Wednesday, March 07, 2012

From what I'm hearing right now....

Matt Henry will be the next head basketball coach at Mt. St. Mary's.

Henry reportedly has a scheduled interview with President Thomas Powell later this week and an announcement could be made shortly thereafter.

Henry coached the Mount the final four games of this season after Rob Burke left on administrative leave. Burke has since resigned. Henry and the Mountaineers won two of the final four games completing season sweeps of Fairleigh Dickinson and Bryant. The Mount lost to Monmouth and Central Connecticut State and a chance at the postseason in the final four games.

Henry a graduate of Trinity College in Texas, served as an assistant at Trinity, the Director of Basketball Operations at Georgetown, and the lead assistant for Burke during his two years at the Mount.

As of now, The Fan Blog is unaware of any other scheduled interviews.

Send an email to thefanblog@gmail.com

16 comments:

  1. I don't know when I've ever been so excited to be a Mount fan.

    I really hope Matt Henry succeeds but considering the Burke era went about as well as the Bay of Pigs but on and off the court, I really don't see the logic in staying within his staff.

    Oh well.

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  2. bug just discovered in AD office

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  3. This is embarrassing.

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  4. @ John - perhaps the troll 'K' has tried to con us?

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  5. IF this is indeed true, ss a Mount graduate and long time season ticket holder, this disgusts and saddens me. The administration has displayed a blatant lack of diligence in making this decision. Last I heard, being a "nice guy" is not a pre-requisite for being a DI Head Coach. Henry was top assistant for a team that lost 42 games in two years. It has been mentioned that he was 2-2 in the four games when he was interim. I think I could have even coached this team to wins over FDU and Bryant! Not an accomplishment. I can't believe that no other options are being comtemplated at this stage. Say it ain't so!

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  6. If the spin is "well we finished 2-2 with Henry!" then I might cry. He beat 3-26 Fairleigh Dickinson and 2-28 Bryant.

    The idea of hiring him without anybody else interviewing is perhaps the most asinine thing I have ever heard.

    I think a lot of the problems that arose with Burke could have been discovered had the search committee been more diligent the first time around. How do we respond this time? By being even less diligent.

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  7. I really don't mean to take the "glass is half empty" approach but if this is true, it could very well be one of the worst executive decisions that I have ever witnessed.
    While Henry might be the right pick, there is no way to know without performing the due diligence. There are only 300+ Division 1 head coaching positions and I'm pretty certain that there are a lot of very qualified individuals who would be interested in the position. I'm not saying that this should become a 6 or 8 week process where they interview 25 guys but they should at least consider 3-5 qualified canidates and make a decision after each has had an opportunity to interview and they have have had a chance to speak to references.
    If this does go down as reported, it will say to me that the administration is either completely delusional and arrogant or they (he) is happy to settle with mediocrity.

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  8. I hope if Henry succeeds all you "experts" eat your words and admit you were wrong. What is so embarrassing, disgusting, and saddening? The pessimism around here is ridiculous.

    He's young, of course he doesn't have an extensive resume' that matches guys that have been around for 15-20 years. No young coaches do, but there seems to be a lot of them succeeding these days.

    I think people need to move on from the Milan era and the illusion of hiring Brion or K-Rob. Yes, we all enjoyed those few years of success, but it's not like we had created a dynasty. We're not talking about Coach K and his staff here. We never even won the regular season title and underachieved (at least based on preseason expectations) the last 2 years he was here.

    Let's move on and see if this guy can get us back to those heights. It doesn't seem impossible.

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  9. @John - How do you know they didn't do that? They just went through this process 2 years ago, I'm sure they already had a list of candidates from those they interviewed previously and could gauge whether they were superior/inferior to Henry.

    One more thing to remember, is we could not afford to lose this incoming recruiting class. Keeping Henry will hopefully insure that they are still on board.

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  10. I can't sit here and listen to this drivel any longer.

    When hiring a coach at a small school like the Mount, I think that there is a certain criteria that you are looking for.

