Bruce Pearl hired as basketball coach

Neat, right?

 

ALSO. Jcmac set up a ESPN bracket group for those of you afflicted with the March Madness.

http://games.espn.go.com/tournament-challenge-bracket/2014/en/group?groupID=407182

pass: weagle

55 Responses to “Bruce Pearl hired as basketball coach”

  1. Music City Tiger Says:

    Never was a big fan of basketball, and Auburn’s form did not help generate enthusiasm either, except at the very beginning of the season or when a coach change happened.
    Hope that this years coaching change changes that but we all are spoiled now after Gus’ debut season.

  2. Jason Says:

    He’s got a good history as a coach but his NCAA problems are a bit scary. He won’t even be able to recruit until late August since he’s still prohibited from doing so by the NCAA. Hopefully having sat out a few years has impressed upon him the need to stay within the rules.

    If he runs a clean program, he has the potential to turn around a basketball program that is well overdue for success. There’s no reason why Auburn can’t have a good basketball team. He won’t be able to do much in the way of recruiting this year but going forward things should improve greatly.

    I was a ‘Cliff Dweller’ during the Chris Porter years and the year before. The fans are willing to support the team if the university and athletic department are. Plus I haven’t had a chance to get down to Auburn to see a game in the new arena. This will give me a good excuse to do so!

  3. Walt Says:

    Jason, his NCAA “problem” was a bit of a joke. He had a cookout during a football game and invited some high school kids. A secondary violation at best. Then when the NCAA came calling unexpectedly on it they panicked under first questioning and denied it ever happened. That’s where the problems were: the coverup afterwards. One of the lead investigators for the case is now on Auburn’s compliance staff and signed off on it. I think he’s been effectively humbled after three years out of the game and ready to get back at it. It’s an exciting hire and should help turn around Auburn basketball in a big way.

  4. Spencer Lee Says:

    Biggest slam dunk hire in the history of basketball in the state of AL. Bigger than UAB getting Gene Bartow from UCLA, bigger than UA getting C.M. Newton, bigger than AU getting a proven winner in Cliff Ellis from Clemson back in the 90′s. Bruce Pearl turned around a moribund TN program instantly. He took a UT team that lost 17 games the year before he got there and went 22-8 and a # 2 seed in the NCAA’s his first year on the job. Will he be able to do that here – now? That’s unlikely. The talent isn’t where it needs to be, but he has been a consistent winner (no losing seasons in 20 years of coaching) which means he can take what he has and get the most out of it. The AU Athletic Department is stating AU Men’s hoops is a major priority – and I’m delighted.

    One of my best AU friends knew him when he was @ UT and he has a special place in his heart for special needs kids – so that makes it double AUsome for me personally. :)

  5. JCMac Says:

    What is this Basket-ball you speak of?

  6. mark Says:

    Not sure, but I just now added your bracket challenge group to the post.

  7. Spencer Lee Says:

    C’mon JCMac, you’ve got some real world AU hoops cred. You actually ATTENDED an AU game with me at Beard-Eaves…sadly in a loss to what we used to call a “mid-major.” I can’t recall exactly who – but we stunk it up. I think it was a team from Louisiana…help me out.

  8. Tdog Says:

    You know…I never attended a BBall game while at AU…I think I attempted, but got distracted by Mug Night at Fink’s…..

  9. Spencer Lee Says:

    I don’t remember missing any b’ball games at AU when I was a student…and we flat out stunk to be perfectly honest. I love b’ball in general and AU dearly – so my attendance was a given.

  10. JCMac Says:

    I don’t remember the team we lost to in a terrible fashion. Whoever it was, it put us on this path…. so I must be thankful for that…

    On a side note Memphis (my employer) is in the tournament. So I will support them until I picked them to lose..

  11. Spencer Lee Says:

    JCMac, my curiosity would not be quenched until I dug up the opponent we both saw @ Beard-Eaves – 12/20/09 – Sam Houston State.

    SHS – 107
    AU – 89

  12. Thomas (formerly the Huntsville one, now the Charleston, West Virginia one) Says:

    I’m in… and I still hate to see a departure this way, but we need a passionate winner. I think we have one now.

    Mark, will call you early next week.

    Guys, I will be in Auburn early next week… likely a Tuesday. Is that good for y’all?

  13. Spencer Lee Says:

    My Tuesdays are helter skelter. That AM I’ll be working in Mgy and that night I’ll be @ a Bible study in Opelika. I’m sort of free from 3:00 to 5:30 but will have my 2 kids with me. They range from “highly entertaining” to “too busy playing to come say hello to one of dad’s friends.” :) We typically kill some time @ the Burger King on South College during part of that time frame. You in just for the day?

