Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Our (not so) Short List

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A number of good names have been floated for the soon-to-be-vacant Head Coaching job at Columbia.

Anyone who thinks it's too early to be talking about this doesn't understand the speed with which you have to replace head coaches in college football; it is essential for recruitng and team continuity.

Here are a few candidates with their pros and cons:

Tom Gilmore

Tom Gilmore

Pros: plenty of head coaching experience and success at what had been a very struggling program at Holy Cross. Knows the Ivies well as a former assistant at Columbia and Dartmouth. Was an Ivy League MVP Bushnell Cup winner at Penn. (The last Penn alum to coach at Columbia was Lou Little).

Cons: very intense and may clash with a tepid CU administration not used to aggressive coaches. Fans will always wonder if he's just waiting to take the Penn job when Al Bagnoli finally leaves or is struck by lightning.

Greg Toal

Greg Toal

Pros: Has turned losing programs around three times in his illustrious high school coaching career. His current team, Don Bosco, is riding a legendary winning streak right now and is a national household name. Prepares his teams better than anyone else in tough practices. Is familiar with the best Catholic school programs around the country that have consistently sent the best players to the Ivies. Lives nearby and could be ready to jump right in.

Cons: No college head coaching experience. His intensity may rub some players and administrators the wrong way.

Don Brown

Don Brown

Pros: Was a successful head coach at three schools, most recently at UMass. Knows the Ivies after spending some years as an assistant at Dartmouth and was defensive coordinator at Brown in 1996 and 1997. Good defensive strategist who usually molds teams adept at takeaways. Now the D-coordinator at UConn and thus is also close by.

Cons: Not too many that I can see or have heard.

Kevin Kelly

Kevin Kelly

Pros: Current HC at Georgetown has turned the program around this year and produced some eye-popping wins. Knows the Ivies at least as an opposing coach as his Hoyas have played Ivy opponents just about every year since 2006. Was also a an assistant on Dartmouth's 1991 Ivy championship team. Excellent resume with D-I coaching experience at Marshall, Syracuse, and a distinguished tenure at Navy.

Cons: Georgetown's turnaround may only be a one-year thing. Seems to have strong ties to the Maryland-DC area and may need more coaxing than others to come to New York.

Jim Margraff

Jim Margraff

Pros: Has turned Johns Hopkins into a consistent winner. Coached at Penn and under Ray Tellier at Columbia. Was deeply respected by the Lions players when he was here.

Cons: Never been a head coach at the FBS or FCS level. Is currently at his Alma Mater for 22 years and counting and may not be easy to lure back to NYC.

Bill Lazor

Bill Lazor

Pros: Excellent experience as an assistant in college and the pros. Currently the offensive coordinator at a rising University of Virginia team. Knows the Ivies as he was a star QB for the Cornell Big Red in the early 1990's. He then was an assistant at Cornell from 1994 to 2000.

Cons: No head coaching experience.

Aaron Kelton

Aaron Kelton

Pros: Familiar with just about all the current players as he was Columbia DC just two years ago. Has had success as head coach at Williams. Very good personality.

Cons: Not a lot of experience as a head coach. Not everyone is convinced he made a good enough improvement in the CU defense.

Joe Moglia

Joe Moglia

Pros: a uniquely driven and goal-oriented leader who knows the Ivies and now has some head coaching experience. Connections to Wall Street are ideal for Columbia players who often go on to dominate the Street. Might be able to pay his own salary or just take a dollar a year kind of deal.

Cons: An outside the box choice who may be too outside the box. Only one year of HC experience. Hasn't coached at any level in the Ivies in decades.

Jim Tressel

Jim Tressel

Pros: Legendary success at the small college level and at Ohio State. Reportedly looking for redemption after his ouster in Columbus. Could pay his own salary. Recruits would definitely take his calls. Columbia gets millions of dollars of free publicity and intense media interest in a heartbeat.

Cons: It's a crazy outside the box choice. Scandal in his past could sink him. Bollinger would definitely be too afraid to talk to him without a lot of goading.


At Tue Nov 08, 10:41:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes! My vote is for Jim Tressel,like anything else in life, if you make a mistake,you learn from it.The recruits would be off the charts. I think the present team would play like never before,he has that repor with his kids.

At Tue Nov 08, 10:44:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Also, after what's happened at Miami and Penn State, Tressel's "scandal" seems rather tame in every way.

At Tue Nov 08, 10:58:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jim Tressel is a brilliant football mind. He is never going to go back to a D 1 program at this point. But why would he want to caoch in the Ivies? And unless Kraft and Campbell personally recruit him and insist that he be hired over the likely vocal objections of our PC President and Trustees it will never happen. I like what I see of the Georgetown guy. How long did it take us to find Kyle Smith?

At Tue Nov 08, 11:53:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

One point about a new coach and staff: whoever it is will have to do a better job at keeping players healthy and on the field. Brackett has been hurt all year; ditto Garrett and Gerst; ditto some of our best OLs. I don't know why this has happened. Is our strength and conditioning program suspect? Do we scrimmage moe than our opponents? We just seem to have an inordinate number of injuries.

At Wed Nov 09, 03:18:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake, I know that you were likely half-joking but I actually agree with you that the scandal at Penn State will affect forever what constitutes a college football "scandal." The bar has been raised, if you will.

I'm not trying to make light of a sad, sad situation but the only beneficiaries of the Penn State tragedy are guys like Jim Tressel and Mike Leach. Suddenly, what they are accused of seems almost quaint. Putting a player with a concussion in a closet? That's like good, clean fun now.

I can actually see Tressel taking the CU job in the same way that Frank Solich has settled in at Ohio University after being fired from Nebraska in 2003. The key of course is whether Tressel's state of mind is that he loves coaching and wouldn't mind doing it on a smaller stage. He's obviously set financially and, if he's had enough of the FBS limelight, why not?

At Wed Nov 09, 03:40:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tressel lied at OSU and prior to that had ethical issues at Youngston State. Not a great idea.

At Wed Nov 09, 04:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous KSMDAWG3 said...

Tress is not coming to columbia! I am from columbus and its not happening. Would be sweet tho. The guy from UVA is a great coach. I just hope they make a move fast so columbia doesn't go through another season like this... Its ahrd enough going 60 blocks to practice everyday, its $$$$ for kids and its a tough school. Need to bring in an athlete who can change the game...I know they are allowed 1

At Wed Nov 09, 04:17:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Never say never about "the vest".He wants to get back in the good graces of people. Taking on an Ivy League school with a loosing record and turning it's program around would help his image. Couldn't hurt our standings and record either! Jake I say talk to Mr. Kraft and Mr. Campbell and get them to help.Yes he did wrong,and was dishonest. Maybe not on as big of a scale...but haven't we all been dishonest and learned from it?

At Wed Nov 09, 04:28:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would be happy with Gilmore, Kelton or Lazor. Anyone of them would be a great coach at Columbia. However, my prediction is that Kelton will be named the head coach in early December, and that he will lead the Lions to a winning season next year and an Ivy League Championship within three or four years.

At Wed Nov 09, 04:56:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What happened when Gilmore was previously interviewed?

At Wed Nov 09, 05:19:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Harvard interviewed Toal, they would be innovators, trend-setters, risk-takers. Let's give this guy a shot! He has "ins" at every major HS because they wanted to play him. This would be HUGE! Wha if he brought with him 1-2 of his HS All-Americans? If we had that (like Wiley and Wilfork) then call it a day! Toal is the guy! Igf he doesn't come here, we'll see him in Princeton in 2 years and we'll all be saying that we could have had him!

At Wed Nov 09, 05:30:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake, I like all of your choices except Tressel...his ability and the appeal of redemption aside, this is not the time or place to bring in someone tainted by scandal no matter how benign it may appear when contrasted with what's going on today.

I'm partial towards Toal, a great motivator and leader who I believe is definitely ready for the college ranks. His proximity and national reputation are huge factors, and being known as a masterful turnaround coach is something we can't overestimate.
See the amazing article below...


