2021 Coaches on Hot Seat

Which coach(es) should be fired/replaced?


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I understand many programs should be understanding that this is a difficult year due to COVID and all the things that are out of their control. With that said, there are some no brainers in terms of coaches who have outlived their stay and a change is best for all parties. What coaches are on the hot seat and who's is heating up?

I decided to include Cal's coach but this is only her 2nd year? So I guess if things are still disastrous next year things heat up a lot for her but they look absolutely awful right now.
 

DefenseBB

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I think you need to include the contracts expiration for each candidate as no one will be fired with more than a year left and probably none will be fired even with a year left in this pandemic. Anyone with a contract expiring is at Risk though and not one of the people you list has an expiring contract. In fact there are 2 coaches whose contracts expire in 2022-Fargas and White, so cheer up my esteemed SEC colleague if you can raise $350-$700 maybe you can buy out Nikki’s last year but then again you would also have to pay a new coach with limited revenue sources during COVID.
 
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I think you need to include the contracts expiration for each candidate as no one will be fired with more than a year left and probably none will be fired even with a year left in this pandemic. Anyone with a contract expiring is at Risk though and not one of the people you list has an expiring contract. In fact there are 2 coaches whose contracts expire in 2022-Fargas and White, so cheer up my esteemed SEC colleague if you can raise $350-$700 maybe you can buy out Nikki’s last year but then again you would also have to pay a new coach with limited revenue sources during COVID.
I see you and @LETTERL refused to use all your voting options. :rolleyes:

I will work on contract info tomorrow. I'm too tired for that tonight lol. LSU has no issue spending money, we waste enough of it as it is and we over pay doing it every year.
 

bballnut90

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Coale should be the top option considering her ridiculously high salary and recent allegations of being racially insensitive. I doubt they'll can her though if they haven't yet. She has a good trio to build around too but can't get the job done.

White's time is up too in my opinion. Hasn't been able to get Vandy out of the cellar.

Fargas probably should be fired but her team is competitive and in the tournament most years. Too early for Tina Thompson or Whalen.
 

KnightBridgeAZ

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Actually, they all should be on the hot seat, but Thompson, Smith and Whalen have probably not exhausted their welcome yet. If it was up to me, I'd fire the rest of them.
 
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The Purdue coach? They wouldn't have made the tourney last year if there was one. I don't know if they will be a tourney team this year, and that would be 4 years in a row with teams not good enough to make the tourney.

Wake Forest coach? They have a winning record right now but they have not made the tournament since she has been there, this being her 9th season, so if they fall on the wrong side of the bubble that could be something to watch. They have some good seniors so if this is not the year, hard to see next year or the year after being better.

Kansas coach? Never made NIT even and this is year 6.

Colorado coach?

Wisconsin coach?

If we include mid majors, San Diego State? They used to be good but have not made the big dance in a long time.

From the list on the poll I think Auburn, Vanderbilt should make a move. Some of the others like Virginia and Minnesota are trending the wrong way but its too early to make a move.
 

LETTERL

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Wake Forest coach? They have a winning record right now but they have not made the tournament since she has been there, this being her 9th season, so if they fall on the wrong side of the bubble that could be something to watch. They have some good seniors so if this is not the year, hard to see next year or the year after being better.
Jen Hoover has Wake Forest competitive. She was the leader on the best team Wake Forest ever had, back in 1988, the year of their only NCAAT appearance. I don't see Wake Forest cutting the cord on one of their own in the ultra-competitive ACC.
 

Plebe

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The Purdue coach? They wouldn't have made the tourney last year if there was one. I don't know if they will be a tourney team this year, and that would be 4 years in a row with teams not good enough to make the tourney.
Purdue would have been in the tournament last year. Not by a lot, probably an 8 or 9 seed, but they weren't on the bubble.
 

Dillon77

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I think you need to include the contracts expiration for each candidate as no one will be fired with more than a year left and probably none will be fired even with a year left in this pandemic. Anyone with a contract expiring is at Risk though and not one of the people you list has an expiring contract. In fact there are 2 coaches whose contracts expire in 2022-Fargas and White, so cheer up my esteemed SEC colleague if you can raise $350-$700 maybe you can buy out Nikki’s last year but then again you would also have to pay a new coach with limited revenue sources during COVID.

Ah, how right you are, my friend! Length of contract factors into WCBB decisions in oh so many decisions, which is why you wonder why seemingly unmerited extensions are often given at head-scratching times. In any case, like you, I went to my "how long are...." contract search and will jot those down next to coach in question. It kind of becomes a "should they/will they be fired."

