Was it Nebraska or Michigan?
One team was turned down by an up-and-coming head coach and instead hired a famous alumn which is a respected assistant coach in the NBA.
The other team hired a coach who has already shown he can be extremely successful and could be considered the best hire for a basketball program this off-season.
This is not to be critical of Michigan’s hire of Juwan Howard. He may end up being a great hire. This is more about Nebraska’s hire of Fred Hoiberg.
Michigan could be considered to be a top eight program over the past twelve years. Since John Beilein was hired they have two Big Ten Championships, two Big Ten Tournament Championships and have reached two Finals Fours. They made it to the championship game both times. They reached the NCAA Tournament in nine of Beilein’s twelve seasons at Michigan.
Nebraska on the other hand could be considered the historically worst power five (or six) program in all of the NCAA. As we all know, Nebraska has never won a NCAA Tournament game in program history.
Yet, it appears to me that Michigan hired their own Tyronn Lue. That is not a compliment, and if Nebraska would have actually hired Tyronn Lue I would have thought it would have been a mistake.
Tyronn Lue won as a head coach in the NBA. Much of that has to do with having Lebron James. In fairness, when it comes to winning basketball games, regardless of the level of basketball, the players matter more than the coaches.
You are not winning the Kentucky Derby with a donkey.
Which brings me back to Michigan and Nebraska. We have to be in Bizarro World. Comparing the Michigan and Nebraska basketball programs would be like comparing Tombstone Pizza and Totino’s Pizza. You probably only like one of them when you have had too much to drink. The other is one of the best frozen pizza brands in the world.
Yes, Nebraska you are the Totino’s of frozen pizza.
Fortunately since we are in Bizarro World, the Totino’s of frozen pizza hired a coach who was probably the best coaching hire in college basketball this past off-season, while the Tombstone Pizza of college basketball hired a famous alumn who is a respected assistant coach in the NBA.
College basketball is all about recruiting. Unless Juwan Howard can hire a staff with the connections I am not sure he will be successful. Luckily for Nebraska they were able to hire a coach who has already shown he can do just that.
If it was any other year it would have been Nebraska hiring Tyronn Lue but this year it was Michigan.