By: Colin Chiles, who you can yell at on Twitter here: @ColinC27
Yesterday, Ohio State announced the unexpected firing of Head Coach Thad Matta. Matta took Ohio State to two final fours and a championship game (you may remember a rather large man named Greggggg Oden). Maybe more impressively, they were a 1 or a 2 seed for 6 of 8 straight seasons. But in the past few years Ohio State really devolved into a middling team with not a lot of hope and though it’s rather unusual to fire a coach this time of year, that’s what Ohio State did.
I have no idea if who they’re looking at, but if they are interested in Gregggggg Marshall, he should take the job. (You cannot convince me that this is the incorrect spelling of his name)
Yes, Wichita State just joined a new conference mostly due to the new heights achieved by Gregggggg.
Yes he’s got a promising team on his hands right now that will likely be a top 20 team all year next year.
Yes he can finally play conference competition that has a pulse with a group of teams that will provide actual challenges year in and year out, while still likely keeping the Shockers in the mix as a favorite each year.
Yes he’s already making 3 million a year base salary with a bonus potential that brings his potential single year earnings closer to 4 million.
All of those are really good reasons to stay. Honestly, they are.
But Ohio State and the Big 10 would be a big upgrade.
I’ve always gotten the feeling Gregggg was holding out for a big job. He’s taken interviews in the past, and the only one that he was both offered and apparently considered was the Alabama job and I’m unsure how serious he was about actually taking that offer (it was certainly some nice contract renegotiation leverage wasn’t it?).
It was well reported at that same time that Gregggggggggggg wanted the Texas job but they ultimately decided that they didn’t want him and hired Shaka Smart instead.
Ohio State may not be THE big job, but THE big job isn’t open very often, and when it is, it’s a very selective bunch that gets a look.
There’s probably 8 or 9 top tier jobs in the country, depending on how you rank them. In no particular order, here are the teams I see on that list:
Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina, Duke, Arizona, Indiana, UCLA, Michigan State, Syracuse and Louisville
(with apologies to Uconn, Texas, Maryland, Oregon and Florida)
So if you’re Gregggggg, why not raise your profile a significant step? Play on some more marquee Saturday night ESPN games. Play against other top 20 teams regularly, including a couple of teams on that list above here. Elevate the level of recruits you’re able to consistently bring in. Make a little bit more money while you’re at it too. (Thad was making 3.2 million and football coach Urban Meyer is making 6 million this year so they are not opposed to spending)
And then bolt when that top 8 job DOES come calling.
That’s the thing here – Ohio State is just another stepping stone taking him closer to where I believe that he wants to be. Could he jump there straight from WSU? Sure, if the situation were right. But if he were able to succeed at another school at a higher level, recruiting against more competitive programs? It just bolsters his resume.
He’s already proved everything he needs to prove at WSU. Yes, going to this new conference also bolsters his resume, but not as much and not in the same way. It’s not like they’re waiting for him to prove it, but if Gregggggg were able to take over another new program, make it his own and succeed, you can bet that’s the type of thing that the people hiring for that next big offer will notice.
I don’t know if Ohio State will come calling, but if they do, Greggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggggg should say yes.