Take on Pirate Sports
From the Anchor Desk
Wednesday, February 23, 2005
By Brian Bailey
Herrion deserved another
|Replay Tuesday night's Brian Bailey Show,
with guest Denny O'Brien and callers
discussing ECU's decision to replace basketball
Herrion at the end of the season:
Select audio clip
I didnít notice the broom in
Terry Hollandís hand when he was named the Pirate athletics director.
Maybe we all should have,
because it is beginning to look like a clean sweep in the Pirate program.
Bill Herrion was the latest
casualty on Tuesday.
Donít get me wrong. I had the
utmost amount of respect for Coach Holland before his arrival, and that will
continue, even after he fired a friend.
Holland may find a better
coach, but he wonít find a harder worker then Bill Herrion.
Herrion inherited an
impossible situation. Sure, he came to Greenville with the hope of East
Carolina moving to Conference USA in all sports. He had no idea that the
move would come so quickly.
That move to C-USA made this
coaching job virtually an impossible one. East Carolina wasnít very good in
the CAA. Suddenly they had to recruit better athletes to try and compete
with the likes of Louisville, Cincinnati, Marquette, etc.
Herrion hit the ground running
and put together a program that could compete in C-USA at times. There were
the two wins over Marquette, a victory over Louisville, a win over
Charlotte. Unfortunately, the wins just didnít come often enough.
Still, I think Herrion
deserved one year in the forthcoming watered-down Conference USA. This is a
league that the Pirates can compete in. Memphis is the only kingpin that
stays in the reconfigured league. The conference will be solid, but itís a
league that Bill Herrion would have won in next year.
He wonít get the chance,
For whatever reason, Holland
and Nick Floyd decided to offer Coach Herrion a chance to stay at East
Carolina in a different role. They offered a guy who had spent the last six
years sweating his guts out in one of the nationís best basketball leagues a
chance to help raise money for the institution that no longer wanted him as
a head coach.
Itís sort of like your girl
friend breaking up with you and then asking you to get her a date.
The head coach usually comes
out fine in these kinds of deals. Herrion has three years left on his
contract at around 150 thousand dollars per year.
Greg Herenda and the rest of
the staff arenít as lucky. Herenda stayed at East Carolina after turning
down a lucrative deal at Virginia. Ironically, Cavaliers coach Pete Gillen
could lose his job at any time as well.
Dino Pressley and George
Stackhouse will also be looking for work, though Stackhouse might stick with
a new coach because of his relationship with both Corey Rouse and Jeremy
Ingram. Stackhouse was their coach at Kinston High School.
The question now is just how
will this East Carolina team react to the firing of its coach. Rumors have
swirled all year long that Herrion wasnít a playerís coach. But this team
never quit this season and has a realistic chance to run the table and end
the regular season with a trio of wins.
Regardless, the jump to
Conference USA proved to be Herrionís undoing. The hard work, the sweat, the
blood, the tears that Herrion and his staff shed in trying to make East
Carolina competitive should have been enough to get the coach one season in
the new C-USA.
Good things happen to good
people, so Bill Herrion and his staff will be fine.
Next year, Hollandís choice
will have success and he will win some games.
Deep down, heíll have to thank
Herrion and his staff for moving this program to a place where success can
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02/23/2007 01:31:31 AM