Bill Lazor also stands out in my mind, as a former top Ivy QB he could bring out the best in our talented QBs and our entire offense. I earlier posted in favor of Kelton, who I still like, but any of these guys would give us reason to be optimistic (as if we die-hard Lion fans ever fail to see the silver lining :).

At Wed Nov 09, 05:49:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

FIRST: I am sure the kids who play for us that are reading this are all pumped up to play their final games. You have now brought scandal home and affected the players at CU. Could have left well enough alone and spoke your peace quietly but to post all this on a blog that players have access to is sheer stupidity and effects the outcome of the remaining games. How am i supposed to line up right for NW if Jake (who has sooooo much football experience) tells us he will be fired and keeps talking about our team?
SECOND: please if they do fire NW and the next guy who takes over doesnt get the job done i wish to god i could meet ole Jake in a dark alley so i could give him a friendly reminder of all the things he and the rest of you have posted that have ruined the players and coaches experience at CU.

At Wed Nov 09, 05:56:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The only scandal I can think of is the administration allowing these fine young men to play for such inept coaches for so long. If you want to be angry at Jake, be angry at him for not calling out Norries and Vinny YEARS ago! But I do love the idea that telling these kids that Norries is gone will somehow make it harder for them to play. That's a real joke. These kids know the ship is way off course, (we're 0-8, have you noticed?), and they are overjoyed to know change is coming.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:00:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speculation about who the next coach may be is not helping whatever morale is left on this team. At Cornell is the last practical chance at a win this year. For the seniors, my heart goes out to them, especially those that are back for their 5th year. Underclassmen have at least one more year to achieve victories. No matter what new coach is selected, until these young men achieve the sweet taste of victory again, there will be doubts about whomever is selected. If, and I said if, NW and staff are retained, I would believe there will be larger than normal attrition.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:00:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the guy who wants to meet Jake in a dark alley....

First, you know he spent some time with the Israeli Army, right?

Second, I can promise you that the next coach won't do any worse than 0-8 after 8 games. So I think the odds are with Jake both ways.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:01:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Average week for a college football coach :
7am:review saturday film individually, then watch as a staff
takes about 4 hours to grade every play and every player individually
12:00: staff meeting to discuss saturday game
1:00 meet with players and review game film making corrections
4:00 players have short practice focusing on corrections and introduction of next opponent
6:00 coaches begin breakdown and tendencies of next opponent
MAYBE out at midnight if lucky

MONDAY: players day off
coaches in at 7
continue breakdown of opponent and gameplan 1st and 10, 2nd downs
1:00 unit meetings with head coach to discuss gameplan
3:00 begin preparing cards, scripts, and installation for next days practice.
watch more film
Maybe done at 10pm

if you practice in the am:
coaches in at 5:00am
meetings with players at 7am
on the field by 8:15
off the field by 9:45 or 10:00
11:00 begin gameplanning redzone, tight red zone, 3rd down
4:00 meet with players to watch the morning film and make corrections.
6:00 begin to card and script next days practice
maybe done by 9pm

repeat tuesday times focusing on 2 minute, 4 minute, trick plays, and odd situations and tendencies.

Same times as tues

if home: recruit from 7am locally to noon
1pm staff meeting
4:00 walkthru
6pm: unit meetings
8:00pm team meeting.

saturday gameday
Notice something?
no family
no social life
7 days a week, 13-18 hours a day for 3 months....minimal pay
AND that doesnt take into account all the typing, cutting and editing of the film, breaking down the next opponent, wristbands, checking classes to make sure kids are going, making recruiting calls, or anything else a coach does every single day.

SOOOOO when you geniuses get together try spending a day in our shoes so you really have a clue what goes on? By the way i am not a member of the columbia staff but i have coached college football for 20 years and hate when the suit and ties talk about something they dont have a clue about.
AND jake i wasnt kidding about the dark alley if the next coach falls on his face.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:03:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

how do u stop the weakside power play does anybody know?

At Wed Nov 09, 06:07:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Dark Alley,
You are way out of line. We have stated our opinions, disagreed, but NEVER stepped over the line. Why wait for a dark alley? If this occurs and you are so tough, do it at midfield. We will be the ones backing Jake because he is not anonymous.
Jake, if there is ever a time to censor postings, threatening physical harm is the time.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:07:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait, wait, wait... You're saying that coaches work hard and have long hours? I'm shocked!

Are you kidding?

The street sweeper I see in Times Square everyday works hard too. Let's pay him $200K.

This is a results-based profession. I don't care how hard you work, you don't produce after a fair amount of time, (6 years is plenty), then you're out.

And ask any of the players if they expect to get great jobs and salaries after graduation if they don't pass their Series 7 or execute bad trades all day. They know what it's all about and are apparently more adult and realistic than you.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:11:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

old saying about walking a mile in a mans shoes, all of you think you know how to be football coaches but you never have. I have never worked on wall street, done trades, or been a corporate guy. I do not EVER make comments regarding those fields of which i have never worked in. YOU guys on the other hand feel its perfectly fine to bash a guy in a profession you have no experience in. Like i said "walk a mile in a mans shoes". Thats being honorable and professional AKA an adult. Try it sometimes.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:13:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

not physical harm mind you that would simply exacerbate the situation. A friendly discussion into how our resident Vince Lombardi Jake is so well versed in coaching, thats all.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:14:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anybody know how do stop the triple option from a 3-4 defense?

At Wed Nov 09, 06:15:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

you stepped over the line when you started to bash a man and his character in front of the young student athletes who he needs to perform for him every day.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:18:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So only those that have been traders criticized Madoff, Milliken, and the banks. Since none of us have never been in alot of different shoes, I should be quiet about a bad waiter, a rude clerk, a taxi driver. I can only criticize my profession. Interesting since a significant number of people cticize my profession who are not an attorney. I guess my profession's trust ratings will skyrocket now. Thanks for the tip.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:25:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the deal: the football program is not profitable. Everything these coaches make is from us. Us being the donors, the fans, etc. So when the coaches fail, you're damn right it's our right to criticize them whether we've ever been players, coaches, or ticket-takers or not.
This group's record is 16-42!!!! It has never had a winning record!! I'm sick of losing and even more sick of the mentality that we don't even have the RIGHT to expect more! Listen, THAT'S the reason why we lose. We don't demand better. Well, here comes Jake's blog and suddenly everyone, especially the embarrassed administration, sees that we DO demand better. And they send some troll to come on here and threaten people. Nice try. Won't work.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:29:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i criticize a waiter or waitress for a poor job, and if i do it i do it in a private not a public setting. I also make sure when i correct this person i correct what is wrong, not their character (which some of you have taken uncalled for shots at NW). If you want to take a shot at a guy be a man and do it in person. Your criticisms here about his coaching style, decisions regarding the stupid parkas, whether or not he is a man of character (yes i did see that post), or any of the other complaining you all do is wrong unless you want to take it up with the man (which i doubt any have the courage to). I am now finding out why the ivy league has been called the "tennis shoe" league or the "country club" league. I expected men from such a distinguished intitution to have better morals and not whine like some b-tch.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:30:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where has NW's character been bashed in the actual body, not the comments, on Jake's blog? It hasn't happened, unless you consider it character assassination to remind people that 16-42 is his record. If that's the case, you better be ready to fight every sports page editor in America who publishes our W-L.
But you know what? I wouldn't poke the bear here. As a parent of a former player I have informed Jake of MANY character flaws in NW and Vinny that border on criminal behavior. He never went public with it and I'm not angry at him for that, but sometimes I wish he had. So, go ahead and keep pushing because you soon might see some stuff here that you think only the players know about and won't talk about, but you'd be wrong.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:31:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

to anonymous: i am no troll and i could care less about the administration. I do care about the players and anyone who questions another mans character. I was a part of columbia football for 4 years and saw how the administration and even the faculty treated us and the obstacles they laid in our path. I was always appreciative of the alumni support. But i do not appreciate what you are doing to these players by posting some of your comments.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The players are THANKING us for our comments!!! And some of the recent graduates are asking: "what took you so long???"

