Sunday, March 22, 2009

How about Travis Ford as the new head coach at Kentucky?

We have been criticizing Ben Howland despite his three consecutive Final Fours, because, when you coach at one of the most historic college basketball programs, you are not just responsible for a college basketball program, you are also responsible to play the game at its highest level.

Ben Howland is not playing basketball the way it should be played. Instead, he is using an ugly scorched-earth approach, by beating up and continually fouling the opponents, so they get tired of it all and give up trying.

So when we were watching the Oklahoma State vs Pittsburgh game, with the Cowboys running up and down the court and having a very exciting game against Pitt, the light bulb lit up.

Why not have Travis Ford be the new head coach at Kentucky? He is a former Kentucky great, and at the same time, he has coached across the country, which should be a big plus in recruiting from a larger and more diverse pool. His up and down style of play should be more than enough to bring in lots of talented recruits.

Because let's face it, Billy "The Clyde" Gillispie is really more of a Ben Howland type of a coach. You are not going to see run-and-gun-and-fun. And he hasn't been to even one Final Four.

And as one of the biggest programs in college basketball history, Kentucky should really be playing the game the way it should be played, instead of defensive slugfests and control-freakishness.

Because what works at UTEP and Texas A&M with jucos and under-the-radar players, does not work with NBA-caliber talent and Final Four caliber teams. When you have players who aspire to be NBA millionaires, they are not going to want to play under that much control or be subjected to boot-camp-style practices even on game-days.

Complain all you want about Tubby, but did Tubby ever "cause" Kentucky to play a post-season NIT road game?

A post-season NIT road game at Creighton? Time to bring in Travis Ford or someone else!

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