On the Poll:
  • Nikki Vargas, LSU (currently 4-6). Contract (extension) up in 2022. Teams play hard, but they're mired in mediocrity. If she can turn this season around and sparkle in 21-22, maybe. If not, probably time to move on.
  • Sherri Coale, Oklahoma (currently 4-5). Pretty sure her contract goes through 2024. She's pedaling hard to keep her head above water, but this slide has been steady. Plug should be pulled, but that's a lot of cash owed her.
  • Stephanie White, Vandy (4-2, with a lot of postponements). Has one or two years left I believe. If it's multiple years she stays, given that Vandy just paid good money for a new football coach. However, this hire doesn't look like it's going to pan out the way they thought in 2016.
  • Lindsey Whelan, Minnesota (2-6). She's an alum, is revered in Minneapolis and is signed through '24. But this is a classic case of, "gee, there's a lot to this..."
  • Terry Williams-Flournoy, Auburn (5-6, 0-3 in SEC). Signed through 22-23. Now, Auburn is one of the universities that comes up with pay-out money whether it should or not. This situation is beyond weird: what was it, 7 (or 8) players transferred. In one year? Don't think it was because of the food. If AD can find some funny money, I'd pull the plug because those defections will catch up in recruiting.
  • Tina Thompson, UVA (0-5, boatload of cancellations). Signed through '23. I'll stay true to earlier comments: this was a bad fit from the start and it's getting worse. Tina's recruiting contacts from Texas are not translating, all the best players from the Boyle years (be that as it may beyond Ms. Willoughby) are gone and two of the best players left transferred. Tina was UVA AD's first big hire and that might save her, but this is pushing UVA back in the ACC.
  • Charmin Smith, Cal (0-10). Whew! She and Tina are in the Ofer ranks. Came into a tough situation and it's staying that way. Contract goes until 2024 so she'll get a few years.

Not on Board
  • Jonathan Tsipis, Wisc. (3-6). He came into a bad situation, made a lot of good moves to improve state recruiting and.....pfft. Then he got the extension through 2024, so I doubt he's going anywhere.
  • Jen Hoover, Wake Forest (6-3). I just did a game prep for the ND-Wake game and was surprised that Jen Hoover had never notched a winning ACC season in nine years. Her teams are competitive. She's got two good seniors and some young talent, so will keep an eye on this game and season. Yes, she's at her alma mater but Danny Manning's huge contract was bought out. We'll see.
  • Sharon Versyp, Purdue (5-4, 2-3 B1G) Contract is done in 21-22. Many Purdue fans were not overjoyed when she got an extension through 21-22. It's not that the Boilermakers are bad, they're mediocre, not exciting and steadily watch Indiana talent go to out of state (Michigan recruits higher ranked Hoosiers).
If some money can be found, I'd recommend the Purdue AD call alum Austin Parkinson who has done an absolutely fabulous job building IUPUI. They're well coached and, coincidentally, his best players are upper classmen. He's ready...so is Purdue.
 

Dillon77

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Purdue would have been in the tournament last year. Not by a lot, probably an 8 or 9 seed, but they weren't on the bubble.

Coach Versyp's contract is up in a year. I think this team is stuck in the middle. Got a suggestion for them in my post...Austin Parkinson of IUPUI, a former Purdue hoopster. I was really impressed with his team the two times I watched them.
 
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I see you and @LETTERL refused to use all your voting options. :rolleyes:

I will work on contract info tomorrow. I'm too tired for that tonight lol. LSU has no issue spending money, we waste enough of it as it is and we over pay doing it every year.

To help out on the contract extensions - Whalen signed an extension back in Feb 2020. It added a year to her contract (ending now in 2024).


Edit - just saw @Dillon77's post after I put mine up. My bad.
 
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nwhoopfan

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How am I not seeing Jody Wynn on this list? She has the worst record in school history by a very wide margin. I've seen enough, she's not gonna get this thing turned around, she needs to go.
 
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Some thoughts:

Auburn - lord she has got to go. The record, the transfers, etc. it’s time and Auburn has the $ to find a good coach. Similar to Auburn softball awhile back. This school can find a good coach.

LSU - this school has potential to be a UNC kind of school. Get a good coach, some good recruits and some momentum. Nikki will kill that if she’s extended. Love her, love the school but she’s not cutting it. Her teams are hard as hell to win against sometimes but the plug needs to be pulled.

Minnesota and Wisconsin - give these coaches 2-3 more. I don’t see harm in doing that. I think the foundation and recruiting base it there but I’d give them one last shot.

Vanderbilt - not too sure about this one. White promised a high powered fast paced offense and I’m just not seeing it. I think the teams have talent but something is just -off-. I think give her 1 more and then pull the plug. Cambridge, Alexander, Hall, Love are all decent so I’m bit sir we a new coach would recruit better.

Washington - not seeing the results or momentum. Good school + Seattle. Thinking a new coach could jump start them.

Kansas - again would give this 1-2 more. I think Kansas can recruit well internationally, and has done so more. Will see how that pans out but coach needs results now.

Oklahoma - her time has come. Cut the cord and pay the buyout or move her into the athletic department.
 

Bigboote

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  • Tina Thompson, UVA (0-5, boatload of cancellations). Signed through '23. I'll stay true to earlier comments: this was a bad fit from the start and it's getting worse. Tina's recruiting contacts from Texas are not translating, all the best players from the Boyle years (be that as it may beyond Ms. Willoughby) are gone and two of the best players left transferred. Tina was UVA AD's first big hire and that might save her, but this is pushing UVA back in the ACC.
I was thinking about this the other day. It just seemed to me that UVA had a good thing going, and a switch went off when Ayeotan couldn't play any more. It seemed like they took a gut punch and have never recovered.