We are doing the players a big favor here, face it.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:35:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

the article regarding a coaches work week was not posted to criticize but to inform all of you actually what goes on. Several here have said they dont understand the time a player or coach spends and how there is no need for such odd hours. Well guess what everybody in major college football does it that way, so if you want to be a real football program and not a country club one then get on board.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:36:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We all have different opinions and we travel different roads to get to the same final destination, that being, turn Columbia Football into a wininng program. But... to want to meet Jake in a dark alley? Very Classless and immature, to say the least.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:36:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i make u a deal u tell me the kids thanking you for it (i am sure they are not starters or even in the 2 deep and probably have higher unrealistic expectations that mommy and daddy have preprogrammed in their heads) and i will reveal myself hows that for compromise.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:39:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anonymous you are right, i have let my temper and passion for football and coaching get the best of me. I do apologize to Jake and the rest of the bloggers for an unprofessional remark regarding the alley. However i do know if it were me that was being bashed on a blog i might have to have words with somebody. ANY man would.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:41:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

i also want columbia football to succeed for the kids, besides my own support of the anybody who is an underdog and my passion to prove those here wrong.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:42:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Thanks for all support here guys, but for the record, I never FOUGHT with the Israeli army... just some volunteering at some bases. Doesn't count.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:44:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish this blog had existed in the 70's and 80's. I know, no blogs existed then... but think what the administration would have at least been forced to defend with a public forum challenging it on hiring and keeping Navarro or Naso, etc. How about what Jake would have written about the Allen Pavillion etc? I now feel at least a little confident that the powers that be will be at least a litte worried about getting criticized here if they do their usual cruddy job of hiring a coach.

At Wed Nov 09, 06:46:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Mr. "meet Jake in a dark alley...". I'll be right next to Jake and I'll be glad to meet you first, and then you can introduce yourself to Jake.

Greg Abbruzzese CC '91

At Wed Nov 09, 07:07:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the errant hormone-driven poster who claims character assassination and/or desires a pugilstic confrontation with Jake -- on the contrary, the great majority of posters here have taken pains to always say something about Norries being a "nice guy" and a "fine gentleman," his abysmal record notwithstanding. Now we learn from a player's parent that perhaps we've been too generous in that regard. More than anything else, the fact that Wilson has kept his OC aboard despite years of complaints from alums and players backed up by dismal game-time performance especially in the crucial 3rd quarter, is testimony to his failure as a head coach. 'Nuff said, let's get to the new era.

At Wed Nov 09, 07:12:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have difficulty believing that any Columbia football player is upset by criticism of the coaching staff on this blog. Even without this blog, the players would surely be aware that the team is 0-8 and therefore the coaches are in jeopardy of losing their jobs. While no one is happy about that, the fact is that except in the most etraordinary of circumstances, any Director of Athletics, anywhere, has no choice but to replace any coach with an 0-8 record, in his sixth year, in any sport, whether or not there is any criticism of the coaches in a public forum.

At Wed Nov 09, 07:18:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with the last poster. There has been no character assassination at all on this blog. Everyone has praised Coach Wilson as a person, but the results on the football field are undeniable. Ask this question: Would any other Ivy League School put up with an 0-8 record from a coach in his sixth year? Of course not.

At Wed Nov 09, 07:30:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How do you criticize a waiter in private, take him out for a meal?
Actually, I would do it "privately," in a low voice at my table. Just as we have criticized Coach Wilson privately...this is a private blog for Columbia football fans, not the Times or the AP.
And it's a lie that anyone has criticized his character. We've criticized his W-L and that's what he should be judged on. I ccouldn't criticize his character because I don't know him. If you want to arrange a meeting, I'll be glad to tell him face-to-face "I have nothing against you personally, you're probably a swell person, but your W-L is atrocious so you have to go.'
The poster who's a coach is all miffed brcause coaches work hard.
So do we, friend. At least I have. I often had to work outdoors in stifling, heat, driving rain, cold even snow like the other week. And my superiors still expected me to do my job well, with little or no thanks, and for much, much less money than Wilson makes. Wilson just doesn't win. We fans not only work hard in our jobs but as fans too, absorbing decades of disappointment but still supporting the team emotionally and financially.
So your reproach is very unfair, Coach poster. Yeah, tell us about it. That's how jobs are.
I sincerely wish Wilson well and hope he wins elsewhere, but he didn't get it done here.

At Wed Nov 09, 08:02:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger cathar said...

Vague claims re "criminal behavior" from Norries and Marino? Threats to settle things in a dark alley? Jake acting absolutely silly with his handy-dandy, just-happened-to-have-it-in-his-back-pocket list of potential coaches? And then all th4 stuff about the parkas?

It is getting very nasty here. Especially the threats about violence both towards Jake and from his, uh, "supporters." With friends like these, Jake...(Really, too, how many of us have been in anything approaching a genuine fistfight since early on in high school? So come on, guys, sound and act like adults.)

And stop the dreaming about Greg Toal. From all reports he's very happy at Don Bosco, especially given its plans to emphasize "resident" students (as per a traditional type of boarding school) which will give him the degree of absolute control over his players' lives he seems to want, and supposedly he's turned down several college coaching offers in the past which would pay considerably better.

Also, would you really want potential recruits reading this blog the last few weeks? Good grief but I hope not.

At Wed Nov 09, 08:06:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unless and until Bollinger and the trustees demand excellence we will repeat the cycle of dashed hopes. I simply do not understand why they do not understand the value of institutional pride. And I am not happy with our AD, who In my humble opinion is clueless when it comes to the major men's sports, especially football. As far as Norries Wilson is concerned, I am sorry that the wheels fell off this year. I honestly believe that it began with the interception at the end of the first half of the Fordham game. Until that moment I thought we had a tough, seasoned team. But we never showed up in the third quarter. Who said that the first five minutes of the third quarter are the most critical segment of any football game? Perhaps Lou Holtzman. And we have consistently laid an egg in the third quarter. What does that tell you? What it tells me is that we have been out coached. If we had played a good third quarter consistently this season does anybody doubt that we would have been above 500? I don't. So it is time to move on, hopefully with a sense of purpose from Bollinger on down. And one final point. Norries was actually our third choice. Two other candidates turned down the position. I have no idea who they were, but my guess is that the lukewarm institutional commitment had something to do with it.

At Wed Nov 09, 08:16:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I suspect that the vast majority of posters on this blog, including myself, are former Columbia athletes. However, I see no reason whatsoever why someone who has not competed in athletics at Columiba, or more particularly, in football, should be barred or berated for making comments on this blog. All in all, I would say that Jake's Blog has a much higher percentage of persons knoweledgable about football than the typical sports blog. And, of course, there is no greater informational source about Columbia football than this forum. If you want to know anything about Columbia Football, "Roar Lions Roar" is the place to be. Thank you, Jake, for all your hard work and dedication to Columbia Football.

At Wed Nov 09, 08:37:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

President Bollinger is smart enough to know that he must do something dramatic very soon to avoid being stamped with a legacy of ineptitude in his administration of Columbia Athletics. The program for Excellence in Athletics has been a failure except for raising funds for the Campbell Athletic Center. No new indoor recreational facility on campus and no major renovations to the existing gym. The Campbell Athletic Center is a wonderful addition to the Baker Field Athletic Complex, but Bill Campbell deserves the credit for the Athletic Center, not Bollinger. If President Bollinger were serious about changing his legacy, he needs to take action immediately (a) to build a new gym, or (b) significantly improve the existing gym, as well as (c) restore South Field to its original use as an athletic field for undergraduates. As for Dr. Murphy, I think she is a wonderfully competent administrator with smarts and vision. I just wish she had the courage to stand up to Bollinger and demand that he do something immediately to significantly improve the athletic facilities on campus.

