Jeff Bzdelik: “I’m Not Going to Make Excuses,” But…

Posted by mpatton on November 28th, 2012

Wake Forest was embarrassed last night, losing by 16 to Nebraska in Winston-Salem — the same Nebraska that just eked out a home win over Tulane before getting blown out by Kent State (also at home). The game was close at the half with the Demon Deacons only trailing by four, but Nebraska came out blazing in the second half and scored on 19 of its first 23 possessions over a span of 15 minutes. In case you prefer advanced stats, Nebraska scored 40 points on those 23 possessions. That’s 1.74 points per possession, for those of you wondering.

Nebraska Manhandled Wake Forest at the Joel Last Night. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

When asked about the game, Jeff Bzdelik offered the Winston-Salem Journal‘s Dan Collins this jewel:

“I’ve tried everything. I’m not going to make any excuses. Tuesday is their toughest day academically. It starts at sun-up. I was aware of that, and I was trying to give them rest. I tried a different approach today, just giving them some rest. I don’t know.”

For those of you keeping score at home, Bzdelik’s team was embarrassed at home by a Big Ten basketball doormat because the players had a hard class day. It’s really hard to believe that Wake Forest was considered a national contender a few years ago. But Bzdelik isn’t making excuses. Well, other than blaming an abysmal home loss on academics and “rest.”I’ve been a proponent of giving Bzdelik a fair shake. He came into a really tough situation where the team was going to get a lot worse before it got any better. But this is year three and there’s virtually no improvement from last year. The team’s veterans have regressed and the Deacs’ hyped recruiting class has struggled in the early going. This stagnation has to fall on his shoulders. No one expected the Demon Deacons to be ACC contenders, but they also didn’t expect 26-point beatings from Iona or 16-point home losses to Nebraska.

It’s time for Bzdelik and athletic director Ron Wellman to stop making excuses.

mpatton (576 Posts)

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4 responses to “Jeff Bzdelik: “I’m Not Going to Make Excuses,” But…”

  1. WakeFan says:

    The one accurate, reasonable, correct part of that quote: “I don’t know.”

  2. If Bzdelik goes–and he should–so should Ron Wellman. Firing Dino Gaudio was a head-scratcher. To replace a promising young coach with a coach of proven mediocrity was unbelievable…. that the latter coach happened to be the AD’s BFF makes the situation more comprehensible–and more outrageous.

  3. mpatton says:

    Yeah the friend thing is really troubling. I sort of understood the reasoning behind firing Gaudio, though the timing was really poor. But agree Wellman is probably on the chopping block too…

  4. rtmsf says:

    There’s a reason that Gaudio hasn’t gotten a job since his firing — he lost control of his last two teams at Wake and those in the “know” recognize that he was way in over his head there. The nice records and the brief #1 ranking do not reflect that his teams filled with NBA Draft picks quit on him in Feb/Mar both of those years. He was a panic hire after Prosser passed away, and he coached like one.

    As for Bzdelik, whose hire is just plain old incompetence and GOBness, he might be the worst basketball coach in ACC history after two-plus seasons. Someone should fact-check me on that one, but when Iona is building 30-pt halftime leads and Nebraska of all schools is dominating you in your bldg, there are serious, serious problems.

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