I Love the New Coach. Who is the New Coach?

I love the new Tigers coach. I am optimistic about his ability to continue building on what Justin Fuente created over the past 4 years. He’s likely going to recruit well. He’ll maintain and further grow a culture of winning. He’ll position Memphis for a “Power 5” conference invitation. He’ll likely lead the program to prestigious bowl wins. He’ll be the coach that goes down in history as the one that established Memphis in the upper echelon of the sport of College Football.

Who is the new coach?

I have no idea.

But I’ll believe these things. I’ll imagine these things. I’ll argue about why these things are true – and I’ll convince myself that it’s a blessing in disguise that Justin Fuente left.

I’ll do this if the Tigers hire Barry Odom.

I’ll do this if the Tigers hire Lincoln Riley.

I’ll do this if the Tigers hire some coordinator I’ve never heard of.

I’ll do this if the Tigers bring back Larry Porter, sign him to a lifetime contract – and immediately buy $10m worth of air time to run the “Join the Revolution” television spots on a continual loop.

Yep, I’ll do it.

I’m a fan.  That’s what I’ll do.


It’s why I was on the local news from a sports bar in 1994, as a 17 year old, when Memphis hired Rip Scherer – telling the reporter how excited I was about the “new era” in Tiger football. Finally, someone with some youthful energy.

It’s why I attended Larry Porter’s introductory press conference some years ago and believed he was “the answer” for the Tiger program. Finally someone with recruiting chops.

It’s why Tennessee fans got excited about Derek Dooley – even though he was a below average coach at a Sun Belt school. Finally someone with reverence for the traditions of UT and the SEC. 

The coaching carousel affords insanity.

The coaching carousel affords hope. It affords justification and rationalization. It affords blind faith. It affords staying up until 2am, incessantly checking Twitter and the accounts of blog writers from Colombia, Missouri and other such remote locales.

Did you know Sonny Cumbie is potentially a candidate for the Texas offensive coordinator position? I’ve read 29 articles about that. In the last 3 hours.

It affords watching YouTube videos of candidates for the purpose of building the psychological structure articulated above.

The coaching carousel is a bumpy ride. It may carry on for days, it may be over in minutes.

But when it does end, it ends hopefully.