Thursday, November 29, 2012

Just In Case: A Lil' Butch Jones Info

It seems like just yesterday, Brendan Murphy was talking to us about Brock Spack on our little podcast called the Handsome Hour...and now, Mr. Murph has gone big time.

If you do a Google search for "Butch Jones Purdue" you'll see a bunch of hacks quoting a "source" or Twitter as the way they heard that Butch Jones has been offered the head coaching job by Morgan Burke. Well, there's one source that's in the know who's talking, and it's Murphy. I did a little investigating of my own to see if our pal would squeal like a pig about the juicy details*...and of course, like all good girls, he doesn't kiss and tell. If you want to ask me if I believe the source- Hells yes, I do. Murphy doesn't lie.  Let's be clear though, no one has said Jones has taken the job...yet...accept for one moron on the radio out of Cincy.  But he even backpedalled in the last 24 hours as well.

If you jump in the way back machine, you might remember this article that showed Jones as the apple of J's eye. Before he published this piece, we discussed Jones...and I told him that he was dreaming.  I didn't think Burke would be able to pay Jones' buyout or subsequent salary...but we all know now that the rules have changed a bit as Burke understands the importance of hiring a guy who will win quickly win...and subsequently, quickly get the enthusiasm among Boilers back to an acceptable level.

Burke made the firing of Hope official on Sunday evening (as you all know)...Shortly after, this listing for the job was posted.  Since there's yet to be a final decision, you should apply- Chase that dream dagnabbit!

We'll see what happens in the next few days with this situation...but here are some interesting details around this story:

-GBI has reported since this was made official that Jones was the number one candidate and that he was contacted with the first group of "feeler" calls.

-Jones is 0-3 v. Purdue as a coach (while at Central Michigan)...All three losses came versus Joe Tiller-coached teams; all were close, if my memory serves me correctly.  Maybe most-interestingly, all three losses came in just over one year (07-08). The most-notable loss for Jones' CMU team v. Purdue was the 51-48 barn burner in Detroit that pitted Painter v. Lefevour gave Purdue its first Motor City Bowl Championship (meh).

-Jones took the Cinci job in 2010...following Brian Kelly...and before Kelly, Mark Dantonio.

-He's been a head coach for six seasons...four of those seasons ended in bowl appearances.  His combined record at CMU and Cincy is 49-27.

-Before being HC, he was WR coach under Rich Rodriguez at West Virginia...before that, his first stint at CMU was from '98 to '04, coaching tight ends, then running backs, then becoming the offensive coordinator. He was OC for his alma mater, Ferris State, OC for tiny, private Wilkes college and GA for Rutgers after his playing days at Ferris State were over.

-Purdue is set to play Cincinnati in the last day of August, 2013...the season opener; I'm sure they'd be happy to see him back, should he choose to come to Purdue.

-Cincinnati will be looking for its ninth win this season on Saturday at I don't expect to hear anything before Sunday. But like I've been for much of this of this process, I'm speculating.

"Purdue is that way from here, correct?"

*For the record, I wouldn't have published our conversation had he told me...but since he stayed tight-lipped, I thought it'd be A-OK to share with the class.


Andrew Day said...

That job posting is no longer available....... Wonder if they've filled the position?

strawmy57 said...

The link doesn't take you directly to the job detail just the sever, but going to the homepage and a quick search under athletics and it still shows up.

zlionsfan said...

It's job number 1201907. Odd that they don't give you a URL you can easily copy, but they do have a share mechanism ... ah, here we go.

Here's a direct link.

zlionsfan said...

Also, something to think about ... I know Jones doesn't necessarily have a long history of success, but it's worth putting into context. The last head coach Purdue hired who was coming off successful seasons at comparable schools was either Jimmy Phelan or Andy Smith, depending on whether or not Missouri counts as a peer. (At the time, they were still members of the Missouri Valley Conference.)

So it's either been 90 or 100 years.

Purdue Matt said...

I would be thrilled with Jones.

Purdue Matt said...

Cincinnati isn't comparable to Purdue. Their stadium holds 35k and they play in a mid major conference.

Purdue Matt said...

Other coaches who came to Purdue after having success elsewhere as the head man:

Alex Agase - several 2nd place finishes in B1G at NU

Jim Young - several first and second place finishes in the WAC at Arizona

Fred Akers - several first place finishes in SWC at Texas, also first place place finish in WAC at Wyoming

And of course Tiller coached Wyoming to a first place finish in WAC at Wyoming

Plang said...

