Thursday, January 23, 2014

Reading into the Pearl media narrative

Bruce Pearl got the featured spot in Seth Davis' latest column. Of course BC is the first school mentioned as a possible destination. There is also reference to SEC schools and even a return to Tennessee. Pearl then goes into great lengths to explain his situation and how he has so many reasons not to return to coaching (family, comfort in Knoxville, etc.). I don't doubt that family is a factor in his decision. But I do doubt that it will keep him from coaching again. I think as with this CBS column, Pearl is really just laying out the factors to a potential return and preemptively saving face if he is still blackballed by major programs. You don't cooperate with these sorts of columns unless you want your name out there and want to be mentioned as a coach. But does any of this matter to BC?

I don't think Pearl is bold enough to drop the BC reference to Seth Davis. Davis isn't dumb. He's probably just putting two and two together and rehashing gossip and speculation. Pearl is out there and his Alma mater's team is floundering. It is only natural to link the two. However, that still doesn't mean that BC will approach Pearl or that Pearl would take the job. Pearl has baggage and that matters to some vocal factions at BC. In the coming weeks I will write more about Pearl and BC, but for now know that he is talking about a return to coaching because he wants to coach a major program again.


GP11 said...

It would be insane for BC not to approach Pearl. The guy is a proven winner. He took a football-first SEC school to the top, even if he never won a national championship. He screwed up a few times, but guess what? We're talking about college sports. How anyone is ignorant enough to believe that shady stuff happens everywhere, I'll never understand. And his violation wouldn't even be one under current recruiting regulations. He lied about it and got caught. It's been 3 years. Let's get over the holier than thou attitude. If he takes more money or a bigger name job, fine, but if BC doesn't throw the kitchen sink at him, I will be extremely disappointed.

JoeBu said...

Amen GP11. I'd use every last resource to bring in Pearl.

dmyankees said...
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Joseph said...

So, it seems that some really that BC should have no moral compass because others don't. Winning at a sport is more important than standing for what is right. BC really failed you if you truly have no concept of right or wrong and value winning a game more than having a sense of what's really important.

dmyankees said...

I thought Pearl's suspension doesn't end until August? If so, does that impact the decision at all?

eagle1331 said...

You are aware, Joseph, that what Pearl did (a BBQ with recruits) is now completely acceptable under NCAA rules, right? Oh, and BC taught me to forgive others...

eagleboston said...

How is providing a BBQ an issue of morality? I equate it with going 5 miles over the speed limit. A violation, yes, but not an immoral act.

He is a proven coach, his brand of basketball is exciting and he is a BC grad. What more would we want in a coach?

mod34b said...

Joseph is right. Yep. I said that . Pearl has bad judgment and shitty ethics. Nyet to his return.

Eagle1331, are lying to investigators, suborning perjury, obstructing justice now "completely acceptable under NCAA rules.?" no sir.

Pearl was not burned by a BBQ, he violated the "10 Commandmants"

[Some folks in and around Knoxville today might cry foul. They will argue that their beloved coach was taken to the cleaners for a silly barbecue and that, compared to the landmines blowing up all across the college athletics countryside, his crime is nothing.
It’s true. The barbecue wasn’t a big deal.

The lying afterward was.

That was the kerosene tossed onto this brush fire. Had Pearl merely extended an ill-advised invite to a few recruits and their families, he would have been docked a few recruiting trips and maybe even some scholarships, but he’d still be coaching at the University of Tennessee.

Once he played Peter and denied the invite, denied the picture taken inside his house and denied knowing his assistant coach’s wife (and then even told Aaron Craft's father to deny, deny, deny), he elevated his petty fine to one of felonious proportions.

In the NCAA Committee on Infractions’ report, it is referred to as "unethical conduct." That’s NCAA-speak for lying, and you don’t lie to your parents. You don’t lie to your teachers. You don’t lie to your spouse. And you most certainly don’t lie to the NCAA.

“This case was narrow in scope,’’ COI vice chair Britton Banowsky said on Wednesday's NCAA conference call. “The serious nature relates to the unethical conduct. I’m not sure we would be here were it not for those allegations and those findings.’’ ]

JBQ said...

