Relax, UConn Fans: Mr. Crankypants Will ReturnPosted by rtmsf on April 9th, 2009
Fresh off his (and UConn’s) first loss in Final Four history (previous: 4-0 with two titles), Jim Calhoun today ended any further speculation as to his job status and stated unequivocally that he will be back for the 2009-10 season. Given his advancing age and some recent (the Ken Krayeske salary flap) and pending (Nate Miles) embarrassments for the program, it would have made sense if Calhoun had decided to take his golden parachute and say to hell with the rest of it. Instead, Calhoun will stick around at least one more year to chide, deride and lambaste rogue reporters who dare ask a question he doesn’t like (call it the Gillispie Method, but more crotchety). From the AP report:
“It is my full intention to return for the 2009-10 season,” Calhoun said. “I look forward to coaching next season and to continuing as the head coach at Connecticut into the future. In many ways, the journey of this past season has made me realize how much I love coaching this game, how much I love my kids and how much I enjoy being at Connecticut.”
Not sure what to make of this decision. The guy is a great coach, unquestionably, and we’re sure that he loves the process and routine of the act of coaching up young, talented kids to play the game of basketball. But his team stands to lose quite a bit this season (Thabeet, Price, Adrien, Austrie) and although UConn won’t be completely rebuilding, it’s not a strong bet that the Huskies will be back competing for a F4 next year.
Furthermore, and despite some UConn fans’ admonitions to the contrary, this Nate Miles thing is going to be investigated, whether he was a junior or senior or whatever, and regardless of the length and timing of some of these phone calls and text messages. There’ll also be inquiries into possible contact with other players, including uber-frosh Ater Majok. Our point is this – it’s not necessarily that probation is looming or even that UConn necessarily did anything wrong here – but you can rest assured that having the NCAA poking around your program is never a fun endeavor and it ultimately causes nothing but an incredible amount of timesuck and headaches for those in charge (i.e., Calhoun).
So why would Calhoun want to subject himself to that next year? All we can think is that he really likes coaching (and his $1.6M salary).