At Wed Nov 09, 09:41:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You reference Virginia's OC as a potential candidate for Columbia. I think UVA might indeed have a potential HC candidate for the Lions, but it's not their OC. I'd go with a proven entity like Jim Reid, UVA's DC who was a HC previously at UMass and Richmond (he's also been an assistant in the NFL with the Dolphins). His players at both Umass and Richmond would run through a brick wall for this guy (I personally know some of his football alums who would wholeheartedly agree with this statement). Reid was instrumental in turning around a moribund Richmond program which eventually yielded an FCS national championship under former Spider, and now current UVA HC, Mike London. This guy can recruit as well - he brought in breakout players like Tim Hightower to Richmond. Jim Reid is a man of exceptional integrity, character and enthusiasm. Columbia would certianly benefit from his talents and recruiting know-how.

At Wed Nov 09, 09:55:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm for Tressel! He'll bring our boys parkas, heated mittens, heated benches, blow heaters, cash, girls, tatooes,cars, parkas, more cash, more cars, more tatooes, more parkas, more cash, championship rings!, tatooes, and more girls! Boys will love him!

Not Joe Paterno! He went to Brown!! oops! but true!

This blog needs to lighten up today!Right Cathar???

At Wed Nov 09, 10:11:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've read much worse about coaches on the ESPN and other major media sports blogs. If a person wants to coach at the college level and above, he has to be thick skinned about criticism especially in this age of social media. Every coach knows that most fans don't have a clue why a particular decision is made during the game. But that's the nature of the beast, and why winning is so important to job security. It really cuts both ways (the coach at LSU had his football IQ questioned because of his play calling but the team keeps winning and his contract keep getting extended).

At Wed Nov 09, 10:16:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

May I suggest a simple standard for any candidate to be on the list : If you had a choice between your candidate and the guy you consider to be the best coach in the Ivy League (say Bagnoli or Murphy), would you pick your candidate? If not, why even suggest him? If the Lions are going to overcome what appear to be chronic recruiting problems, the new coach must coach the pants off the other Ivy coaches in all respects other than recruiting (fundamentals, game preparation, game plan, etc.). This shouldn't be so difficult. The Ivy coaching ranks are not exactly littered with football masterminds.

Unfortunately, with the exception of Tressel, the guys on the list do not meet this standard. They all (including even Toal) have perfectly respectable, "Ivy standard" resumes and with any one of them, the Lions could continue to "lose with dignity" (with an upset victory over Harvard or Penn every generation).

Tressel is The Man.

Don't worry about Tressel's ethical baggage. Under the new Penn State Shower Room Sodomy standard, TattooGate looks quaint. A little "Everyone deserves a second chance"/"redemptive power of sport" bullshit chould cover it.

Tressel is The Man.

At Wed Nov 09, 10:25:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Mitch '68 said...

I love this blog and I believe most of the comments are well-intended, thoughtful, and respectful of everyone concerned. But I find myself annoyed when childish comments about fighting in an alley are posted by a nameless individual who does manage to include his supposed twenty years' experience as a coach at an unnamed college.

I would like to respectfully suggest that contributors have the balls to sign their messages, especially when they threaten and/or brag in the text. If you want to make a fool of yourself, at least identify yourself as well. Otherwise keep quiet and don't make a fool of yourself.

Finally one need not be a football player or coach to qualify as a commentator or even a critic of the football program. This is obvious.

I feel compelled to add, as I have felt in several of my posts, that I am a former CU athlete and former high school head football coach. I sent players to Princeton and Yale, and I hope that if I get back into coaching -- maybe in my 80s? -- I will in good conscience be able to recommend the Columbia football program as well. May that day come quickly!

Mitch Sisskind '68CC

At Wed Nov 09, 10:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

Kelly was 9-45 in his first five years at Georgetown, and 0-11 in 2009. Wilson has done better. Why would you think Kelly is better? And if Georgetown stuck with Kelly after an 0-11 season and turned into a winner, that supports doing the same with Wilson.
As for the others, why would they want to take a pay cut to come to Columbia? Read Taylor Branch's article in Atlantic Monthly. The SEC's top assistants average $700K per year. What do you think coordinators in the other BCS conferences make? Would they give up their current pay and the chance at a multi-million dollar FBS head coaching job to take on the CU job?
Also, Wilson was a very successful coordinator at UConn, yet you continually (unfairly) denigrate his football acumen. Now you want another coordinator from UConn?
Guys just give it a rest. We're all unhappy about the record, but you're not making any sense. In fact, your flailing around about coaches, which is just a horrible thing to do to the program in midseason -- undermining both the players and the coaches -- illustrates why keeping Wilson may be the best bet Columbia has right now. Support the team -- players AND coaches -- through the end of the season. Then let the athletic department do its post mortem and figure out exactly what went wrong this year. Only then will the most effective way to fix the problem become apparent. Panicking and acting on a soup of assumption and innuendo is the way to screw things up worse. Is that how you guys make decisions in your business lives? I hope not!

At Wed Nov 09, 10:45:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

A bit of history here ... Did you know that Marv Levy was interviewed for the Columbia HC job in the late sixties? He didn't make the cut.

At Wed Nov 09, 01:53:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh. come on, Cathar, you're just rehashing now, plus your new tidbit "Stop dreaming about Toal." I'm not dreaming about Toal or anyone. It's the job of our Administration to find and hire the very best person available for the HC position. It may very well be someone who is not on Jake's list at all. Whether it's a familiar name or an unknown one, we want the best that's out there. It's no longer acceptable to go cheap. And since you're still carping about every complaint including "parka-gate" I'd like to contribute to the purchase of two top-line parkas, with fur hoods plus gloves, so Cathar and ex-coach Wilson can watch the next snow game together and see the new Columbia Lions knock the stuffimg out of their opponent.

At Wed Nov 09, 07:54:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those are good points, Leon L., but what exactly do you mean by a post-mortem at the season by the Columbia Athletic Department. Everyone involved with the football program at Columbia knows what went wrong this season and, in general, so why do a post-mortem. Surely you are not suggesting that Dr. Murphy and the many knowledgable Columbia Football Alums, Fans, Supporters, and, most importantly, the players themselves do not already know what the problems are. Finally, keep in mind, that it is essential that a new head football coach be in place by mid-December if that person is going to be able to successfully recruit a very strong incoming class.

At Wed Nov 09, 08:03:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Georgetown's success this past season was no surprise as it has stepped up its recruiting in recent years. However, I'm uncertain what exactly Georgetown did and whether Columbia can or cannot emulate its success. I thank Leon L. for noting the dramatic improvement in Kelly's record. Very interesting and startling. What happened? May I ask Leon L, or anyone else who knows, exactly what Georgetown did to turn around its program this year?

At Wed Nov 09, 08:07:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Leon L: So what happened at Georgetown, my man? Divine interventation? Bolt of Light? New Offensive Coordinator? Kelly took a mail order course? Seriously, if you know share the information with us. Thanks.

At Wed Nov 09, 09:17:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Much talk over these past few days about the concern for the incoming recruits..Please don't forget about the already recuruited freshman, sophomore and junior class that have already been recruited. Differing sources confirming a new coaching staff or not...what ever the decision, it needs to be made as soon after the season as possible! To be fair to everyone I hope the management moves forward one way or another in a respectable time line. These boys all came to school as dedicated football players who wanted a great education. That's why they chose Columbia. Many turned down scholarships elseswhere but they chose Columbia for a reason. They wanted to play. They were all commited and have remained that way throughout the year whether they started or not. Can you imagine what it's like to be them? They give 100% everyday, take what ever is given to them and then have no voice to express how they feel. Of course it's about winning but it's also about being treated with respect. Bottom line- the university has a decision to make and it should be made soon in order to be fair to these boys. Why? because they have a decision to make as well. I hope the school is listening or there's a good chance the coaches will be recruiting a much larger freshman class than normal.