Another thing that occurred to me is that there are just some coaches who can't imprint their personalities onto their teams. Thompson and Lindsey Whalen both excelled by leaving everything they had on the court. Neither of their teams has seemed to adopt the coach's style. Could be that the teams don't have enough talent to appear to play hard, I dunno.
 

huskeynut

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Two points neither of which may be popular. So here we go!

First, do these universities really care about women's basketball? Remember, Oklahoma was going to kill the women's program before they hired Coale. Geno had some major influence there. Schools like LSU, Oklahoma and Auburn are football schools, first and foremost. Are they really willing to pay the buyouts?

Second, the hiring of former players with little or no coaching experience is always a risk. The debate about this fact has been done many times on this board. Success as a player does not guarantee success as a coach. Name recognition does not guarantee success.
 
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How am I not seeing Jody Wynn on this list? She has the worst record in school history by a very wide margin. I've seen enough, she's not gonna get this thing turned around, she needs to go.

She just hasn't been there long. The ones I listed, most have been there 5 or more years. Washington is not looking good and they are not recruiting at the level where you'd think they will make a jump. But do we really think Washington is going to pay to buy out multiple years of her contract? That's why I didn't list her
 

eebmg

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I was thinking about this the other day. It just seemed to me that UVA had a good thing going, and a switch went off when Ayeotan couldn't play any more. It seemed like they took a gut punch and have never recovered.

Another thing that occurred to me is that there are just some coaches who can't imprint their personalities onto their teams. Thompson and Lindsey Whalen both excelled by leaving everything they had on the court. Neither of their teams has seemed to adopt the coach's style. Could be that the teams don't have enough talent to appear to play hard, I dunno.

Not sure what the deal with Thompson is but I have always thought Whalen really suppresses her fiery personality on the sideline to her detriment.
 
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What about Jen Rizzotti at George Washington? Her first two years were good, but she came into a good situation that Tsipis left her. But the longer she is there the team seems to be on downward slope. They lost today to Richmond, scoring only 42 points, to go 0-4 in their league. Year 5 and they will probably be one of the bottom teams in the Atlantic10
 
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. Schools like LSU, Oklahoma and Auburn are football schools, first and foremost. Are they really willing to pay the buyouts?
This may be true but that doesn't mean everything. Football will always be to the forefront because that is the money maker and what allows pretty much every other program to have nice things (mens and womens)

Football is obviously king at LSU but they have invested in a lot of money into the women's programs over the last decade. Best gymnastics facility in the country, new softball performance indoor facility, brand new beach volleyball facilities, updates to locker rooms and increased recruiting budgets for pretty much every women's program.

In WBB's case, Nikki kept getting extended due to @triaddukefan awful ex athletic director who completely gave up on the program. He extended her right before he was replaced. Nikki has been the epitome of mediocrity at LSU. Poor recruiting with no changes in offensive philosophy. She gets to the NCAAT every other year but gets knocked out the first round when she does make it. It isn't good enough to just make the NCAAT in my opinion. With the resources they give the program, much better should be expected. This program is a shadow from Pokey's days with Fowles and Simone. The talent has dried up in BR and if very lifeless these days. Change is needed, its time to move on.


 

DefenseBB

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What about Jen Rizzotti at George Washington? Her first two years were good, but she came into a good situation that Tsipis left her. But the longer she is there the team seems to be on downward slope. They lost today to Richmond, scoring only 42 points, to go 0-4 in their league. Year 5 and they will probably be one of the bottom teams in the Atlantic10
Joe Biden Reaction GIF by Election 2020

Yikes...talk about throwing a live grenade..I am backing away from this post and poster....best of luck to you.
 

nwhoopfan

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She just hasn't been there long. The ones I listed, most have been there 5 or more years. Washington is not looking good and they are not recruiting at the level where you'd think they will make a jump. But do we really think Washington is going to pay to buy out multiple years of her contract? That's why I didn't list her
I thought her contract was 5 years but I just saw an article saying 6. Not sure they can get any worse in 2 1/2 more years with her at the helm, but I'm pretty sure they won't get any better. The longer they wait, the further behind everybody else they get.

Aw, I see she's been added to the poll. She has been in her current position longer than both Whalen and Smith.
 
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Joe Biden Reaction GIF by Election 2020

Yikes...talk about throwing a live grenade..I am backing away from this post and poster....best of luck to you.
I'm not throwing any live grenade, it is a legit question based on record. This is the general WBB forum not the UConn specific one, if we can't separate evaluating a coach on resume just because she graduated from UConn around 25 years ago then that is a little odd
 
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I would give Tina more time yet. She has only had about 7 players eligible for most of the season thus far and they play very hard every game but not enough gas left in the tank late in games. Having said that she has not recruited well so far.
 

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