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Where to now?

Who would you like to see as the 29th head coach of the Princeton Tigers?

Similar (but not the same) question:

Who do you think will be the next coach and why?

What are your expectations for the program going forward?

Where to now?

Oh, and if you wish to apply for this position the job listing can be found here.

R.W. Enoch, Jr. said,

April 5, 2011 @ 10:02 pm

As for the first, I'd like to see Princeton take a slightly different tack this time around. Stability is pretty important if you want to consistently win conference championships, and the last 15 years have not been cutting it. Most alumni and fans will disagree with me, but I'd like to see a candidate chosen that is at a point in his (or her!) life where they already some have financial security and perhaps realize they are not destined for the "big time" of college basketball. Bill Carmody, Craig Robinson, Armond Hill, and even Tony Newsom come to mind (probably in that order). They will appreciate what Princeton has to offer and will be less likely to bolt if other offers come knocking.

Another option in the same direction would be to take someone 32yo or younger and sign them to a 7, 8, or 10 year contract. It's riskier (in the event that it goes the way of Scott/Miller), but provides more stability for the department.

As for the second, Michael Brennan. This is an impossible question to really answer for an outsider — just my best guess.

A 2012 Princeton championship was already unlikely, so 6 of one & a half-dozen of the other for the next year or two. Princeton certainly needs to be back in strong contention for the title by the 2013-2014 academic year. If we're finishing lower than second with more then a few losses, it might be time to rethink Jr.

Steven Postrel said,

April 5, 2011 @ 10:25 pm

A big no on Armond Hill for me.

My first choice would be Sydney Johnson, but I hear he's too rich for our blood.

I don't know enough about Earl, Henderson, or Brennan to distinguish among them. For continuity's sake, I'd prefer Earl of those three, but if one of the others is clearly better for some reason I can't observe, that would be fine.

Craig Robinson is an intriguing thought, but it ain't gonna happen. The Tony Newsom idea is also intriguing and possibly doable, but I am not confident that we would be buying any extra stability with him if we're not willing to match on salary after a coach proves his success.

Maybe we should try to lure Pat Summitt from Tennessee. She's getting along in years and might be up for a new challenge. I bet the players would be embarrassed to complain about her yelling at them, so her Knight/Carrill glass-eating style might work. And we'd get tons of great free publicity for the program.

Stuart Schulman said,

April 5, 2011 @ 11:20 pm

can't discount Newsom...the top assistant with the program, knows the personnel etc.

Armond Hill: ask any Columbia basketball fan and you'll get your answer.

If we couldn't pay to keep Sydney, then Carmody and Robinson are off the table.

I think it comes down to Newsom, Brennan and Henderson, not sure in what order. If Sydney poaches Newsom then Earl is in the hunt. All of this is based on past hiring practices and I could be way off mark.

Howie? Maybe.

I am hoping Gary Walters will not be returning calls from Bobby Gonzalez...

Rodney Johnson said,

April 6, 2011 @ 1:49 am

John Rogers comes to mind with the criterion of financial stability and likely to stay (this is said in jest).

Howard Levy is someone who has a wealth of on-site experience, and also would seem to be unlikely to leave after a few years of success. Could also help recruit big men, although we have had not shortage of them lately.

Earl is of course young and lacks experience away from Princeton. The continuity factor might work against long term stability, as early success might lead to early departure.

Just based on resume, I would favor Brennan over Henderson, because he has been an assistant at several programs and could draw from all of them. Henderson has been under Carmody for so long, that I have a little fear of a Joe Scott redux situation, based on what I have gleaned about the Carmody style.

Mike Maker (I think I have the name correct) from Williams has also been mentioned, but I know little about him.

George Clark said,

April 6, 2011 @ 6:48 am

Fun to speculate but not a useful exercise. I wish I knew what SJ's resignation means to the people in charge of the "legacy." Until we know for sure I will assume that SJ was motivated by a desire to win basketball games AND to achieve financial security for his children. For him to conclude, I must infer, that such goals are incompatible with the Princeton coaching position suggests an administration with somewhat different institutional goals. Our goal each year as fans is to win the Ivy title. For the last 50 years every coach but one has accomplished this goal. Assuming normal development by Connolly and some help from the incoming recruits, we will be a factor in next season's race. We had very few, if any, breathers this year. Can we assume that other programs will continue to improve? Why not...? It is disappointing that Ivy coaches consider the jobs to be steppingstones, but that's what we have seen from the most successful ones at least in the last 15 years. The Pete Carril's are "once in a lifetime" guys.