At Wed Nov 09, 10:00:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Bill Flick '87 said...

Quite a thread going on here.

I graduated in 1987. in 25 years it seems as if nothing has changed. The players are mad and frustrated, the coaches are mad and frustrated, the AD is mad and frustrated, the alumni are mad and frustrated, the parents are mad and frustrated. And we just keep losing and losing....

Am I missing anyone? I think I am.

Blame the President, school, and administration first and foremost. Murphy is sharp and my feeling is any ineptitude you sense from her should probably be more attributed to inconsistent or lacking of support from Bollinger. Same with Norries, it seems like we have been going in a different direction ever since the disappointing losses to Penn and Dartmouth last year and we can't get our mojo back. Norries had something working and he lost it. He deserves some blame and I greatly respect that he assumes that but this school and athletics has been a mess for decades, it is not a coincidence.

couple other comments:

A. I believe I remember someone saying that Priore was a candidate and pulled out last time. My guess is the more he went through the interview process here the more he realized how different the level of "support" was going to be as opposed to Penn.

B. I love the idea of thinking out of the box but I don't like the idea of hiring a HS coach coach here if he has no college experience. In fact, he would need experience at an Ivy Caliber school, too, in order to have a chance at success here. Just so much more than recruiting, x's and o's at this level of school and football. Toal might be a college coaching star one day but whereas he might excel elsewhere, he would probably be ruined here before he got the chance to succeed. Coaching at CU is not for the inexperienced or weak of heart.

C. I have no info on this but I just have to believe Murphy applied to Army because she has grown tired of the lack of institutional support from CU.

D. There will be attrition regardless: There will be kids who assume they have no shot with this staff and they will quit football. If a new coach comes in, many of the Seniors will assume they have no shot with the new regime and/or are simply so tired of the school's second class approach to football and they will quit, too.

E. Many of you who have been associated with the school within the past 5 years or so may think that what you have or are going through is different and that we don't understand. The stories may be different but it's been groundhog day here for me since 1983 and I am sure for others since the 50's and 60's.

F. I had the chance to speak with a Trustee during last year's HC, this was back when we were mostly still optimistic that we were headed in the right direction. I commented to the Trustee how great it was that finally CU saw the light and were committed to athletic success. So I asked this person if they also thought we were going to be a real player in Ivy football and basketball going forward. I was surprised when the answer I got, and I am paraphrasing, was basically: "yeah, we'll be competitive but the school is still not going to try and compete with Harvard and Penn".

G. Is Tellier's legacy that much different than Norries'? He coached for 6 years after his 8-2 season and we got progressively worse each year thereafter. Did he suddenly forget how to be a winning coach? It's so much more than the coach!

H. If we win, we will get recruits.

I. 30 years ago when I was choosing a college my father told me flat out: "If you go to Columbia you will lose all the time and the school won't care. You and the other football players will feel all alone. If any of my kids are fortunate enough to have a chance to be an athlete at Columbia I would tell them the same thing.

Welcome to Groundhog Day, Columbia style.


At Wed Nov 09, 10:03:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Bill Flick '87 said...

great post at 6:17 am

How sad that CU parents have been feeling that way for 60+ years


At Wed Nov 09, 10:33:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Enough with the "woe for me" attitude! Hey, I played through "The Streak" and guess what, if I had to do it all over again, I would do nothing differently! Stop complaining about the past 30 years and who did what, when... Start now and support these kids. One passing Trustee comment means nothing is not an indictment against football and basketball for goodness sakes. We win in baseball, tennis, and track/fiels/X-Country, and they have the same facilities and "hardships". Guess what? Life isn't easy, grow up! We will win in spite of all that. And WHY does everyone cry about things we don't have? Look at what you DO have, appreciate it, grow with it, and win! If not, don't have your children apply, transfer, and good luck somewhere else! We didn't need you in the first place. I only want kids who WANT to be here!

At Wed Nov 09, 11:01:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous John Alex '89 said...

Hmmm. Seems like the boil that has been CU football's long losing tradition is coming to a head. Probably a cathartic thing (not cathar). Better late than never in my opinion. Can you imagine Penn State's blog for some perspective?

Thank you Flicker and Mitch for some sanity with a name.

For the record, Abba, I could take you AND Jake on my deathbed.


At Wed Nov 09, 11:05:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone who wants to get some historical perspective of the Lion's frustrations, google "The Lions Go Out like Lambs" (Sports Illustrated Dec. 1, 1986), and "The Mess at Columbia" (NY Times Dec. 2, 1988). Links don't always show up in the comments, but I'll give it a try again: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1065589/index.htm and http://www.nytimes.com/1988/12/02/sports/sports-of-the-times-the-mess-at-columbia.html?src=pm

At Wed Nov 09, 11:08:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Mitch '68 said...

Item "I" in Bill Flick's 7:00 post above states the fundamental problem in CU football:

'30 years ago when I was choosing a college my father told me flat out: "If you go to Columbia you will lose all the time and the school won't care. You and the other football players will feel all alone."'

This is exactly the truth. It is exactly what I had to tell my players when I was a coach and some were recruited by Bill Campbell's staff.

Sometimes I ask myself why I read this blog every day and try to contribute often as well. It's because my experience with CU sports was exactly as described in the quote above, and to some extent I'm still affected by it. I would really like to help today's students avoid that, so I hope the blog gets read by people of influence. I could never have been a star player, but the (accurate) feeling that "the school doesn't care" was felt even by the stars of my era, and I'm sure that's still true today. This has got to change in order for football to improve at CU, in won-lost and in every other respect.

Mitch Sisskind '68 CC

At Wed Nov 09, 11:16:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the 6:17 poster, that is the story in a nut shell. The only hope I have for the freshmen, soph., and juniors is that hopefully the senior players that are graduating will have the courage to speak up and give the administration an earful as to how their season has been. What actually goes on at practice, in the locker room etc. The lower classmen won't speak out of fear, and they want to continue to play. I know many kids are holding something back and will not say one negative thing about the coaches. I also know kids that are very unhappy. Thank goodness the team is so close and have made great friendships. These kids are torn, they want the great education that Columbia has to offer, but at the same time they love football. I wonder how many of them will stay if changes are not made.My plea to the President and the Trustees, is to give them top priority when and if a new coaching staff is hired.Give them the opportunity to play with a winning coach,who can turn things around,one who will inspire, and give them back their love for the game.

At Wed Nov 09, 11:18:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Bill Flick is missing the perhaps too subtle point of this blog.

We all KNOW the admin is the ultimate problem. Norries is the fruit of their poison tree.

The point here is to make this blog a weapon against these slackers who don't give our kids the best fair shake.

Woe to the A.D. and Bollinger if they don't hire the best candidate possible for this job. And woe to them if they DARE to ask me or anyone else for another dime for athletics if they don't fix this!

At Wed Nov 09, 11:23:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake, you forgot Joe Paterno. It looks like he will be available next year. He's a winner! He knows the Ivy League!

At Wed Nov 09, 11:42:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At Thu Nov 10, 12:47:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Bill Flick '87 said...

to 8:18

Forgive my thick head, but I assume you are referring to the slackers running Columbia, right?

If things remain status quo and Columbia does not make football a priority we will never hire the best candidate. The best candidate will either not apply or they will pull out of the process once they realize they won't get the support they need here.

to 7:33:

I assume we knew/know each other?

Our football experience was really bad and disappointing, I think you would agree. And I also agree the overall Columbia experience and the friendships I made and maintain to this day (mostly football players) is remarkable. Regardless of the football, I would still choose Columbia.

As Mitch alluded, I just think a CU education, NYC, AND a positive football experience would be something no other Ivy could compete with and I wish Columbia would realize that.