Whether or not Jones is the man, I don't have a bad feeling about that hire. We could do much worse than Jones. Even if he hasn't been at big programs, he does win. That's important. We really could not say that about Hope when he came to West La. While he may not be my first pick, he certainly fits the bill, and I think Purdue students, alumni, and fans would see improvement in the team during season 1 under his guidance.

The big question is, can he get us to a Rose Bowl or better? That, I have no idea on. He can get us out of that smelly part of the basement right underneight the stairs we've been stuck in for the last few years.

zlionsfan said...

Cincinnati's stadium is much smaller, true ... but I think a better point would be that they've been in a BCS conference less than ten years.

On the other hand, they've won or shared the conference title three of the last four years, and will make it four of five if they beat Connecticut this weekend. Two of those seasons led to BCS bids. The Big East may not be strong, and it's getting significantly weaker, but it's still a BCS conference, and UC is still punching its weight.

And Jones would be arriving with back-to-back 8- or 9-win seasons right now. No one else arrived like that. Agase broke .500 just twice at Northwestern and was 2-9 in his last season; Young's final season in the second-tier WAC was 5-6; and of course if anything, the WAC was comparatively weaker in Tiller's day than in Young's. The closest match would be Akers, but even he failed to break .500 in his final season at Texas.

All of these other guys were either succeeding at weaker schools or struggling at comparable (or greater) schools right before they came here.

conk said...

Jones = slam dunk hire

James said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James said...

Referring to Cincinnati radio personalities, 700WLW generates a lot of smoke but not a lot of heat. It is the flagship station of Clear Channel. And yes, good old Nippert Stadium only holds about 35,000 people [my left ankle frequently reminds me of my last visit to the Nippert field in 1973]. But the 65,000 seat Paul Brown Stadium is available for UC, if necessary. I'd like to see Purdue do away with a "cupcake" game and play either UC or Louisville every year. The Cincy area still produces great football talent, and there is no way UK can keep Kentucky's top football talent in-state.

zlionsfan said...

what sucks about all this is that we'll have to wait at least until Sunday to hear anything. Any coach who still has regular-season games left isn't going to announce anything until afterward.

zlionsfan said...

also, I wouldn't be surprised to see the Big Ten move to a nine-game conference schedule: six in your division, one protected rival outside it, two games against rotating opponents, so at worst you'd be playing teams twice every six years. (And there will be lame opponents for Rutgers and Maryland - an argument for adding teams at opposite ends of the conference, rather than on the same side.)

I would prefer a local rival to a MACrifice (not that Purdue always beats them) or a I-AA team. The problem is that getting a relatively easy win looks nice when it comes to bowls. On the other hand, a local rivalry could mean more tickets sold, so Burke might be interested in that.

James said...

I'm now pursuaded that Purdue needs tougher pre-Conference opponents. Two "Macrifices" (I like that!) and either Cincinnati or Louisville would be great preparation for BiG Ten opponents. The Cincy and Louisville fans could easily drive to the games, and vice versa. My dad was an Eastern Kentucky grad, and if he were alive he would have been at the game, but Purdue can do better. A home-and-home with Cincinnati followed by a home-and-home with Louisville would do wonders for the program. Tom Izzo has made a career of playing tough opponents ("Anywhere, anytime"). Why not Purdue?

zlionsfan said...

There's more of an incentive to play better teams when you're at the top of your conference, particularly as football moves toward a selection committee and real playoff: SOS becomes more important. Nearer the middle, wins are more important, particularly around the 5- to 7- win range. There are coaches in both football and basketball who like the soft non-conference schedule so they can pad their win totals.

On the other hand, playing a tougher schedule arguably makes you better prepared for conference play, especially after a few years of doing it (so everyone on the roster has played tough games out of conference). Quality opponents almost always draw better than bad ones. Bowl money isn't as big of an issue when everything is split pretty much equally (sorry, new guys; you'll get your full shares eventually), and there's even an advantage to missing out on a cheap bowl when it means you don't eat the cost of unsold tickets and unbooked hotel rooms.

I prefer the latter. I'd rather have the same Purdue team go 4-8 and lose close games to top 20 competition than have them go 7-6 because they limped into Detroit and squeaked past a strong MAC team ... of course eventually they need to beat quality opponents, but that will come with practice.

Michael R. said...

Two words, "Bernie Miklasz". Who is he? Well he was the ass-clown writer for St. Louis Post-Dispatch that claimed Painter was going to Mizzou via confirmed sources. This time we are on the opposite side of the headline, be patient and don't listen to media hype.