We are two games into Pastner's fifth year as the head coach of University of Memphis basketball team. Some career highlights:
0-13 vs ranked opponents.
One NCAA tournament victory - a two point victory over Saint Mary's.
Best locks in the game.
Absolutely great guy and great advocate for the city.
And, and, and...
No intelligible scheme on either side of the ball. Lots of smiling. Complete lack of team discipline. Plenty of optimism. Zero cursing. Tons of curls. Not a drop of caffeine. All talk. No results.
Not for lack of trying. I believe Pastner is one of the hardest working people in any sport. He is consistently regarded as a top recruiter for that reason alone. Yet, we've had five years of hard work, with no measurable success to show for it.
The time is drawing nigh for someone else to take the reins of the University of Memphis basketball program...
This spring, the three-year show-cause penalty levied against Bruce Pearl by the NCAA will be lifted. Frank Haith will have coached roughly 30 games by that time. There will be ADs fighting for the chance to work with Bruce Pearl. For a coach who filled the seats of Thompson-Boling in the land that Peyton built, he will assuredly succeed again.
OK, that is a bit extreme. Most fans appreciate everything Pastner has done. He took a rudderless program and maintained a high level of talent on each team he fielded for five years. The time of talent-for-talents-sake is over. It's time to win ballgames. It's time to win them on national television. It's time to win them in March.
There was a time when Memphis made a big hire, bringing in a shamed, scandal-ridden coach to revitalize their program, as well as his own. It is no stretch to think Memphis can do the same thing again and find a coach who can bring home the trophy.
BBQ at Bruce's, everybody.