At Thu Nov 10, 01:29:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting comment by a poster who said that next year's senior class would be the one most adversely affected by a head coaching change. Based upon what I saw happen with the Columbia Men's Basketball Team that was definitely not the case. Following the coaching change all five seniors improved their game dramaticaly under the Smith-Hartman coaching staff and thrived throughout their senior year which ended with Columbia having a winning season. Smith changed the face of a losing program overnight and the senior class went out as winners. If any of the seniors had any regrets, it was that a coaching change was not made sooner.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tue Nov 08, 03:01:00 PM PST poster you seem great at making things up. Some of that schedule is true, but, for the most part not even close to reality. For one I am pretty sure they practice later in the day which has always been an issue with engineering students.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:35:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I sneak in a comment that I believe that Columbia will defeat Cornell this Saturday? We have improved significantly as a football team the last two weeks, particularly in the line play. And Mistretta, Waller, Schuster and Morand, amongst others, have played very well on defense.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:38:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is a little bit of reality. Most of the current players don't even know about this blog and those that do for the most part never read it. If you ask them they could care less what anyone is writing about the team. Sorry Jake.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:40:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

Because of his record this year, you say Georgetown's Kelly is a good coach (I haven't seen a Georgetown game in many years so I have no idea how they play). He went 0-11 two years ago. So good coaches can have a 0-fer season, and Georgetown looks smart for not firing him in 2009.
I haven't seen a valid factual account here of bad coaching on the part of the CU staff. Nor a factual account of coaching abuse; of players' unhappiness with the coaches. I have seen a mention of NW's weight, however, and that is emblematic of much, but not all, of the posts about NW.
CU's coaches are guys with distinguished backgrounds who know how to coach. We have ex-OC's from UConn, Bucknell, Holy Cross, Fordham, Central Conn, Wagner, Colgate, Coast Guard and Tufts on the staff. I doubt they are withholding their expertise from the players. More likely, they have been watching their players in spring football, preseason, weekly practices, games, and game and practice film, studying the players' abilities, skills and implementation of coaching. They have a far better sense than we of what might work with the players they have this season, not to mention what works against the defenses they study week in and week out. The situation has been worsened by injuries, especially in the skilled positions and line on offense. To paraphrase a Yalie, you play with the team you have on a given Saturday, not the team you wish you had.
Many here have been quick to attack the coaches on matters that are not coaching issues, and others that are likely not coaching issues. Some of it, and Jake himself is guilty here, is from superficial analysis of game play that misses several layers of tactical and strategic thought.
The HC is responsible for the ultimate record, but that does not mean it is his fault. That's one of the problems with holding the seat where the buck stops. In college sports, it's worse. Believe it or not, sometimes 19 and 20 year old kids do not do what they are instructed to do. Otherwise, everyone at CU would be an A+ student and the school orchestra would be playing at Lincoln Center.
This season is plainly anomolous. The coaches already had proved they are better than the record, and the players appear to be better than it. Nonetheless, the team has been competitive against everyone but Albany and Dartmouth. Even after the Dartmouth game, where they plainly did not come to play (a player's responsibility, in my experience) they played Yale and Harvard tough.
So, as an educated and open minded observor (of more than 140 Columbia football games, I might add, mostly painfully), I can say without a doubt that I do not know what this year's problem is, and that I cannot know merely from watching the games. Kelly rebounded from an 0-11 season 2 years ago to this year's 7-2. Frank Navarro left CU to take a school that had not had a winning season in ten years to the national championship semifinal. Sometimes teams that are well-coached underperform or are undermanned.
This isn't the athletics department or university commitment of 20 or 30 years ago. It may have a way to go, but it has come a long way. One can say the same about the coaching staff, too. Until people with access to information that we don't have, do a thorough review, I don't think anyone can say that a coaching change is necessary or even advisable.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:41:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think Columbia will blow Cornell out of the water this week.

With regard to injuries that is part of the game and is not something you can blame on the coaches. It is insult to the players that get hurt to even suggest that.

At Thu Nov 10, 01:57:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon, I cannot believe you are for real! I almost feel like you are an outsider trying to stir up the pot...TROUBLE. In referance to your quote,that you haven't seen a valid factual act here of bad coaching or coaching abuse or players unhappiness with the coaches. Do you have a son on the team? How many of the team members have you spoken to ? Do you really know any of them? Have you read any of the previous posts? And for the record, I have never seen anything referring to NW weight. You are unbelievable, not to mention clueless!!!!

At Thu Nov 10, 03:47:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

After reading Leons post i now have come to the conclusion that he maybe the smartest man in the world compared to what everyone else has said. Leon thanks for the post you reminded some of the jackasses on here how little they actually know.

At Thu Nov 10, 06:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems that there are four groups in this thread :

Group One consists of those who think that the Lions can never have a successful program and that the best you can hope for is to move from despair to some sort of Zen-like acceptance.

Group Two consists of those who think that the Lions can succeed but that it will require some kind of football "Great Awakening" to sweep the ranks of the administration. These guys are essentially members of Group One who haven't achieved that Zen acceptance thing yet.

Group Three consists of those who think that college coaching is more complicated than cold fusion and that even a 0-10 record requires a Herculean effort. These are the guys who want to keep Wilson indefinitely. I assume that these guys are employees of the Athletic Department; otherwise, there must be some sort of bizarre cult out there that worships bad football.

Group Four consists of people who think that Columbia's coaching savior will be found somewhere in the backwaters of college football, i.e., in the "little pond" world of Ivy League/New England football. This guys apparently believe that if you are looking for a coaching star, you should hang around outside the locker room at Holy Cross and Georgetown. Yeah, and if I'm looking for someone to design a particle accelerator, I should be stalking the faculty at San Jacinto Junior College.

The problem with all four groups is that they don't provide any hope, even false hope, for next year. I simply can't work up any enthusiasm whatsoever over the prospect of yet another "Some Guy from New England with a Whistle".

Before dismissing Jim Tressel, Houston Nutt (just fired by Ole Miss) and all the other "outside the box" cast-offs and mediocrities from the "real" football world, you should take a look "inside" the Columbia box. It's damn depressing.

At Thu Nov 10, 06:15:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I guess anyone who doesnt win isnt a REAL football coach.
Paul Pasqualoni reigned at Syracuse for years, fired after winning a bowl game, i guess he wasnt a real coach either? Or acording to some geniuses he must have been a bad coach. Funny when you win everybody thinks you are a genius, and then after awhile if you lose they forget you have ever coached a day of football before that time. Idiots here...

At Thu Nov 10, 07:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

10:57, guess you missed this post:

I think Columbia should get a coach who is physically fit--like Harvard's Tim Murphy. Murphy was a LB in college, and he looks like he can run 5 miles in a jiffy. Someone trim and fit gives the impression that the person is disciplined and hardworking. I am not saying that N. Wilson is lazy or undisciplined or that Chris Christie cannot be an excellent US president. I am just saying that Columbia needs a coach who looks like he can run 5 miles.
Mon Nov 07, 01:22:00 PM PST"

As for the lack of facts around here, reread the posts. You'll find many conclusions, but few facts. And I don't consider yelling at players bad coaching. In fact, in the midst of an 0-8 season with the players blocking and tackling as poorly as they have, I would fault the coaches for not yelling a bit. Have the players told you they want new coaches? Tell us what they said -- but not their names. You might even change my mind and the other guys' who disagree with you. But, so far, we haven't had that here. Just bald statements that the coaches have lost the players, and there will be terrible attrition, etc., even though the team's play against Yale and Harvard suggests the opposite. And rants about player mistakes that plainly were not caused by the coaches. Did you count the number of false starts by Harvard on Saturday? I stopped counting at 5, including 2 or 3 in a row. Does that make Murphy a bad coach? But the false starts against Penn were said to be Wilson's fault. They weren't. That's the kind of thing I'm talking about.

I do note, though, that against Harvard, the O-line opened up more holes for the backs than they had in all the prior games combined against a very good D-line. They did some good work, and without Adams too. Keep it up against Cornell and limit Matthews' time on the field.