  14. Walt Says:

    My Tuesdays are my busiest days teaching wise, however I’m done by 2:15 and typically leave the office by 3-3:30 (I get there around 6:45, so I’m still getting a full day in for anyone curious; especially since I eat lunch at my desk, lol).

  15. Spencer Lee Says:

    In case anyone’s curious my bracket jumped straight into the toilet and never came up for air. Worst I have ever picked.

  16. Thomas (formerly the Huntsville one, now the Charleston, West Virginia one) Says:

    Sorry, for the delay… internet went down.

    Yeah, just for the day… I have to be in B’ham to take care of a couple of things, so I figured that is the best day.

    I’m sorry to put folks in a bind… I know work and family come first… I was just going to go up to B’ham early in the day and then swing down to Auburn via 280 on the way back to Mobile.

    So, Walt and Spence any other ideas or suggestions on how we could do this. I will bend as much as I can to accommodate.

    Mark, I will be heading back home via H’ville on Friday if you can swing that.

  17. Spencer Lee Says:

    Thomas shoot an e-mail to Mark – he can give you my cell. You can call me when you’re in town and I can see if I can get up with you. Just know there’s a 95% chance me getting up with you might consist of you coming to Chik-Fil-A or something like that to meet up with me and the kiddies. :) Regardless, safe travels bro.

  18. Spencer Lee Says:

    Be advised…if anyone else in the Auburner Family happens to be rolling by South College today @ 3:30 feel free to join the reunion “Thomas formerly of…,” “Walt” and I will convene @ my kids’ favorite dining establishment – Burger King. War Eagle everyone! :)

  19. Spencer Lee Says:

    Walt and Thomas – enjoyed visiting with you fellas on Tuesday. Sorry I had to cut it a little short. That’s the life I live…not much I can do about that. :)

  20. Big Swoll Says:

    Unionized @ NWern? I have no prob with professional athletes having a union representing their best interests but the NCAA was supposed to be an advocate as well as governing body. If it’s dissolved or restructured at the public’s request that shouldn’t mean college football becomes the NFL’s farm league. Its still about community and tradition to me but even for those disagree…. if players are paid it becomes professional, not amateur. By both definition and trade.

    How long would these institutions that currently serve and provide towards the greater good of the American taxpaying citizens remain as such? How long would it take for them to be compromised at the public’s expense? Seems like a slippery slope to me. I could see allowing student athletes to have vetted and supervised jobs like many other scholarship recipients are expected to. But making them paid athletes will dilute the scholastic and community responsibilities and sets a dangerous precedent imo. These are supposed to be institutions building better individuals and societies not corporations serving some privileged elites.

  21. Spencer Lee Says:

    Big Swoll, here is a repost of what I shared moments ago on FB:

    (Unionization of college athletics is) Ludicrous…labor unions are designed to (in theory) fight for less work and more pay / better benefits for the union members. Baring actual pay for players, there is no more financial incentives they can get other than tuition, books, fees, room/board and free stuff from the Athletic Dept. As for “less work” part, the NCAA took care of that years ago by setting maximum amounts of days and time the student athletes could do various things related to their sport. As for “better conditions” apart from banning things like profanity laced tirades from coaches, “hard practices,” hazing Freshmen, and start times for practices before a certain hour – what else can they get? My brother was a full scholarship athlete all four years in college so I get some of the things that work against them, but unions will do to college football the same thing they have done to everything else they’ve touched – more costs, worse product, fostering more grievance minded individuals which equates to more lawsuits, etc… And what about the non-revenue sport athletes? If only football and basketball players get paid, why not them? And if you do pay them, where does that leave the small schools with the small athletic dept budgets? Further in the red or dropping some sports. Whole lot of unintended consequences are in play here.

  22. Big Swoll Says:

    Good Stuff Spencer Lee…… I don’t have a problem with unions in a professional capacity, provided they function as they are supposed to and those that decline membership are treated just as fair. But when I think of what is being proposed by ESPN and the power conferences & etc. I picture a bunch of Lionel Hutz AAL knock-off’s handing out secret sponge business cards (just add water!) and that doest seem good for the game, players or community imo.

  23. Big Swoll Says:

    Btw, what has been the response to your fb post? People feeling it or is there much support for the pay-for-play schemes being floated around?

  24. Spencer Lee Says:

    It was 75/25 in opposition to the ramification of unionization Big Swoll. About what I expected. I could have gone on with more points but I felt like I said enough.

  25. Walt Says:

    I have decided today that I can actually tolerate Furman.