Jack said,

April 6, 2011 @ 9:42 am

Famous last words----After Davis’ shot sent the Tigers to the NCAA Tournament, Johnson told ESPN’s Jeremy Schaap on camera, “I love, love, love Princeton basketball.”

Jack said,

April 6, 2011 @ 11:25 am

Listening to the news conference, Sydney sounds very excited to leave Princeton and work for an AD and University that supports him. He's now finally part of something "special". Now he has his dream and "loves Fairfield basketball".

William I Bacchus said,

April 6, 2011 @ 12:23 pm

While we are all fantasizing, why not shoot the moon? I hear Larry Brown wants to coach again, and he certainly has the financial security to accept a Princeton level salary!

Jon Solomon said,

April 6, 2011 @ 12:25 pm

You know Brown interviewed for the Princeton job in 2006, right?

Gregg Lange said,

April 6, 2011 @ 1:27 pm

Comedy is not pretty.
-- Steve Martin

Maureen Montgomery said,

April 6, 2011 @ 1:28 pm

Brian Earl. I like the vitality and the creativity of the younger guys. To me , it's more important that the Princeton admin drop it's holier-than-thou attitude and be more supportive of the sport that puts Princeton "on the map." What's wrong with accepting the occasional transfer if that person meets the academic criteria? Sports are important to colleges and their surrounding communities because they bring people together who may not understand anything else about each other but they all love the team.

Gregg Lange said,

April 6, 2011 @ 1:35 pm

So in addition to meticulously reviewing 27,000 freshman applications per year, you want admissions to get into the business of going through thousands of transfer applications for maybe a dozen spots?

Or do you prefer reducing the proportion of freshman admits below the current 8.5 percent?

Or you want Princeton to treat athlete transfers differently? (Hint: that's a PR disaster waiting to happen)

Or what?

Maureen Montgomery said,

April 6, 2011 @ 1:40 pm

Am I missing something? I thought all the other Ivies accepted transfer students. If they can do it, why not Princeton?

TigerHeel said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:17 pm

The University needs to act fast and make a splash with the hiring to demonstrate to the alumni and Princeton Basketball faithful that the administration supports the program. Larry Brown would do just that, although I recognize that there is baggage with that hiring and that it could backfire.

Jon Solomon said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:25 pm

Since 1972, the longest Brown has been at a job is six years.

Not a 40 year track record of stability.

William I Bacchus said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:28 pm

Didn't realize Brown had interviewed in 2006. Was it pro forma, or just a gesture? Maybe my fantasy wasn't as far-fetched as I thought when I made it, tongue-in-cheek!

William I Bacchus said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:29 pm

6 years is better than 3 or 4!

Jon Solomon said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:31 pm

Only 10 people interviewed for the Princeton job in 2006, so I think it was more than just a gesture.


Ps. Brown has had eight stints of three seasons or less in the last 40 years.

Rodney Johnson said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:31 pm

I remain heartbroken over this, but can't help but wonder...

von Arx at Fairfield is Princeton '69, so are we in danger of losing our next coach to Moravian, if Jim Walker leaves?

Jack said,

April 6, 2011 @ 2:58 pm

Don't you know Princeton is so special we can do whatever we want. We are so above everyone else that people should be so honored that we would consider letting them in or working for us. Transfers? Obviously not worthy.

TigerHeel said,

April 6, 2011 @ 3:22 pm

I would take Coach Brown (if only for three to four years) because of the immediate attention and interest it would bring to Princeton Basketball. Also, I like the idea of Coach Brown going head-to-head against Tommy Amaker.

I would be shocked if Brown is even considered and expect/hope for either Brennan, Earl or Henderson. Don't be surprised if whomever is hired among that group leaves only after a few years, too. Princeton seems to have become a launching pad for coaching careers. That's not necessarily a bad thing as long as we continue to have capable young assistants in the waiting.

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