At Thu Nov 10, 08:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Somebody posted that Leon L. really knew what he was talking about and the rest of us were idiots. I went back and read all of Leon's famous epistle because I couldn't get through it the first time. Here's his brilliant message--It's harmful to the program to criticize during the season!
Thanks for the biggest load of nonsense I've ever heard (that goes for Leon's fan, too.)
It's counter-productive to criticize a program in November that's 0-8? Like it's going to
bother us against our final two opponents, Stanford and LSU? Might hurt someone's feelings as Columbia prepares for a major bowl game?
This is the same old junk we've heard for almost 60 years and that's the reason we've been losing for the past 60 years. This is the Ivy League, pal, and we never have a prayer of winning even here. Wake up! Or is Leon L. really Lee Bollinger? What happened to Bollinger's pledge to eliminate our "culture of losing"?
His words, not mine.

At Thu Nov 10, 08:47:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon, with all due respect, you did not answer my question how Kelly/Georgetown turned it around this year. You complain that the bloggers on Jake's blog lack sufficient facts to criticize the obvious. Yet you are drawing comparisons with another football program that was successful this year and yet you apparently know nothing factual about the Georgetown program. Second chance: What did Kelly/Georgetown do to turnaround the Georgetown Football program this year?

At Thu Nov 10, 09:06:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon, that's a great idea to make decisions based upon facts rather than feelings, attitudes and opinions. Unfortunately, Leon, that's not the way the real world works today. And it is certainly not the Columbia way, particularly in athletics. When it comes to Columbia athletics, there is an institutional bias against athletics which is reflected in stupid political decisions such as the sale of land at Baker Field to a local hospital rather than considering the factual needs of the Columbia athletes. You know what Trump said about Bollinger, but Sovern may have been worse.

At Thu Nov 10, 09:43:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

5:33, you need to work on your reading comprehension.
As for criticism, it's expected with an 0-8 team. What has been going on here is well beyond mere criticism. The caustic, hostile, hateful and personal tone is damaging, as is treating the coaching staff as though they are already gone. Trying to drive a wedge between the players and the coaching staff is damaging. They have two games left. Criticism is fair, but they don't deserve this level of disrespect, no matter how angry you are at CU's lame football history or the wins and losses this year. Remember, you are talking about men's livelihoods, men with children and families, who took the risk of coming to CU, who want to win even more than you do, and who unlike you spend 12 to 14 hours a day trying to make it happen.
To paraphrase a Harvard man, let us not assassinate these coaches further. You've done enough. Have you no sense of decency, sir? At long last, have you left no sense of decency?

At Thu Nov 10, 10:01:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

5:47, thank you for making my point. We don't know what Kelly did at Georgetown. But we do know that an 0-11 season didn't mean he couldn't turn it around. Similarly, we don't know what went wrong this year at CU. As at Georgetown, even if they go 0-10, it won't mean necessarily that Wilson and company can't turn it around. I don't know what is wrong -- but I know you don't either. That's the point. If it's not the coaching, it would be a mistake to fire the coaches and start all over again. If it is the coaching, then it's the opposite. The fact that the team is 0-8 doesn't answer the question.
Most of the guys here are too busy looking for scapegoats to see that. The anger is understandable, and I share it, but his isn't 1970's or '80's Columbia, and Wilson isn't McElreavy. Or Naso. Or Garrett.

At Thu Nov 10, 10:14:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

6:06, I appreciate the tone of your response. I agree about the hospital, but that was decades ago. As for what Trump said about Bollinger, he was pissed that CU didn't bail him out of a bad, over-leveraged position at Riverside South. If you look at the situation now, Columbia has expanded its athletic program to 31 teams. It refurbished the facilities and is building the first new one in decades. The men's and women;s basketball hires look good. All the teams are better, even if they have a way to go. Even Bollinger helps by interviewing key recruits -- to make clear to them that he takes athletics seriously. He's no Sovern or McGill, even if he won't spend $100 million on a practice field adjacent to campus or tear up South Field and tear down Butler Library for the football program.

At Thu Nov 10, 11:13:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon, I think it is safe to say that nobody is trying to drive a wedge between the coaching staff and the players. The Coaching staff has done that on their own, without any help from this blog.

At Thu Nov 10, 11:58:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous John Alex '89 said...

Damned anonymoose! a deleterious animal.

Leon, you are a recent player methinks. I love that. No player has complained to me or bitched about anything. They want to play and could not give a fucking red damn about anything we say.

If you were from my and Flickers era, you would get where we are from. I ain't saying we know where you are at, but throw your name on it like a man and join us. believe, it's liberating

At Thu Nov 10, 09:09:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jake..love these photos--it's like a casting call for Sopranos gone bad-love the guy in the sweatpants up to his shoulders. Gilmore is only one who makes sense if we are trying to change anything.

Back to Flick's comments, I help coach hs ftball in NE and I've had two or three kids choose Brown over us because "I don't want to put all that hard work in and lose for 4 years"--guess what-it's true until proven otherwise.

At Thu Nov 10, 10:16:00 PM GMT+7, Blogger Lumox said...

Seriously, Jim Tressel and a high school football coach? Is this a serious blog or just a joke? Why not go for Joe Paterno? I hear he's available now.

At Thu Nov 10, 10:33:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Until you survey the players you're never going to really know what's going on. Do you really think they're going to to tell you how they truely feel during the season? As a parent of a lower classman, the perception presented to us of what this program was all about prior to arrival and what it truley is, is completely different. But it was "our choice" to come here knowing full well this wasn't a "football school" but offered both football and great academics. These boys came here with their heads held high and full of excitement and confidence. Energy, hope, commitment,dedication, working hard...they came with all the stuff you need to play football with.Now their confidence is gone and the enthusiasm for the game is gone. Football is a tough sport. They all knew that. But playing mind games is a different story. I feel like we failed our son in not helping to look into this program more but hindsite is 20/20. And let me tell you ...it's not all about winning. Yes they all want that,but they want to be treated with respect. To come into a progarm with hope and end the year feeling demoralized. That's pathetic. Just a little encouragement every once in while... not to be ignored/belittled because they make a mistake. how do you learn from that? They are not in the pros. they still look to the coaches as teachers. They get it that football is alot of yelling and they will be yelled at. They're not asking to be coddled. But negative reinforecemnet 6 days a week just doesn't work. They need to have a reason to feel they are needed/wanted on this team. Like anything in life, if you feel like a worth while person, you will perform better. Human nature. Of course most parents aren't going to say anything...there are repercussions for everything. What ever the program was 60 years ago, 10 years ago, it really doesn't matter. We are in the present and need to move forward. Something is wrong. Geez, you guys. Stop the arguing. you wouldn't be reading the blog if you didnt' care about this program. I want my son to want to stay in this program. I owe that to him and for that I write this letter. let's just try and help the board/administration (anyone that can make a differnce) fix it and move forward! Go Lions.

At Thu Nov 10, 10:52:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Bill Flick '87 said...

Good stuff, Leon, as John said you will feel better once you join us and come out.

To your comments: I think there comes a time when a coach has simply lost too much forward momentum and it is time to move on. Perhaps this is the case with NW, perhaps not. I definitely do not have enough data to form a conclusion. I still have confidence in Murphy to make that call...

Couple other comments;

A. Will one or more of you anonymous players or parents please tell us the abuses that are occurring by the staff?

B. I have gotten to know some of the more recent football alums via our tailgates and by and large they all spoke highly of Norries, not so much of some specific assistants, one in particular.

Is this information inaccurate or has it changed in the past two years or so?

C. Did something specific happen midway through last year that no one wants to talk about? I said earlier this program seems to have taken a dramatic turnaround
right after the Penn and Dartmouth losses last year... We were all enthused and excited up until then. The wheels seem to have completely fallen off ever since. Does anyone have a theory as to why/what happened?

