Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Steve Addazio named HC

In what will go down as an epic failure of managed expectations, Temple Head Coach Steve Addazio has been hired to take over for Frank Spaziani in Chestnut Hill.  Despite reports that BC would sign either Al Golden or Bob Diaco, Brad Bates elected to sign Temple's second year head coach.

Addazio is a safe, solid hire who has the energy to begin rebuilding the BC football program.  He has a reputation for being a well connected and effective recruiter and has stolen players away from BC in the past.  He focuses primarily on program-building and has a reputation for leaving schematic details to the coordinators.  I think there are a lot of parallels between TOB and Addazio.  Neither will ever be a "sexy" hire.  Both give significant latitude to coordinators.  Neither carry a lot of risk but both have relatively modest ceilings.  If anything, Addazio has more energy and will be a better recruiter.

The case for hiring Addazio is pretty clear.  With conference realignment, BC needs someone who can definitely bring respectability to the program within the next two years.  Diaco is enough of an unknown that he could very well have fallen flat on his face at BC, potentially leaving this program beyond repair after three more years of ineptitude.  Addazio will have BC at a seven or eight win level by year three guaranteed.

That being said, any hope of BC ending its soap-operaness anytime soon has immediately gone out the window.  Addazio seems intent on bringing back BC coaches who previously left the program for Temple.  I don't have anything against Ryan Day but he was probably the third best offensive mind on an offensively challenged staff just two years ago.  How much has he really learned in one year at Temple?  This program may have needed a clean break from the past to move forward.

Then there's the fact that Addazio went just 4-7 last year at Temple.  The main excuse (yes, we're already onto excuses) is that Addazio was coaching a Big East schedule with MAC talent.  With all respect to the Big East, a 9-4 MAC team is better than a 4-7 Big East team and there's simply no getting around the fact that Temple regressed in year two under Addazio's watch.

This is an extremely controversial hire.  When you make a move that is so against the conventional wisdom, you really are strictly liability for the results of that decision.  That's true in any field, but especially in sports.  If Bates hired Diaco and this team fell flat after three years, everyone would say "at least it was a bold hire, no one could have known."  If this hire fails alumns are going to be calling for Bates' head, and rightfully so.

I was more optimistic about this hire before I knew that Day and Rogers are probably making a return to the heights.  I don't think anyone knows what to expect at this point.  It's going to be a very interesting six years.

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