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Comment Archives: Stories: Sports: Tiger Blue

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

Hey Memphis get it straightened out so when you play Louisville Cards the competion is like it used to be and Tubby and Rick can talk about Uk before the game

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Robert Summers on 04/11/2017 at 10:31 AM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

Couldn't agree with you more, Joseph Russell.

I want Coach Smith to succeed because I love watching the Tigers play deep into March.
But I know that this job is on a level above the likes of Texas Tech, Minnesota, Tulsa, or Georgia.

I know Memphis isn't on Kentucky's level but they certainly pay the coaches like they are and the fans expect nothing less.

So expectations are overly high but the boosters pay coaches enough to strive to meet those high standards.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Salim Rivers on 04/08/2017 at 4:27 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

Memphis basketball is about to hit its nadir. Had coach Smith kept Keelon Lawson on his staff as an assistant coach, we would been guaranteed to have amazing players for the next 5 or 6 years. Now, the cupboard is bear, very bear!

I understand that coach Smith did not hire Keelon Lawson, he inherited him. But, he inherited a pipeline of top-notch players for the next five or six years. If he did not want to take advantage of that pipeline and wanted to relegate Keelon to less of a position than he had originally agreed to, he should have been beating the local bushes and kissing the local babies' booties, to insure a future influx of talent.

He chose to not respect Keelon and to not kiss booty. He will do things his way with mediocre players and Memphis may or may not make an NCAA appearance during his reign. If we do make one, it will be short-lived.

We had a stubborn Josh Pastner who was, for several years, a great recruiter and a terrible floor coach. All he needed to get the ball rolling was to hire a decent XO assistant and lean on him. Had he done so, Memphis would have been a perennial top 25 team. Josh did not do this, until he reached Georgia Tech, where the AD insisted he do so. Guess what Josh, it worked! Now we have a stubborn Tubby Smith who has the keys to success in front of him; kiss the booty of the local high school and AAU coaches, the local parents, and the local prospects or let Keelon be an assistant coach, as he was hired to be.

Tubby has chosen to keep his own staff, let his lone recruiter work himself to death, mostly unsuccessfully, and not engage the local talent. I am not sure if his approach is lazy or stubborn or both, but it is not smart.

I hope Tubby will surprise me, but I doubt it!

2 likes, 4 dislikes
Posted by Joseph Russell on 04/07/2017 at 2:31 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

@GroveReb84 and @Salim Rivers; All valid points, well stated, but the U of Memphis basketball program is sadly becoming just a memory of past glory. I too, respect Coach Smith. He's done some remarkable things. But, the truth is, his glory days are behind him. Hate to hit another raw nerve, but look at the success Josh has had at GA Tech in such a short time. Lotta folks couldn't wait to see him leave. He was young, he was Calipari's Asst. and he had a great basketball IQ. But he was too mellow and polite. All this blathering reminds me what I heard Alabama fans gripe and cry about when Bear Bryant croaked. Honestly, no coach worth his salt wants the Memphis job. Look at the talent that left under Josh and now Tubby. John Calipari was still a fairly young man when he got the Memphis job, but mature enough to reign in the egos. All of whom weren't from Memphis. I emphasize the word ego. So many of these young players were just too big for their britches. Their "talent" wasn't what they thought it was. Yet, the coach falls on the sword. The coach isn't on the court missing free throws and taking bad shots. If this gets any worse, it's back to C-USA. Memphis will simply be a non-factor in college basketball and the local talent will keep fleeing for greener pastures. Kudos to Tubby for trying and keeping it classy.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Paul Scates on 04/06/2017 at 8:49 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

And I like Coach Tubby Smith and want him to succeed. But Memphis isn't Minnesota, it isn't Texas Tech, the Tigers and its fan base thrives on big name players taking the team deep into the tournament. If you don't know that, you are not a true blue Tiger basketball fan!

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Salim Rivers on 04/06/2017 at 7:09 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

"but if he had the talent Calipari recruits he would have 2 or 4 national titles." Then why hasn't Tubby recruited that talent in order to win 2 or 4 national titles? Mike does it at Duke, Roy does it at UNC, why can't Tubby do this?

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Salim Rivers on 04/06/2017 at 7:07 PM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

And I like Coach Tubby Smith and want him to succeed. But Memphis isn't Minnesota, it isn't Texas Tech, the Tigers and its fan base thrives on big name players taking the team deep into the tournament. If you don't know that, you are not a true blue Tiger basketball fan!

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by Salim Rivers on 04/06/2017 at 6:40 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

@Oak,

You may be right.

I just don't see Tubby being the type of coach to accomplish what Memphis wants to accomplish with its program.

