Some big rumors came about yesterday from ESPN's Doug Gottlieb that involve Georgia Tech firing Paul Hewitt and hiring Tubby Smith away from Minnesota. Sadly, the Worldwide Leader puts up an "Insider Wall" and we refuse to pay to see the original material. However various other sites have mentioned it such as here, and here.
"The hottest chatter in coaching news is the speculation that Tubby Smith will be on the move this offseason. Three different head coaches told me the coaching fraternity is abuzz over whether Georgia Tech will buy out Paul Hewitt (reportedly in excess of $5 million dollars) and land Smith."\
In our most recent installment of Good Cop/Bad Cop, we discuss whether a Tubby Smith hiring is a good idea or not.
Bird: I'll be bad cop because I was the last to jump off the Paul Hewitt bandwagon.
1) He's flaming out. Since the 2005-2006 season, Tubby's overall winning percentage has decreased. He hasn't made it past the second round in the tournament in 7 seasons.
2) Tubby's 59 as well. He's only a few years away from 65. Obviously, no matter his performance, he would not be a permanent fixture or a longterm hire. Do you relaly want to rebuild old? Do you want to replace an inefficient motor with an old expensive, reliable one or get a cheaper, newer model (made in Japan)?
3) Tubby ain't the greatest recruiter. At the biggest draw in college basketball (Kentucky), Tubby Smith only tallied four NBA draft picks during Paul Hewitt's tenure. This includes only one first rounder as opposed to Hewitt's four. Recruiting NBA calibre talent isn't just important for recruiting and street cred, it's big for the university to have "Georgia Tech" next to an NBA All-Star's name during the playoffs or All-Star events. This is particularly an issue considering Hewitt, a reknowned recruiter, is dropping the ball against newcomer Mark Fox.
4) Tubby coached at Georgie. No matter what you say/think/believe, it's hard to swallow the pill of hiring a rival team's retread. Would Tubby have the same passion as Tech fans for defeating his former stepping stone?
Winfield's response after The Jump.
Winfield: I'll play the Good Cop because I am desperate for change.
1) Because there is absolutely no reason to keep Paul Hewitt any longer. If we can move on, short term or long term, we must do so.
2) Name recognition. No matter where he goes, people will recognize the name Tubby Smith. This will bring the fans back to basketball.
3) Tubby Smith is a winner. In his 18 seasons of coaching, he has reached the 20-win mark in 16 of them. He averaged 27 wins at Kentucky. When many people think of Tubby Smith, they think of him winning a national championship at Kentucky. What many don't realize is that Tubby rebuilt the University of Tulsa's program (4 years, 79-43 records, back-to-back Sweet 16 Appearances). He won at georgie, taking the bulldogs to their first back-to-back 20 win seasons in school history, AND he has revitalized the University of Minnesota. Smith took a Golden Gophers team that went 8-22 and molded them into a 20-14 squad in a year. In summary, Tubby Smith can turn a mediocre team into a winning team in a minimal amount of time using the old coach's players.
4) Georgia Tech needs to look at a short term revitilization. With Coach Smith being 60 years old next year, the opportunity should not present itself for Georgia Tech to get caught in a long term binding contract. He will certainly be the tool that helps the program emerge out of its mediocre state, push into a new era and guide the team into the beginning of success.
5) Tubby Smith knows how to beat a rival. Tubby Smith held a winning records against Louisville (6-4) and against Georgia Tech (2-0). We have lost that ability to beat the in-state team.
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