Found April 03, 2013 on
Down with Goldy:
The Gophers have hired a replacement for Tubby Smith, rarely quickly actually despite the perception that the search was dragging, and they've gone with Rich Pitino, Rick Pitino's son and most recently the head coach of the Florida International Panthers out of the Sun Belt Conference. And, frankly, this is the kind of hire where if anybody tries to definitively tell you it's either a great or a horrible hire you should really punch them in the face because we simply won't know until a few years down the road.
Either way, this is a ballsy hire. Going for a 30-year old with exactly one year of head coaching experience under his belt - well, ask Todd Lickliter how touch it can be to move up from a mid-major (although the Sun Belt may have trended towards the low majors at this point) and Lickliter had six years at Butler before getting demolished in the Big 10. The main thing we know about our new Pitino is that he took FIU from 8-21 to 18-14 and came within two points of making the NCAA Tournament - so that's good. What else do we know?
Well, since 2007 he's either been an assistant at Louisville or Florida or an associate head coach at Louisville - these two programs excite me greatly. Both the Cardinals and Gators are known for extreme pressure defense, particularly on the perimeter, and outstanding guard play. I like all of those words. It looks like he tried to do the same thing last year at FIU with mixed success. The Panthers were fifth in the entire country in forcing turnovers and eleventh in creating steals while defending the three point line well but they got shredded on 2-pointers. They were also a big-time uptempo team (48th fastest) but turned it over too much themselves to be remotely efficient (272nd in turnovers). It's also worth noting that although he turned the team around compared to the prior season record-wise, he also had five starters departing and nine new players, so it's not like he was taking over a preexisting squad - he created that semi-succesful FIU team.
Recruiting-wise, who knows? Louisville and Florida perennially had great classes, but they both kind of sell themselves and I'm guessing neither the elder Pitino nor Billy Donovan need a whole lot of help selling their programs. I tried to track down some info on how involved but it's tough. I found a few references about him "helping Louisville build back-to-back top 15 classes" and he was able to bring in 8 new recruits very quickly after being hired at FIU, but running your own program and doing it at this level is a whole new experience so who knows.
For now? I'm on board. I love Rick Pitino and I love Billy Donovan and both have had Richard as a key part of their staff and both Louisville and Florida play a style I'd like to see the Gophers adopt and it looks like Pitino tried to install that at FIU last year (and mostly succeeded, given what he had to work with). Pitino is one of the few hires left who can give you the combination of a "name" as well as being a young, up and coming coach.
I trust Teague, and I love Pitino. What could possibly go wrong?
BEST OF MAXIM
MINNEAPOLIS The University of Minnesota pulled out all the stops to welcome the school's new men's basketball coach. The pep band, cheerleaders, fans and even Goldy Gopher all showed up as Richard Pitino was introduced at Williams Arena.It was a big moment for the Minnesota program, but an even bigger moment for the 30-year-old Pitino."I'm extremely excited about...
Wichita State hasn't surprised Louisville coach Rick Pitino.
The Shockers (30-8) face the top-seeded Cardinals (33-5) in the Final Four on Saturday night in Atlanta, just the fifth time a team seeded ninth or greater has reached the national semifinals since seeding began in 1979.
Pitino, though, said he was talking to his son at the onset of the tournament about teams that...
Minnesota is in advanced discussions with Richard Pitino, the son of Louisville coach Rick Pitino, to take over for Tubby Smith.
Two people with knowledge of the discussions say Pitino engaged in negotiations with Minnesota officials on Wednesday. The people requested anonymity because the deal has not been formally completed.
In his lone season at Florida International, Pitino led...
Minnesota has picked Richard Pitino, the son of Louisville coach Rick Pitino, to take over for Tubby Smith.
A person with knowledge of the discussions says Pitino reached a verbal agreement with Minnesota on Wednesday. The person requested anonymity because the deal has not been officially announced.
In his lone season at Florida International, Pitino led the Panthers to an 18...
Louisville coach Rick Pitino says his son Richard is ''more than ready'' to take over as head coach at Minnesota.
Pitino spoke to reporters in Atlanta on Thursday as his Cardinals prepare to face Wichita State in the Final Four this weekend. Richard Pitino agreed to a deal to coach the Golden Gophers on Wednesday.
The 30-year-old Richard Pitino has just one year...
30-year old Richard Pitino, son of Louisville coach Rick Pitino, is moving on up in the coaching ranks.
According to a report by Jeff Goodman of CBSSports.com, the younger Pitino is expected to be named head coach at the University of Minnesota, replacing the fired Tubby Smith.
Pitino just finished his...
Monday April, 8, 2013 could be a great day for Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino. Not only could he be playing for his second national championship, but on Monday he’ll also find out if he’s been voted into the Naismith Basketball Hall-of-Fame.
Pitino was on the ballot for the Hall of Fame last year, but was surprisingly snubbed. It’s hard to imagine him getting left...
MINNEAPOLIS As the coaching search dragged on, past the one-week mark, Gophers basketball fans started to get restless. They had hoped it wouldn't take this long to find the replacement for Tubby Smith, who wore out his welcome in Minnesota and eventually was fired last Monday.
During that time, several potential candidates were brought up. That included Virginia Commonwealth...
Rick Pitino has been a part of something special with the Louisville Cardinals in 2013, and his impressive resume will carry him to the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Pitino, who is one of the winningest active coaches in college basketball, has more exciting news than just winning the Big East conference championship, a Final Four Bid, with a potential national championship in the cards...
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) The entire basketball program at Wichita State runs on what Louisville coach Rick Pitino makes in a single year, with money left over to purchase plenty of trophy cases for Final Four hardware.
In an NCAA tournament driven by longshots and upsets, the Shockers are in many ways the oddball of the season's final weekend: They don't have a big-time football...
University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino has said several times this season that he’s not afraid to use any player on his bench. With the injury to Kevin Ware, Pitino will likely have to turn to walk-on Tim Henderson. Cardinal Authority has a quick update on Henderson and his abilities.
Louisville coach Rick Pitino isn't the only Final Four coach who got a break from Syracuse's Jim Boeheim. Michigan coach John Beilein impressed the Hall of Fame coach of the Orange a long time ago and that led to some impressive recommendations.
Tom Penders, retired longtime college basketball coach, talks with Matt this week about the NCAA Tournament. They also discuss the offensive issues plaguing the game, UCLA's new coaching hire and the future for Arizona basketball.
Among his observations:
On the favorite to win the NCAA Tournament: "Louisville is the best team, and Rick Pitino knows how to use that depth...