Sunday, December 11, 2016
Bruce Pearl on the schedule at the wrong time
I don't think BC put a ton of thought into playing Auburn Monday night. It was really driven by our shared apparel partner Under Armour. But the timing and Auburn's coach make things that much more interesting. Because Bruce Pearl could just as easily be coaching BC right now.
Based on his first two years back in college basketball at Auburn, there is no guarantee that Pearl would have turned BC around. Pearl has struggled to integrate transfers (sound familiar?) and win meaningful conference games. This year is off to a more promising start although they've played a favorable schedule thus far.
Although he was available when BC made their last coaching change, Pearl was never a real candidate. Despite his ties to the school, his NCAA show clause made him an automatic no with BC's leadership. And given what we know about Brad Bates now, I don't think he had the political instinct nor desire to get support for Pearl among BC's leadership. Plus, I don't know if Pearl would have wanted to return to BC as it was set up then. Why go to a Power 5 program where you will have to fight battles on budgets and admissions, when those same obstacles don't exist at another school offering you a job?
As BC decides what to do with the Athletic Department, the Athletic Director and our major coaches, the school has to think about Pearl and other coaches like him. Can we give those coaches what they want without compromising who we are? I believe we can. It will start a commitment from the Board. Then the AD change. Finally finding another Bruce Pearl.