Once again, there is a comparison between a barbecue and paying Cam Newton's uncle 400K. The NCAA knows it. Ha Ha Clinton-Dix from Alabama will be a top 10 pick. He was suspended for accepting a 600 dollar "loan" from the assistant strength coach who in reality was the "paymaster" for the Crimson Tide. Let's be realistic. Mark Emmert from LSU is allegedly as crooked as they come. It is called sanctimonious hypocrisy. The basketball coach at St. Louis University gave a player a birthday cake and was reprimanded. Let's judge Bruce Pearl, one of your own, with a realistic looking glass. If he has done more than what he was accused, then "hang him at high noon". If the only charge is over a BBQ for families of recruits, weigh it in the context. Gene Stallings at Alabama was infiltrated by Auburn and gave a recruit a 1000.00 dollar loan to keep him from starving. The Alabama program was gutted. The Auburn program had a trustee who was investigated for a one BILLION dollar TARP payout and the funneling of money to players was a small part of the investigation. Bruce Pearl would appear to be a scapegoat to show that the NCAA is honest which it isn't. The continuing legal issues involved with Ed O'Bannon from UCLA basketball in regard to EA Sports and millions of dollars should be an eye opener. Father Leahy and other university presidents should reassert control. However, it would appear that the money involved is just too much to risk rocking the boat.

Lenny Sienko said...

Tonight's evening news reports of arrests in the decades old Lufthansa JFK robbery should remind BC fans and alums that "...let he who is without sin cast the first stone...".

What Bruce Pearl did at Tenn was small change compared to our history of "Goodfellas basketball".

"74": I've got the reveal for the Bruce Pearl intro by Bates. Pearl isn't visible until Baldwin whips off his head and it turns out to be Pearl,

Oh, how I would love to watch the brand of basketball his Milwaukee team played when they literally ran BC off the court.

Pearl Washington said...

There were a number of influential boosters at Tennessee that were not happy that hoops was better than football.

Pearl was told to keep it clean and not have those NCAA guys on campus.

UT sold him out to the NCAA so to close the book on the investigation and get them off the campus

Knucklehead said...

I don't think Pearl was very successful at Tennessee given they have Zero restrictions.

Pearl would not be successful at Boston College.

We need someone young that kids will gravitate towards. Someone from the Baltimore/North Carolina area would be great.

Other options: Tommy Amaker or Danny Hurley

Knucklehead said...

Newtons' FATHER got $180K NOT 400k.

Bravesbill said...

Tommy Amaker? You're kidding right? Dude already flamed out at a big time program. He's found his niche at a mid-major program so good for him. However, he is nothing more than that. And I saw above the word "felonious" thrown around and "obstruction of justice." And to that I have to laugh. He committed no crime by having a BBQ so exactly how is there obstruction? Finally, this morality stuff beig discussed is rich. Are we now going to use NCAA standards and definitions to define morality? Count me out, thanks. I'd agree that poor judgment could disqualify him from the job but stop with the morality nonsense.

GP11 said...

Joseph and Mod, BC has had point shaving scandals in both basketball and football. Clearly this sports lead to immoral acts and for Boston College to participate in them at all would be immoral and shows we all have no concept of right and wrong. What was I thinking??? And surely the education system and the Catholic church, which have had myriad scandals are also immoral and unjust! I need to go burn my BC diploma immediately.

Yikes guys.

Because he did wrong in the past does not mean he should have a black mark for life. Imagine you're having a large barbecue of friends and family and a recruit w/ 5 of his families members shows up. Your options are 1) kick them out which would be extraordinarily awkward and embarrassing or let them stay and hope it doesn't become an issue. The first is obviously against the rules but have you ever done something that was against the rules knowing it was inane to follow them? I'm assuming yes. Lying about it was wrong again, but we all screw up. I'm sure you have before. I'm sure you learned from it. I'm sure you're a better person for having learned from it.

Regarding his ability to win at Tennessee vs. BC given the restrictions is a valid point, but we also figured Donahue would because of his ability to win at Cornell. Clearly didn't work. Al went from Marist and Rhode Island to BC. He clearly did ok. Hiring a great coach always takes a bit of luck. I'll gladly roll the dice with Bruce Pearl.

Claver2010 said...

"I don't think Pearl was very successful at Tennessee given they have Zero restrictions."


In 6 years he made the tournament every single year. Took his team to the Sweet 16 half the time as well.

Joseph said...

If you think that winning is all that matters, then too bad. Win for what? So you can boast about attending a winning school. Dos your ego really need that? Talk about shallow stuff. Mine's bigger than yours.

GP11 said...

Then Joseph why do you care about BC sports? Why do you read and comment on this blog? What satisfaction do you get out of a program that has absolutely disintegrated?

You play to win the game. The players are 18-22. They're adults. They're not learning life lessons any more. The coaches are paid 6-7 figures to win games. How can you think it's about anything else?

And it's not an ego situation whatsoever. I care about BC sports because that's where I went to school. I want them to do well because watching great teams added so much to my experience at school. I want that for today's students. I want my school to be great at everything it does.