What makes Memphis's program attractive is not the name on the jersey, the conference, any of that. What makes the job attractive is the abundance of local talent that you can easily have if you know how to manage the system in this city and if you can manage the off court headaches that come with local talent and so many local interested parties that want to have their hands in the program.

The hard part is managing the families (see: the Lawsons). Those that have managed that in the past have had success (Finch/Bartow). Calipari was a different type of success, and Tubby isn't going to go that route either.

If Tubby isn't going to leverage the local Memphis talent or have the stomach to do what has to be done to leverage that talent, then the Memphis program is no better than Minnesota or Texas Tech for him, and the results he achieved at those schools are no better than what Pastner gave the Memphis program. Time will tell, but I think it's a bad sign that he's showing an unwillingness to work with the typical Memphis talent base.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by GroveReb84 on 04/06/2017 at 4:42 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

Why does everyone always repeat this thing about Penny Hardaway loves to play golf, as if that will keep him from coaching on the college level. Last I checked he loves being around basketball also.

He doesn't need the money, but he certainly takes the time to be in the gym coaching during the high school season and during the summer AAU circuit. Couldn't he be playing golf instead of coaching high school aged players.

Seems to me he loves being around the game of basketball more than chasing a little white ball on the golf course.

1 like, 1 dislike
Posted by Salim Rivers on 04/06/2017 at 2:03 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

It's not a mess. It's the inevitable result when a new head coach comes on. Folks leave if they don't like the new flavor. Tubby needs a crew that buys what he is selling on gameplay and coaching style. Given previous evidence, this leads to national quality play.

Give the coach his due. The Lawsons are just in it for the Lawsons.

6 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by OakTree on 04/06/2017 at 1:50 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

I disagree with some things said, mainly in the comments. First, Penny is NOT going to become the Memphis head basketball coach IMO. Why would he want to? Yes, he bleeds blue, but he doesn't need the money, he has the glory and he loves to play golf. He can work high school and AAU and it not interfere too much with his personal life. A head college basketball coach doesn't have a lot of free time most of the year.

Secondly, Tubby has been to some NCAA tournaments but other than the championship at Kentucky, what highly sought after recruit has he signed? That's not him. He probably should be an NBA coach.

The bigger question here is how does Memphis get out of this mess?

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by bogeybill on 04/06/2017 at 1:42 PM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

Tubby has only been at the helm for one season and shake ups are to be expected. In spite of all, Memphis still had a winning season and if had not been for the dive in the latter season, we probably would have gotten into the NIT at least.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by LoveBC on 04/06/2017 at 9:22 AM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

May be, will,be,Better,without, them! GO TIGER'S GO!!! Tubby,now,has,his,way!!!

3 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Roger Jones on 04/05/2017 at 8:17 PM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

Memphis will be ok, Tubby has won everywhere he has been, At Kentucky he had them in the ncaa tournament every year. Calipari can't say that, but if he had the talent Calipari recruits he would have 2-4 national titles.

3 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Bball on 04/05/2017 at 6:48 PM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

Memphis will be ok, Tubby has won everwhere he has been. At Kentucky they made the ncaa tournament every year. Calipari can't even say that! but if he had the talent Calipari recruits he would have 2 or 4 national titles.

2 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Bball on 04/05/2017 at 6:40 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

All this reflects why college male sports in so many schools is such a turnoff. Add in the obscene money and attention in a nominally academic setting, suddenly the University of Phoenix don't look so bad.

5 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by CL Mullins on 04/05/2017 at 6:32 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

I think back to the late 80s and early 90s, when Larry Finch had somehow angered Ted Anderson at Hamilton. Anderson then helped Nolan Richardson build a recruiting pipeline to Memphis for Arkansas, which led to 3 Final Fours, 2 Championship Games and one National Championship. Arkansas started FOUR Memphians the night they defeated Duke in 1994 to win it all.

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by LeftWingCracker on 04/05/2017 at 5:00 PM

Re: “Three (Quick) Thoughts on the Lawsons' Exodus

@Grove - Can't agree with you here. Tubby has been successful doing things Tubby's Way at too many other places. He just needs the space to do that. I'm waiting to see how he bounces after this. I suspect he'll be back at it, and we will be happy, if we give him his head. Double or triple-guessing a guy at his level will be unproductive.

9 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by OakTree on 04/05/2017 at 4:55 PM
Posted by OakTree on 04/05/2017 at 4:41 PM

Re: “Dedric and K.J. Lawson Leaving Tiger Basketball Program

Memphis: this is why you can't have nice things.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Long Duck Dong on 04/05/2017 at 4:38 PM

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