Posted: 8:48 p.m. Tuesday, March 26, 2013
By Matt Sussman
Well, Danny White got his name.
When the Buffalo athletic director canned Reggie Witherspoon, it wasn't because his teams didn't win — they did, often 20 wins a season. But they wanted to get to the NCAA tournament, and this time they didn't go to Erie Community College to pull a coach out of nowhere. They did get someone with minimal coaching experience, none as a head coach, but he did have a plentiful basketball history.
Bobby Hurley is loathed by many a Michigan fan as a superior guard for Duke in the early 1990s. He was a lottery draft pick by the Sacramento Kings, did some NBA scouting and then turned to the coaching ranks. His teams haven't been wildly successful (Rhody was 8-21 this year) but he must've done something right during the interview process. White is most certainly going all-in with a famous name to lead their program.
Bobby Hurley took to recruiting as fast as any former NBA player I've seen. Buffalo just hit jackpot IMO.— Dave Telep (@DaveTelep) March 26, 2013
I know that opening press conferences don't win or lose games, but I watched a bit of the announcement and, to be honest, almost fell asleep during his speech and Q&A.; It felt like a math lecture. Maybe he was nervous, as first-time head coaches are prone to be like that, but like any new coach we'll have to see if he succeeds. He gets Javon McCrea for a year, and that's not only going to be fun, but a necessary transition from one coach to the next. Since he was a guard, it'll be interesting to see how Hurley develops Jarryn Skeete, who showed flashes of brilliance, especially against Akron.
Bull Run was initially not very impressed, but gained a little more confidence after the initial exposure.
My main concern is that, yes, he spent two seasons at Wagner and one at Rhode Island, but Hurley is not used to being on the "good" side of mid-major sports. From Duke to the NBA, he's always had access to resources. Buffalo is a nice little city but not what he's used to. Can he make it work for UB?