Monday, September 9, 2019

Hiring Alums: Does It Help or Hurt?

SEPTEMBER 9, 2019 | written by Steve Ulrich
your must-read briefing on what's driving the day in NCAA Division III
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>> This morning's word count: 1,000 words. How did I even do that?
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1. It Doesn't Hurt to Hire Alumni as Head Coaches. But It Doesn't Help Either.

"Hiring an alumnus1 has been a marketable, low-risk, high-reward strategy for athletic departments for almost a half-century. Unless a splashy move is feasible, if an athletic director seeks to turn around a program — or merely wants to sell more tickets — there are far worse blueprints to follow than returning someone to their roots. Which is perhaps why alumni have permeated the market for much of the modern era. Since 1975, 38 FBS football programs2 hired more than one alumnus as head coach.3 Over that period, there was only one season in which alumni didn’t hold at least 10 percent of the available head coaching gigs.

In addition to recent success, there are several qualities that make the alumni coaches unique. Alumni traditionally begin their college head coaching careers where they suited up. Of the 146 alumni head coaches from 1975 to 2018, only 26 (17.8 percent) had previous Division I head coaching experience. That has continued to be the norm. Since 2000, of the 53 alumni head coaches who were hired, all but eight were becoming first-time head coaches.
But is hiring an alumnus predictive in any significant way?
Not especially."

>> The Pull of Alma Mater: In 1957, Paul "Bear" Bryant left a winning program at Texas A&M to return to Tuscaloosa where the Alabama Crimson Tide had endured a fourth consecutive losing season. Why? "I've heard mama calling."

>> Be Smart: This season, alumni will command 18 programs, or 13.8 percent of the FBS market.

>> Rocky Top: Tennessee's Phillip Fulmer is the last coach to win a national title at his alma mater.

>> Go Deeper: Read More from FiveThirtyEight

2. Engineering a Sports Turnaround

"Over the past 12 years, various teams at MIT have won 110 NEWMAC championships - more than twice the number the Engineers had ever won before that period. On top of that, MIT athletes in the last dozen years have captured 15 individual NCAA championships and 993 were named All-Americans.

The recent success in athletics at a school known mostly for its science and engineering prowess has been shaped in large part by one woman, Julie Soriero. the director of athletics since 2007, who is retiring at the end of this semester."

>> Quotable: When approached by MIT about their search for an AD, she asked the question that everybody asked, "Does MIT have athletics?"

>> Quotable II: "We will not apologize for winning."

>> DYK: Soriero played basketball, field hockey and lacrosse at Penn State before coaching women's basketball.

>> Go Deeper courtesy of WGBH-FM

3. Fireworks at Kent State

The match between Maine and Temple - which began at 9 a.m. - was scoreless after the first overtime period on a field next to Dix Stadium, where the Kent State football team plays. At 10:45, the players were asked to leave the field in preparation for the noon time launch of pre-game fireworks for the Kent State football game.

>> Quotable: "Prior to the contest we were made aware of timing issues regarding pre-game football activities. While we would have greatly appreciated the opportunity to play the final 10 minutes of our contest, the KSU administration made the decision they felt was most appropriate."
- Ken Ralph, U. of Maine athletics director
>> Quotable II: "As a member of not one but four of Kent State's most successful teams in school history, I am EMBARRASSED and DISGUSTED with the lack of respect shown to our sport."
- Madison Thompson
>> Go Deeper courtesy of the Bangor Daily News
4. Weekend Top-25 Review

Soccer (M)
(3) Chicago d. (21) North Park, 3-1

(22) Johns Hopkins d. (6) Montclair State, 2-0
(8) Luther d. (12) St. Thomas, 3-2 (OT)

Soccer (W)
(1) Williams d. (22) Tufts, 2-1
(19) St. Thomas d. (3) Washington-St. Louis, 1-0

(5) William Smith d. (7) Messiah, 2-0
(21) Farmingdale State d. (6) Misericordia, 1-0

(18) Trinity, Texas d. (10) Hardin-Simmons, 3-1
(16) Johns Hopkins tied (24) Stevens, 2-2 (OT)

Field Hockey
(2) Tufts d. (11) Williams, 2-1
(7) Salisbury d. (4) Messiah, 2-1
(16) Christopher Newport d. (5) Johns Hopkins, 2-1

(15) Bowdoin d. (20) Amherst, 2-1

(1) Emory d. (14) Christopher Newport, 3-0
(1) Emory d. (9) Berry, 3-2

(2) Calvin d. (8) Wittenberg, 3-0
(3) Juniata d. (15) Ithaca, 3-0
(23) Pacific Lutheran d. (7) Trinity, Texas, 3-2
(17) Hope d. (8) Wittenberg, 3-0
(9) Berry d. (20) Mary Hardin-Baylor, 3-2
(9) Berry d. (14) Christopher Newport, 3-1
(25) Washington-St. Louis d. (11) Gustavus Adolphus, 3-0

(20) Mary Hardin-Baylor d. (14) Christopher Newport, 3-1

(21) Washington & Jefferson d. (18) Wittenberg, 16-8


5. Polling
  1. Mary Hardin-Baylor
  2. Mount Union
  3. UW-Whitewater
  4. Saint John's
  5. North Central
  6. St. Thomas
  7. Johns Hopkins
  8. Muhlenberg
  9. Hardin-Simmons
  10. Bethel
11. Whitworth, 12. Linfield, 13. Delaware Valley, 14.Illinois Wesleyan, 15. Washington & Jefferson, 16. Berry, 17. John Carroll, 18. Centre, 19. Rensselaer, 20. Wheaton, Ill., 21. Wabash, 22. Wesley, 23. UW-La Crosse, 24. Ithaca, 25. Wittenberg.

>> Big Movers: Washington & Jefferson (+6), Centre (+2), Wheaton, Ill. (+2), Wabash (+2).

>> Big Drops: Wittenberg (-7)

>> Hello: Wesley, UW-La Crosse, Ithaca.

>> Bye-Bye: Brockport, Randolph-Macon, St. Norbert.


6.  Comings ... 

  ... and Goings

7.  Nigel Chatman 1998-2019

Our sincerest condolences go out to the Otterbein University football team and community after the passing of sophomore defensive tackle Nigel Chatman on Friday morning. 

>> Quotable"There was never a day that he didn't have a smile on his face."

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