Because Pearl screwed up at Tennessee does not mean he will again. If you want a head coach that has zero flaws and has never made a mistake, you're never going to find one.

mod34b said...

I find this comment thread amazing...amazingly bad.

Why do people cling to such obviously wrong and misguided notions?

Take our man BBill. He says Pearl "committed no crime by having a BBQ so exactly how is there obstruction?" Well, no the BBQ was not the problem. Pearl lied -- badly and boldly - to investigators about the incident so they would not uncover the petty truth; he urged his staff to lie; he urged his recruit's father to lie. And he did all this over something petty and small. What would he do if it was something big he wanted to hide? Would he lie to Brad Bates face? Would he lie to Father Leahy? Would lie to BC Nation?

So this is not, and never was about a BBQ. It is about lying to authorities to hide bad behaviour -- that is what obstruction is. Ask Richard Nixon if the cover-up can be worse than the crime.

Now, look was GP11 and other say "BC has had point shaving scandals in both basketball and football." Yes, it is the old canard that will not die and will be miscontrued by yet another generation of superficial thinkers. Those scandals were scandals by BC players. The coach and BC admin had nothing to do with them and BC, the institution, was never charged with any malfeasance in either matter. So let's drop this bs.. makes you sound like that A**hole from ESPN who got rejected from BC and keeps misrepresenting this crap to give voice to his bitterness about BC .. .

Bottom line: Integrity counts, and Pearl has too little of it to to add up to being an Eagle coach. Not happening.

mod34b said...
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mod34b said... university-tennesee-public-infractions-report


mod34b said... university-tennesee-public-infractions-report


GP11 said...

Recruited by coaches who were hired by the athletic department who were hired by the board of trustees/president.

Look, I don't think the scandals reflect poorly on BC either or the administration/coaches/etc. Clearly I was being sarcastic. But you can't have it both ways. You say Pearl can't be hired because he lacks integrity which can damage BC but then how can we trust an administration that hires the people who recruit the kids who do drugs/shave points, etc.

I know what I'm saying is rash and over the top. That's the point. In my opinion saying a guy can never be trusted again and doesn't deserve a second chance because he lied about a BBQ is rash and over the top.

If there are better alternatives, I'm all for it, but right now we've got the chance to bring in a top flight, proven coach who otherwise we'd have no shot at. But he's paid the price, lost out on $10mn, had his reputation severely damaged, and has had 2 1/2 years to beat himself up over it. I'll forgive and forget. If we get burned I'll admit I was wrong. If we don't and BC succeeds, everyone wins.

Joseph said...

It wasn't lying about a BBQ that mattered, it was lying to the investigators regardless of the object of the lie. I do not believe in winning at all costs. I don't think that anyone here is asking for perfection. Bates and Leahy can interview whoever they can, but I hope that their judgement of employees is based on more than just the possibility of winning.

Bravesbill said...

Mod, there's is not "obstruction of justice" because there was no crime committed! And what authorities are you talking about? There was no criminal investigation so there can be no obstruction of justice. NCAA investigators are not authorities. That's my point. Yes, there was obstruction of an NCAA investigation, but the NCAA has no police powers. The NCAA is enforcing the very inane regulations it concocts. Joseph has insinuated that Pearl is immoral because he failed to follow NCAA regulations. Really? And yes he showed terrible judgment in lying and asking others to lie for him. I guess if utilize that standard, nobody would be able qualified to coach at BC.

Thomas said...

Do you really believe hiring Pearl would be employing a "win-at-all-costs" mentality? It's not as if he doesn't know he'll be under intense scrutiny by the NCAA and the administration wherever his next stop ends up being. I would hope and expect that he's learned from his mistakes and won't be foolish enough to make them again.

The question then becomes, can you sacrifice your "holier-than-thou" attitude and accept a coach who's made a mistake and paid dearly for it?

Joseph said...

First, there was no implication of his morality only a question in the debate. Second, where do some get off saying that others have a holier than thous attitude. It was not said nor implied. Do you know how to argue or debate? Is it ok in your mind to question someone because of past behavior? No one said don't interview anyone. What WAS said is that winning at all costs is not what we should entertain in coaches and It as pointed out that Pearl WAS hammered by the NCAA. So don't pick nits with the "justice" crap or holier than thou comparisons. We all want what is best for BC and the students and the alums. Some of us have serious questions about how to achieve these goals.

Mj said...

john 8:7

When they persisted in asking him, he stood up straight and replied, "Whoever among you is guiltless may be the first to throw a stone at her."

I think BC would be OK to hire a coach who sinned...

Thomas said...