    1.) Is the person a nice guy? When talking about Matt Henry, the answer to that seems to be an overwhelming 'yes'. Yet, somehow that notion seems to have turned into a rallying cry for why he shouldn't be hired.

    2.) Is the person young, energetic, enthusiastic, and hungry to win? This is where those of you that are posting on this blog that haven't been to any games in the last two years, or only come up for the alumni weekend game, need to keep your mouths shut because you have no idea what the answer to that question is. The answer is 'yes, very much so.' From Day 1, Henry has shown 10x the amount of energy as anyone else on the Mount sideline. I like that in a coach, and I think I'd be hard pressed to find anyone who didn't.

    3.) Is the person a good X's and O's coach? Any coach we're gonna get is almost certainly going to have no head coaching experience, so the answer to that question can't really be answered until you've hired the person and throw them into the fire. As far as Henry's 4 game sample size, I was pleased with the in-game management and philosophy. Watching the Central Connecticut State game on TV, knowing they were outmatched talent-wise, I liked how they pushed the ball up the court and got a much of good looks and lay-ups as a result.

    4.) Is the person a good recruiter? That's really the million dollar question in the NEC. Let's go back and look at these last three years with Henry on the recruiting trail. After Milan and the recruits left two years ago, by the time Burke was hired, anything you could get out of that recruiting year at that late stage is really just gravy at that point. To get a guy like Norfleet that year is quite the heist. Let's look at last year's recruits. You have two transfers who everyone has been gushing about all year, a redshirt who we can't pass judgment on until he plays, and two guys in Holley and Owens who its really too early tell what they will be become. Gotta wait and see how the tranfers and redshirt end up doing, but by all accounts, I'd say that was a pretty good class. And then this year, there's two players that are on two powerhouse programs and then this Graves guy who Henry got when he was a role player on two great state championship teams the last two years. He got him before all the players on that team graduated and before all the other D1 schools came knocking and Graves was forced to be the star, which he proved he was more than capable to do this year.

    I really hope this rumor that Matt Henry will be the next head coach at Mount St. Mary's is true. I think he's going to do great things with the program.

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  11. @Onions - you forgot about Parker, no worst than the 2nd best player on this team last year. He wasn't on scholarship, but he was a recruited walk-on. To identify a talent like that and then convince him to come without a scholarship deserves some praise

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  12. The Pessimism comes from the fact that Henry was the VP for the last two years of what were quite frankly two horrendous seasons to watch. Rob Burke - and therefore those associated with him - took the fun out of Mount basketball.

    I'm really sick of the excuses that have been made for Burke. The cupboard was not bare the day before Milan Brown took the Holy Cross job. The cupboard became bare, when Dante Morales (who has averaged 5 points more a game in his first two years in the CAA - than Rashad Whack who is viewed as one of our saviors) decided he wasn't coming to the Mount if Brown wasn't the head coach - and Burke then essentially didn't want Patriot League freshman of the year Justin Burrell - because he thought he could get a better point guard. In three years of recruiting that hasn't happened. He also ran off Jeff James (or whatever his name was) much as he did with Dave Golladay after last season. Golladay after spending a year in JUCO is likely to back at a DI school next year with Seton Hall and Wright State as the top pursuers.

    Burke was hated by everyone. Players, Managers, staff members, faculty, bus drivers, referees (yes Richard that is why we never got a call), fans, etc. And fair or unfair Matt Henry as the second in command is associated with that.

    If Matt Henry is the next coach, he has obstacles with the fan base (myself included) that he must overcome, that a fresh face from anywhere else will not have to deal with.

    And in my opinion that is why you have to at least open the door to other options. As I stated, I am unaware of any of the other options being taken seriously. I am not 100% certain of it being the case. But all indicators to me are that the search has not gone external.