  26. Spencer Lee Says:

    Wow…..Walt, you had me for about 5 seconds on that last post. I was thinking – dang…..did Furman hire some close friend or family member of Walt’s? Then I checked the date…>almost< got me Walt! hahaha

    On a completely separate matter, I played basketball Monday night with Bobby Freeman's son and grandson. Freeman was the "throwing" quarterback for Shug Jordan opposite Vince Dooley's "run" package. AU had a dual threat at QB back then…..just one threat was on the field at a time. hehee

  27. Thomas (formerly the Huntsville one, now the Charleston, West Virginia one) Says:

    Wow… I somehow won the group.

    But, I guess we all failed to pick a match-up between Uconn and UK.

    Well, it was fun guys. Can’t wait for the next Auburner pick group.

    This is a bit late, but I had a great time Walt and Spence.

    Mark as always the visit to H’ville was a blast. Next time I’m in the neighborhood, we will have to do a follow-up on our observations about Auburn athletics.

  28. Spencer Lee Says:

    Thomas – great to see you on the Plains again bro! Congrats on the Pick Em. I’ve had much better years in the past with March Madness Pick Ems. I dig it so much a derivative of March Madness is the password to get onto my work laptop. :)

  29. Music City Tiger Says:

    I feel weird – Auburn Spring football is on going and there is no QB battle!

  30. Walt Says:

    Yeah, it’s been a quiet spring. Word is leaking out that Peyton Barber is better than advertised at RB and Duke Williams is tearing it up at WR.

  31. Music City Tiger Says:

    Also heard a lot of shuffling around on the lines, both offensive and defensive to build depth (on DL) and versatility (on OL).

    We also came in at #4 in preseason ranking by Phil Steele. Should be a fun year ahead of us once again!

  32. Spencer Lee Says:

    I can confirm the reports on Duke Williams – stud from the word go. Also confirming reports on line shifts up and down to add versatility if someone gets hurt and to test the combinations to see which groups work best. What it is NOT is a move of desperation from not having enough quality linemen – quite the opposite.

    As for the shuffling on the DL (and End) some of that IS due to a number of guys being held out for medical reasons thus experimentation is going on with guys playing in different spots…including an all DT front with Montravious Adams at end. THAT would be interesting to see in a game….300 pound edge rusher! Awesome! :)

    I haven’t read up enough on the Peyton Barber part. The last report I read was he was in the mix with CAP and Grant. Wouldn’t surprise me though…he was very highly thought of.

  33. Spencer Lee Says:

    http://i2.cdn.turner.com/si/dam/assets/140415102615-jerick-mckinnon-single-image-cut.jpg

    Just for Walt…..and anyone else on the GSU bandwagon :)

  34. Spencer Lee Says:

    http://nextimpulsesports.com/2014/04/15/uc-irvines-7-foot-6-mamadou-ndiaye-threw-first-pitch-proceeded-to-drawf-anteaters/

    I never got a confirm either way but I’m thinking this is the son of former AU Men’s hoop great (and what I believe was the best Center in AU Men’s hoops history) – Mamadou Ndiaye. Cool video and commentary.

  35. Tdog Says:

    Have a super day to anyone going to ADay today. I have an Easter carnival/egg hunt today at 2, so I’m DVRing the game. WDE!

  36. Walt Says:

    Hey… Hey you guys… I don’t know what our D is going to do this year, but our offense is SCARY. I know it was just an A-Day game, but Marshall looked 10x better than he even looked at the end of last year throwing the football. And our WRs are the best group I’ve ever seen Auburn have.

  37. JC in FLA Says:

    Offense was mucho ! I think the D will be fine….just need better DB and LB play and Ellis has some new tools for that…it was great to see UA struggle on offense too…of course ESPN covered that up and was saying Coker will solve the QB problems…typical Kiss Butts by them !

  38. Walt Says:

    JC, our spring game last year could have had the same thing said about it in terms of a QB making a difference. I don’t think anything can really make Lane Kiffin better, though.

  39. hillrya Says:

    Found this on Al.com, but it was semi-hidden. Wanted to make sure at least a few other people saw it:

    http://www.sportsonearth.com/article/72185812/auburn-tigers-gus-malzahn-have-become-a-college-football-innovator

    Not that we didn’t know all these things in the article already, but still fun to see other people realizing what is being built here at Auburn right now.

  40. Spencer Lee Says:

    Saw the Controlled Chaos article earlier – good stuff!

