don’t think what works at school X will always work at school Y.

There are no sure bets, but Dabo appears to be going all in with a pair of fives. It’s going to be tough to win this hand.