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  13. Your right, in the 72 hours since Bad Guy Burke resigned(by the way, why is this not being addressed more, what excatly went on with this and why is the lid sealed so tight on this fact, nothing at all was said, personal, family, nothing)there must have been 3-5 qualified canidates on campus being interviewed for the position. Everyone just dropped everything and jumped to run and come to the Mount to interview.
    None of us are experts and I hope that we are eating our words this time next year, which means that the Mount had a succesful season, but as so many people have noted, the two wins that Henry had are equal to Bryant's season and one less then FDU.
    I have to agree with John on this one and say the TP is delusional and arrogant in this whole process. Why is he not standing up and saying that his search for the Catholic Idenity that brought Burke in backfired and the coach that he hired(go back and read all of the press releases, it was him not the ahtletic department, that hired Burke)regressed the program.
    Succesful programs are at the liberty of rushing a decision and hiring an assistant when the head coach resigns and continues to advance the program, but this is not the case here at the Mount. These last two years have not been succesful so why continue the trend.
    I will step away from the Milan era, I will take Jamion out of the equation as well, but at least take the time(2-3 weeks) and go out and properly vet and search for the next succesful coach for the Mount.

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  14. Everyone should quit connecting Henry so closely with Burke.

    We're not going to see what anyone can do as a headcoach until they get a chance.

    Why not associate Henry with III during their successful years together at Georgetown?

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  15. It's obvious to me that the passion for Mount Hoops runs deep for everyone who has commented the past couple of days. It's doesn't take a pair of Coke Bottle glasses to see that. Being one of the 5 smallest Divsion 1 schools means that opportunities for success are, in my eyes, few & far between. That's why once we taste a little bit of success, we want it more & it hurts so much b/c we've been to the Dance. 1995, 1999, & 2008 were special seasons, no doubt, but when has the Mount been considered a consistent challenger for the NEC Championship??? The Mount has only been a preseason favorite twice, back prior to the '95-'96 season & the '09-'10 season. Other than that, we have been mediocre at best, & won our last 2 Conference championships as a #4 seed (2008) & #6 seed (1999).

    The Mount botched hiring Robert Burke as Milan's replacement period, end of sentence. He never gelled with the school. Could it be because he was used to being involved in larger programs with loads of money that the Mount will never have...possibly. The accountability will never surface & this will be swept under the rug almost like it never happened & I'm cool w/ that. Turn the page & more on. The only thing we can hope for as fans is that the same mistake isn't made again. All of this talk of who is Head Coach matters to an extent, but until we can compete against Long Island, Robert Morris, Wagner, & Quinnipiac, it doesn't matter who our Coach is. Those programs have lapped us in terms of recruiting, facilities (although LIU does play in a box), & recent success. RMU has been to 4 straight NEC Tourney Finals, LIU is a repeat NEC Champion. We have nothing to hang our hat on but 2008 & we are too far removed from our other championship seasons to matter. The Here & Now is painfully obvious. Attendance is non-existent, the talent pipeline is a question mark, & now we are onto our 3rd Head Coach in the past 4 seasons.

    I'm not saying anything earth-shattering here. These are all known facts. I think we all just want to help our Alma Mater plan for the future & get out of the "Dark Ages." Incorporate some forward-thinking instead of the status quo. Do I have all the answers or ideas. Definitely not. I'm not in Emmitsburg to see the day-to-day interactions & on-goings. I will tell you this, until they find a way to get the students to start showing up again, it won't matter. Why should the players care, when their friends & classmates don't bother. The next Coach needs to make a connection with the student body in the most crucial way. Mass email the students, have promotions around the games, have a Mount Spirit Chair as part of the SGA & pair them up w/ someone in the Athletic Department, but do something to actually make it worthwhile for the students to get their nose out of their books & walk basically a frickin' half mile to the Arena! College is the BEST four or five (based on some of my buddies) years of your life. They need to find their "selling point," & sell themselves a little. Don't be shy...be proud of what & who you are. The only issue is what does the Mount feel the most proud of most recently??? I only wish I knew...

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  16. @ Kevin J. - thank you for your positive suggestions. If I had a dollar for everything posted lately with forward looking actual helpful plans, I would be a poor man.

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