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Season Recap and Looking Forward

We desperately need the right hire. Haslem waiting one year too long to replace Mel might be a pretty solid death blow to Griz softball for the next few years. If we don’t get someone special to drag the program out of the garbage heap, it will become very humbling to watch this program.
 
Player defections were going to happen last year or this year regardless. Players do in fact come to the program because of the coaches. Sometimes we assume that they don't, they are committed to the program and not the coach but that is rarely the case.

Talked to a former football player recently who was recruited to Nebraska under O'Reilly and then after his sophomore year had to handle the coaching change to Frost, and he said it was a more difficult transition not because of scheme but rather he lost any connection to the staff and coaches he could implicitly trust. Ten years ago, there was no risk in making changes. There is now. Bobby recognized it, and whomever they choose to run the program next for softball is going to encounter it as well. That was going to happen regardless if it were to have occurred last year or this year.

Peschek hurts because she showed incredible promise as a Freshman. Maybe the new staff might have the opportunity to convince her to stay but again the concern from my perspective is handing over the search process to entity outside the department changes the time line significantly.

If the new coach takes over as is able to convince Peschek in particular to return, and they are going to be able to keep most of the incoming class, they'll have less work to do than they would have had last year. They could go Hauck or Holsinger and completely run off old players that don't fit their vision, and remake the squad. I think the job got a bit easier with the new NCAA rules on NIL compensation. Rumor or at least what I heard is the NCAA will have guidance this summer that will provide interim structure that might include scholarships/compensation rules while they wait to see if Congress will grant them anti-trust exemption so that they can artificially limit wages for players.
 
To be fair, with how how bad this team has been, outside of maybe 1 or 2 I'm not sure we want to keep any of the players on this roster
 
Talking to a friend this weekend about the situation, and saw the program extensively live this year said that the program would be better off long term if they didn't have to replace the whole squad in a four week window in June/July. That is what worries me the most about the timeline for a hire, is in an ideal world, they have their hire in place by the end of next week (end of the CSWS).

I have heard radio silence for two weeks on what direction they were going to head.

Like I said my hunch is they'll reach out to Kate Sinnott to see if there is interest, but beyond that there are just assistant coaches at least at the D1 level that might present logical fits but not actual known interest. Marina Demore (was Nevada's interim last year) could be a target. Held up her end of the bargain in a tough situation (really late resignation by former head coach Linda Garza) by winning 40 games this year and was a top 50 team all year. Nevada decided to go in another direction (Victoria Hayward) and now she's on the market.
 
It’s no secret that I’ve been a supporter of the Griz SB team and its coaches. I had high hopes for a turnaround this season. But even I could see that changes were in order.

I’ve been on a few interview committees over the years and it’s the norm that the first “question” all potential coaches are usually asked is: “Can you make this team competitive NEXT season? How?

I personally believe the new coach should be guaranteed carte blanche. My rationale:

Last fall during the Providence College vs. Montana DH, I struck up a conversation with a fan (I honestly can’t remember his name) who told me he was “following” a few Providence players. We talked softball for almost 2 hours, and it became clear he was very, very familiar with western states AAU softball. I asked if he was a coach. “Not softball,” he said. “But I follow softball year-round. And I’m baffled. This Montana program could easily be one of the best in the west,” he said.
Briefly, his opinions:

* The Montana softball facility is fantastic. Equal to the best college facilities in the west. Top 5, no doubt,” he said.
* Montana already draws a western states “Top 10” fan “ticket buying” fan base… “Double, if not more, than most western universities,” he said. “Some schools don’t even charge admission anymore because there’s no fan interest in college softball,” he said. “This program is rich,” he said.
* “Kids love playing here (Montana). “I personally know dozens of high school and AAU players who’d die to play here. They love playing in front of fans,” he said, “Which Montana has.” He added, " I personally know 20-30 coaches who would jump at the chance to run this program. Get a young coach," he said. "Do not go old school.”
 
It’s no secret that I’ve been a supporter of the Griz SB team and its coaches. I had high hopes for a turnaround this season. But even I could see that changes were in order.

I’ve been on a few interview committees over the years and it’s the norm that the first “question” all potential coaches are usually asked is: “Can you make this team competitive NEXT season? How?

I personally believe the new coach should be guaranteed carte blanche. My rationale:

Last fall during the Providence College vs. Montana DH, I struck up a conversation with a fan (I honestly can’t remember his name) who told me he was “following” a few Providence players. We talked softball for almost 2 hours, and it became clear he was very, very familiar with western states AAU softball. I asked if he was a coach. “Not softball,” he said. “But I follow softball year-round. And I’m baffled. This Montana program could easily be one of the best in the west,” he said.
Briefly, his opinions:

* The Montana softball facility is fantastic. Equal to the best college facilities in the west. Top 5, no doubt,” he said.
* Montana already draws a western states “Top 10” fan “ticket buying” fan base… “Double, if not more, than most western universities,” he said. “Some schools don’t even charge admission anymore because there’s no fan interest in college softball,” he said. “This program is rich,” he said.
* “Kids love playing here (Montana). “I personally know dozens of high school and AAU players who’d die to play here. They love playing in front of fans,” he said, “Which Montana has.” He added, " I personally know 20-30 coaches who would jump at the chance to run this program. Get a young coach," he said. "Do not go old school.”
Did you get his number😁?
 
The only information I've heard was early June and I took that to mean by the end of the dead period for recruiting which is June 7th. They have probably about a week to play with, because I think they'd like to have a coach before the portal closes in case there was any chance they were going to hire a coach with existing D1 connections that could influence players to jump into the portal and follow.


Here are some dates to remember:

June 8th to Aug 12th is the open HS recruiting period. Less important for the upcoming year.

May 19th to June 17th is the open portal period for College Softball. After that, the process is a bit more convoluted and difficult for both coaches and players to navigate. This just based upon current roster demands, is likely the clock that the AD is operating on and within.
 
I have the feeling this is one of those ground-level rebuilding situations where they give the new coach some time to install all (or most of) the components of the program before making an announcement.
You might be right. I suspect also that they have made the hire and it takes time for venting to get done, and the new coach to notify his current employer.
 
They are taking their sweet time that’s for sure. Sheesus. Haslam has effed this up big time by not replacing the staff LAST YEAR. The good news is they could hire a high school coach who plays small ball and steals bases and the Griz team will automatically be better.
 
They are taking their sweet time that’s for sure. Sheesus. Haslam has effed this up big time by not replacing the staff LAST YEAR. The good news is they could hire a high school coach who plays small ball and steals bases and the Griz team will automatically be better.
Relax, yes it's taking a while, but I'm sure we're still gonna get somebody good
 
They weren't going to make the decision last year for a multitude of reasons. I was told that by more than one person that would have had direct knowledge of the situation. I am not going to get into athletic department politics, but there was a reason that Kent said what he said at the end of the athletic season last June.

That they farmed out the hiring process to another agency is a choice that speaks volumes about where college athletics is now and where the athletic department focus is. They a) don't want to screw this hire up but with some merit the complaints about the hire/fire processes at UM, they need b) an organization who could be transparent about their hiring mechanisms. That may mean slower, but the hope is they are going to get it right.
 
They are taking their sweet time that’s for sure. Sheesus. Haslam has effed this up big time by not replacing the staff LAST YEAR. The good news is they could hire a high school coach who plays small ball and steals bases and the Griz team will automatically be better.
I’d just try to hire a successful JC coach who has a bunch of sophomores to bring with him/her, but I’m no AD.
 
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