"My rule was I wouldn't recruit a kid if he had grass in front of his house.
That's not my world. My world was a cracked sidewalk." —Al McGuire

Monday, March 19, 2007

Gene Frenkel drops the cowbell in favor of the keyboard

One of our most faithful blog readers is the eponymous (lol) Gene Frenkel......if you read the comments on many of our entries, you've undoubtedly read his thoughtful points of view. Well, today Gene Frenkel gets the spotlight based on two comments he made in response to those in the 'quick-to-judgement corner' of the MU fan base. As an alum who suffered through the 1987-1991 seasons while at MU, and one with a strong recollection of the 'glory days' between 1980 -2000, Gene's comments hit home.

Here are Gene's two most recent comments re-pasted here for a broader audience:

Seriously. Get rid of Crean?? What are you people smoking? Why? Because expectations are now higher than "Gee, I really hope we can make the tournament"? C'mon.

Look, wanting Crean's teams to win in the first round is one thing. But, if he doesn't get that done in three consecutive NCAA tournaments, (some of) you are ready to run him out of town? My God people, what is your attention span and patience and loyalty.

Be honest with yourselves. This is Marquette. Not Kansas. Not Duke. Not North Carolina. It's Marquette. If you get rid of Crean for not making for supposed shortcomings in the NCAA, do you not think he'd have about 100 offers coming his way?

Sure, I'm disappointed like everyone else in the tournament results the last couple years. But for God's sakes. Look at some of the track records of other "great" coaches and how many/few accolades have they had compared to Crean?

As for his coaches leaving, many of them leave for HEAD COACHING JOBS...the sign of a good coach and program.

Crean's done nothing but throw himself into this job, the school, the alumni, and the tradition. If it weren't for Crean, MU would still be in C-USA and wouldn't have nearly the national recognition the school is finally getting.

I'd like to think that his program should get a little more loyalty from "fans". How short attention spans do some of you people have? What would you replace him with? It would be a PR debacle the size of "Gold".

The number of coaches out there that have been to more than one final four are few and far between. If Crean doesn't get to one every five years, you want to can him? Fine. And what do you replace him with? Hope MU gets lucky and finds what... another "Crean". This is just ludicrous the thought of getting rid of him.

The Badgers lost!!! How many final fours has he been too? If they don't make it to the sweet 16 next year, they should get a new coach!!!!!

Sound ridiculous, right? That's what this 'fire Crean' stuff sounds like.

Again. How many sweet 16's did MU go to between 1980 and 1993? How many NCAAs? How many final fours? I'll ask again, did everyone enjoy the 80s?

You don't change Crean unless his team has totally shut him out, or they aren't getting to the NCAAs consistently. There's more to Crean's "success" than winning a national title. He doesn't need one to be a success and MU fans should feel the same way.

Thanks, Gene.


Anonymous said...

I completely agree with his posts. Particularly his comparisons to Duke, et al. It is all about expectations. I expect over the course of any given decade, that Marquette would be in the NCAAs most of those years, and make the Sweet 16 about half of that time. And we should have a coach that loves the University, unlike O'Neill, and holds the program up to the same ethical standards that the University sets for itself as a whole. That means that the players attend class, don't get into trouble, and we are completely clean of recruiting violations.

IMO only two coaches in Marquette history have met all of those - Mc Guire and Crean.

Furthermore, Crean IMO always has to win recruits over more than most coaches. Would James be here if Indiana showed more interest? Would Wade have been here had Crean not stuck with him? Look, even in this state, Wisconsin is far and away the more popular of the two programs. I think the de facto choice of many in state recruits is Madison. Crean has to work just to change those minds.

Twenty years ago we were in what is now the Horizon League with Bob Dukiet leading us nowhere. Let's remember that.

Gene Frenkle said...

Thanks for the kind words guys and the feature. I've often told people that..I'd be doing myself, and every member of this blog a disservice if I didn't play the HELL out of this keyboard!!

Keep up the good work and thanks for giving me an outlet to discuss/read-about MU hoops.

Anonymous said...

Bo Must Go!!

How can the Grateful Red tolerate such an underachieving performance in the NCAA's from a team talented enough to be ranked #1 in the nation just a few weeks ago? BO MUST GO!!

It does sound kinda crazy. We should all be thankful for every day that Crean continues to be the MU coach. I know I am.

Anonymous said...

I'd just like to say that over the last 2 seasons Marquette and Crean have developed a number of new fans from the Richmond, Indiana area. Myself, and at least a few others, will continue to follow and favor MU in the future regardless of how James is doing or where he is playing ball. Yep, even after he is gone a number of us will continue watching and cheering on Crean and the team.

I'm not going to give my 2 cents on Crean's coaching or recruiting abilities as I am not qualified, nor interested, in doing so. What I will say, though, is that MU has a fine tradition that spans more than just the last few years, is a FUN program to follow, is in a premier league, has built some fine rivalies, etc. Additionally, we've enjoyed following the program on sites like this, and have respected the die-hard MU fan base, which always seem to take the high road instead of the 'uglier road' that many other fan bases typically take (read ND, OSU, IU...).

I'll continue visiting Cracked Sidewalks through the offseason to track recruiting efforts and look forward to next season. Like all the rest of you, I'll be hoping that we bounce back from the 1st round loss and have an azz kicking 07-08 season, a higher placing in the conference and another NCAA bid. One thing for sure, IMO, is that next season will be enjoyable!

Thank you to all who run and contribute to this site. It is one of my daily requirements, and will be for a long time to come.

Oh, and 1 more thing...GO GEORGETOWN (at least we can cheer on a fellow BE member to the championship).

Anonymous said...

My only comment is that basketball programs that:1) demand we pay our season tickets by the end of June even though we don't see them until October.2) That reseat every other year.3)That charge seat liscense fees 4) And who play a lame duck home schedual, even though alot of big time programs do, WIN TOURNAMENT GAMES! Crean does need to win, anything short of a couple wins next year and he should feel a little heat. What is wrong with this? You people are on this site and on MUSCOOP after every loss calling for Creans head and Telling DJ not to shoot threes. After every win you talk about how we might win the darn Big East. But when we get are butts handed to us in the first round for the second straight year you say Oh it's okay, Crean saved this program. What a joke, I hope Crean puts more pressure on himself than you all do otherwise we will never acomplish what we all want....

Anonymous said...

We got our butts handed to us two straight years...hmm...who knew. I watched Novak take a game tying 3 pointer with under 10 seconds left.

Hardly a "butts handed to us" performance.

Anonymous said...

Who was the higher seed in htat game? I believe Marquette was. Butts handed to us or not, it was a loss! So do you agree with me or what?

Anonymous said...

No, I don't agree with you on that.

It was a 7 vs 10 game. The matchups are almost 50 - 50. The 8 vs 9 game the same.

Butts handed to us is when you dominated in a game like we were against MSU. Sorry, but a game that is decided in the final seconds is not a "butts handed" to us game. It's a loss in a game that put a 7 vs 10 seed.

Anonymous said...

I'm getting dizzy watching Anonymous argue with Anonymous. And is there a 3rd Anonymous. Who's on First, what's on second????? Crips, people, at least make up a name to go with your comments.

Anonymous said...

Gene and I talk about Crean nearly everyday. It's a fine line. While he's done well ushering us into the Big East, I don't think it's wrong to expect him to have some success in the post season. If he continues the early exits, it might be goodbye Koko.