If you truly believe a holier-than-thou attitude was not implied by your comments, go back and re-read them. With your reading glasses. And if you still don't think so, google the definition of holier-than-thou.

I'm not suggesting Pearl would be a great or even good fit at BC. Maybe he'd fall flat on his face. Maybe he'd win the ACC in year 1. All I'm saying is there is no sense in dismissing his candidacy, as you do not explicitly say but DO imply.

Tim said...

It's telling that a post merely speculating about Pearl as the BC coach generates about ten times more comments than any other post about BC hoops these days. The guy is generating increased interest in the program already.

Bravesbill said...

Joseph, at this point you're becoming a parody.

You state, "There was no implication of his morality only a question in the debate."

However, previously you said "So, it seems that some really that BC should have no moral compass because others don't."

Next you state, "Second, where do some get off saying that others have a holier than thous [sic] attitude."

However, you previously stated "BC really failed you if you truly have no concept of right or wrong and value winning a game more than having a sense of what's really important." Also, "If you think that winning is all that matters, then too bad. Win for what? So you can boast about attending a winning school. Dos your ego really need that? Talk about shallow stuff. Mine's bigger than yours."

You're a walking, talking contradiction Joseph.

mod34b said...

Bbill: pure sophistry.

Bravesbill said...

Legally correct. Makes a big difference. He committed no crimes. Just broke NCAA regulations.

Napolean Bonaparte said...

It would be insanity for Bates not to seek out and seriously interview Pearl for the job and hear him out. Worth reading this in case you missed it:

EL MIZ said...

this thread sort of baffles me. Pearl has "served his time" while being forced out of Tennessee and not coaching the past few years. American society at large forgives for far, far graver offenses. this guy had a bbq at his house and lied to the NCAA, an absolute sham institution. he made a handful of impermissible phone calls to recruits. and he got penalized and has been out of the game. isn't that how its supposed to work? do wrong, serve time, be able to re-enter society.

Bates should at the very least meet with the guy and see what he's like -- is he repentant and eager for a second opportunity? would he love to come back to his alma mater and resurrect the program and his career? if the feeling Bates gets is that Pearl is (A) rehabilitated, (B) remorseful, and (C) wants the job, i find it extremely hard to believe we'd find a better candidate.

Pearl went 231-46 at Southern Indiana (833% winning percentage), 86-38 at Milwaukee (69% winning percentage), and 145-61 (70% winning percentage) at Tennessee. 3 sweet 16s, an elite 8, and 7 ncaa appearances in his last 7 seasons coached.

(for comparisons sake, Donahue won just over 50% of his games in the Ivys, and things only really took a turn when he had the League's 3 best players - Foote, Wittman, Dale)

Pearl would do what Addazio did for football -- inject MUCH needed life into the program, be a face for the team, totally turn around the recruiting.

bottom line - if Bates meets with Pearl and is convinced he is rehabilitated and wants to come to BC, you have gotta hire him. the Whalepants Holier than Thou losers can follow Donahue and his whistle to wherever he winds up.

Lenny Sienko said...

When Bated asks Pearl: "Have you been rehabilitated?"

You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant
You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant
Walk right in it's around the back
Just a half a mile from the railroad track
You can get anything you want, at Alice's Restaurant

(With apologies to Arlo Guthrie)

Napolean Bonaparte said...

So Lenny what's your point? We shouldn't even interview the guy because Lenny knows that he is beyond redemption and will bring shame to BC - because Lenny knows that Bruce Pearl will say anything to get the coveted BC job? He has completely served his time and you never even met the guy. Catholicism rests on the power of forgiveness - its time BC set an example. All we want is a serious good faith interview. If Bates does that and concludes that there is still something wrong with the guy - fair enough. I hope he talks to Howland also.

Lenny Sienko said... have to learn a little history...especially since the Alice's Restaurant massacree happened in MA.

God, I feel even older in the cold this week, if I have to explain that when the recruiting Sgt asked Arlo "Have you been rehabilitated?" Arlo loses it, since there was never any real crime or offense in the first place.

Now, I'll get back in my time machine and return to the 1960's, a far, far better time in all respects.

CT said...

Why are we so focused on one guy? We're so eager to have an alum coach us? I think many are getting tunnel vision. Guess anyone looks good comparatively speaking, but still...

EL MIZ said...

CT, look at Pearl's resume. you would be hard pressed to find a more accomplished coach who would be willing to come to BC. he's great at what he does. why not hire him?

Hoib said...

I can't believe after watching the crap we have for the last 3 years that a BC hoop fan wouldn't love to have Peal coach us. it' s entertainment where after, who's more entertaining than Bruce?