At Fri Nov 11, 12:26:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My son, also a lower classmen has been playing FB since pee wee days. As years passed it got tough, harder practices, longer hours, coaches that were not easy, really made him work(high school). Through the hs years, yeah he would complain, had injuries,worked his butt off.He NEVER lost respect for any of his coaches,he was always eager to please,wanted them to be proud of his FB accomplishments.We also should have looked a little deeper into the C. football program. The change in my son is very bothersome. He knew football here was not going to be easy,he worked previous summers to be ready for hard work and dedicate himself to his studies and his love for football. Something is so very wrong here. I know many of you want examples of why these kids are feeling this way,and that you also feel that they should be able to handle anything that is dished out. I am sorry to say I cannot give you any examples, all I can do is tell you that many of these kids have lost their passion,zest,love and yes self confidence where FB is concerned.So please take it from a parent who doesn't want to start trouble . I'm just someone who sees a big change in their son and his team mates.Someone who does not even know how to approach the subject of playing next year. This is not only a plea to change whatever has gone wrong but to call these kids together,promise changes,get them high on FB again.Make the same promises that were made when they were recruited and follow through this time.

At Fri Nov 11, 01:58:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

here's an idea...let's reach into our past and grab John Garrett who is a coach with the Dallas Cowboys and has "history" with the school...

At Fri Nov 11, 02:12:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Leon--This is 5:33 and there's nothing wrong with my "reading comprehension." It's yours that's faulty. I have not written anything "hateful, hostile, caustic or personal" about the coaches, and hardly anybody has among the many hundreds of comments the past few weeks. What I have written is that I'm sick of losing for 60 years, and that when you've been losing for 60 years all the ifs, ands or buts are irrelevant. Only W-L is relevant. I don't hate anyone, I don't want anyone to starve, I just want an Admin that wants to win and will seek out coaches who know how to win. I want Columbia to win because I love Columbia, not just winning. And I'm tired of people who don't know a football from an eggplant somehow knowing that Columbia can't win in football. That's the public's perception of Columbia. And, no, I don't give any credit to the perceptions of stupid people, but it still hurts because Columbia University is so much more than football or all sports added together, yet that's the reputation it has.
Finally, as always, I'll be ecstatic if the Lions win this weekend and very happy for the players. Then it'll be back to losing unless something changes.

At Fri Nov 11, 03:27:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Leon L. said...

11:12, apologies for the reading comprehension crack. I was venting my own frustrations and it was inappropriate. And all of the issues raised in my posts were not directed at you, obviously. Without identifiers, one cannot determine who sent what, and which subsequent posts might have been follow-ups, etc.

I do think, however, that if you read through the posts here, you will see some people saying "NW is a great but . . . " and many others just flat out attacking the coaches in a much-too-nasty tone. It's unfair and ultimately, counterproductive even if it feels satisfying in the moment.

I am with you in our frustration over CU's performance -- and mine goes back to early childhood in the Buff Donelli years. (By the way, did you know he is the only coach to head a college team and an NFL team at the same time? Duquesne and the Steelers. You could look it up.) I think, though, that the we're-losing-eat-the-coach approach is a symptom of the program's losing history, and would doom it to further losing. Another poster said most decisions are made irrationally. Turning this around requires rational, deliberate decision-making and adjustment.
Believe it or not, Wilson and company have made progress, for which they should receive credit. Lowy, for example, the fourth string RB (who had himself been injured, by the way), turned in a creditable performance this year after Garrett and Gerst went down. When was the last time CU had 4 capable running backs? I remember a team in the '70's that didn't have a single halfback! The lone fullback was pressed into service )and did a pretty good job).
Maybe Wilson deserves a chance to rebound from this season. Had it not been for all the injuries this year, the team may have had that additional increment that could have resulted in victories over Fordham, SHU, Penn and Yale.
Despite everything bad that has happened this season, CU played Harvard tough, and Harvard is head and shoulders above the rest of the league. Murphy said "“They made everything hard today. . . .They made us very uncomfortable. They made us squirm.’’ While I'm not satisfied with the loss, I'm also not sure that this football group is all that far away from turning this around.
Football is a funny game. Two or three guys can make a huge difference. Take them away and the whole thing falls apart and you can look incompetent. Add them back and everything clicks and you look like world beaters. There have been alot of injuries to key personnel this year, and losing that tends to feed on itself. Despite that, this year's team has maintained the overall competitiveness that has been the developing hallmark of Wilson's term (despite Dartmouth and Albany). Unless the AD finds some specific flaws in Wilson's work -- and it may, for all I know -- I think he should have another year. And I would not be surprised if it turns out very differently from this one. If it could work, I'd rather see that than a new coach and having to wait another three years for his program to kick in. If it can't work, well then let's make a change. We won't know until the athletic department does its review. Give them a chance to do their jobs in the present. Let's not saddle them with the problems of prior generations. That will doom us to the repetition none of us is willing to tolerate.

At Fri Nov 11, 04:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The three finalists could be;

John Garrett
Carl Pelini
Mark Zelinski

At Fri Nov 11, 04:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon,You continue to want to give this coaching staff another year. I have one question for you. Did you read the posts from 7:33 and 9:26? Not trying to be rude, but you seem very "closeminded"when it comes to making a change. You seem so high on NW and staff, and ignore the fact that the team is pretty disallusioned.Parents have stated that something is wrong and you want to ignore it. WHY?

At Fri Nov 11, 04:54:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Leon--Thanks for your civil, well-argued response (11:12).You make some reasonable points. My frustration blocks out both micro- and macro-analysis and leaves me in the stance of "Just win, Baby!" to quote the late Al Davis. There is nothing for it but to await whatever actions the powers-that-be decide upon. But I do feel their deliberations should be the most intensive and careful ever.
Otherwise we remain stuck in Groundhog Day mode with Lucy promising not to pull away the football and then, oops, she did it again!

At Fri Nov 11, 07:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

This job is ripe for a total takeover and turnaround. Instead of woe is me, we lose every year there is nothing we can do. We lose recruits to Harvard and Penn.Enuff!

Whether it is the current coach or a new coach, this situation can be reversed quickly. It needs some bold moves and some solid financial commitment.

First commit to upgrade player creature comforts: facilities, travel, atheltic wear, food, etc. Right now the players receive a sweatshirt and sweat pants. Heck, we know they don't have parkas. Seriously upgrade this. It is an essential aspect of recruiting today. Columbia wear head to toe. Upgrade their after practice food service. Fly to Dartmouth, Cornell and Harvard. Cut out a spot for them in the new building, with weights, training room, film room and lounges.

Commit to a PR campaign to put the team on the map. NYC is the media capital of the world. These players are super stars: big, strong, handsome and smart. Get them on the Today show;Regis and Kelly; have them usher at Yankee games; get them appearances at fashion shows. Who knows, the opportunities are endless. This will end losing recruits to Penn!

Advertise and promote a Saturday at Wein Stadium as the answer to high priced, out of touch professional sporting events. $10.00 gets you a ticket and program. Use public transportation to the newly renovated stop. Watch real atheletes playing for the love of the game. View the splendor of the Hudson Valley. Goal should be 10,000 fans a game, sell out at HC.

In one or two seasons of creative commitment college football could be brought back to NYC in a big way. The players to do it are there and they will continue to come the more it works. I'm telling you it is ripe. The resources and opportunities are under utilized.

At Fri Nov 11, 07:28:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To 4:04 loved it! We seriously need for you to be heard where it counts, not just this blog.Take your ideas to the next level.

At Sat Nov 12, 03:58:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lots of dark alleys in Hong Kong. If any of you want to fly the 15 hours in Economy class to challenge me to a fight in one of them, just let me know and I will put it in my diary.

I am short but slow, so watch out!

Go Lions...Beat Cornell

Chen 82

At Sat Nov 12, 10:44:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are the best! great lines.

Your tailgating friend from Dartmouth.

Go Lions!


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