Thursday, March 22, 2007

Alford agrees to ruin New Mexico basketball

After eight lo-o-o-o-ng season as the University of Iowa's head men's basketball coach, Andy Katz of reports:
New Mexico and Iowa coach Steve Alford have agreed to the final details of a contract and Alford will be introduced as the Lobos' new coach at a news conference Friday, multiple sources in both camps said Thursday morning.

New Mexico targeted Alford within the past two weeks while also waiting to talk to Winthrop coach Gregg Marshall, whose team was playing in the NCAA Tournament. But according to multiple sources, New Mexico told Marshall on Tuesday that it would be committing to another candidate.

The courtship of Alford started in large part because of new university president David Schmidly's previous employment at Texas Tech. The Red Raiders are coached by Bob Knight, who coached Alford at Indiana in the 1980s.

Sources close to Alford said he was looking for a new challenge following some stressful seasons in Iowa City. The Hawkeyes have had some issues off the court, notably Pierre Pierce's legal troubles during Alford's tenure. Once the Hawkeyes' leading scorer, Pierce was charged with assault in 2002 and then in 2005 sentenced to prison on an array of charges involving an incident with a former girlfriend.
Actually, Alford should have been fired for his handling of the Pierce situation, but that's just my opinion.

But the real reason I grew sick of Alford was that he does not know how to develop players. I mean, Alford aplogists say he couldn't recruit good players at Iowa. That's bullshit. He recruited some very good players, very talented players, then squandered their abilities. But his real failure is that he can't take the kid with raw, underdeveloped talent and teach them. He pampered his stars and let the rest of the kids flounder.

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