    As for A Day, keep in mind it was our 1st team going against our 2nd on both offense and defense. The offense should be excellent but not quite as dominant as what we saw Saturday. We will have the best one two punch at WR that we’ve had since…..well, maybe ever. I racked my brain on great combos before – Frank Sanders / Thomas Bailey was the best I could do. Terry Beasley could take it to the house on any play (same as Duke Williams) but Dick Smaltz wouldn’t be Sammy Coats equivalent. Ben Obamanu / Devin Aromoshadu get honorable mention.

    Ought to be a fun year! :)

    WDE

  41. Tdog Says:

    What I learned from watching A-Day:

    1. Marshall has matured A LOT. From stance to throwing, he’s going to be something to watch.

    2. CAP is going to be like B. Tate aka running over everything on his way to the endzone.

    3. It’s great to see a big fun TE back in who can get open and might be able to do the Lutzy.

    4. WHY IS IT NOT AUGUST YET?!?!?!?!?!?!

  42. Spencer Lee Says:

    Mini Auburner reunion tomorrow in H’ville……..OK so it’s just me, Mark and a soon to be Auburner convert having lunch. Still counts in my book. :)

  43. Music City Tiger Says:

    ‘There are a lot of War Eagles watching this laughing real hard right now’:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=kJtShAMwKec

  44. Spencer Lee Says:

    THAT. WAS. SO. FLIPPIN. FUNNY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  45. Spencer Lee Says:

    Mark, Josh and I enjoyed lunch…always good to catch up! WDE and best wishes through July! :)

  46. Spencer Lee Says:

    Mark, I think it would be entirely appropriate (assuming you’ve got the time) to put a post up for David Langner. He, of course, was the AU DB that returned both punts for TDs in the 4th QTR to beat uat in 1972. He passed away Sat morning from cancer.

  47. Music City Tiger Says:

    I like the new SEC rule that each team must play one team from the other power conferences.
    Also Georgia rivalry continues.

  48. Tdog Says:

    I’m glad the UGA-lry will continue. Some of the best plays and hits of college football have been played in the series. Plus, I can handle UGA fans so it’s good to have a team with decent fans.

  49. Spencer Lee Says:

    Tdog, don’t try to convince Lisa UGA fans are nice….she is in and among some snarly dawgs. I guess it comes down to who you have to live around and work with. Thus uat tops out the list for me now, but in college I seemed inundated with UF fans – some decent, some ridiculous (and that’s all pre-Spurrier).

  50. Walt Says:

    I am not a fan of UGA fans, either. Having grown up amongst them, they are largely Bama fans without any reason for the sense of entitlement they portray.

  51. Spencer Lee Says:

    Got this from our IT guy @ the office…

    Bama likes to claim to be AU’s “big brother”, but they’re really more like the drunk uncle no one wants to sit next to at Thanksgiving dinner. If you get stuck near him, you’ll be bored to tears with tall tales of how great he used to be and insist that you come over to his house and admire his old bowling trophies.

  52. Ft Worth John Says:

    I’m not sure there has ever been a better period for Auburn. Everything Auburn is very positive right now. Academics, Alumni success, every sport seems to be trending upward and getting better, and the most publicly visible section – the football team is riding very high. 118 days until kickoff and 5dimes offshore casino has AU a 21.5 point favorite over the piglets. War Eagle!

  53. Spencer Lee Says:

    Gus spoke to the Mgy AU Club the other night with a buddy of mine in attendance. He said Gus relayed several thoughts about the season and some players specifically. Per Malzhan: Jeremy Johnson will play on Sundays one day. Don’t read the fact he’s not starting for us as the staff not having confidence in him – just that Nick Marshall can run this particular offense better right now. Also said Trovon Reed was excelling at DB and probably should have been there the whole time. On the replacement of Greg Robinson he said you can’t fully replace a player of that caliber but keep in mind before he came down with leukemia Shon Coleman was one of the best O Linemen in the country and while he has spent a couple of years away from the game he’s gained 2 years of maturity and added muscle mass over the last year or so. On Tre Mason’s replacement(s) Corey Grant has gotten stronger and is capable of running anywhere now – not just wide. CAP is what we’ve seen already – a big guy with nimble feet and good balance. Payton Barber will get some carries and Roc Thomas was someone we were going to be impressed with.

    So from these comments it seems he’s tipping his hand on what he wants to do when August rolls around.

    Regardless, it ought to be fun. WDE!

  54. Spencer Lee Says:

    http://tracking.si.com/2014/05/07/bills-marcell-dareus-arrested-felony-drug-charges/?eref=sihp

    Looks like somebody will be getting more drug tests from the NFL this year…

  55. Music City Tiger Says:

    Robinson (expected) and Ford (surprise) taken in the first round!