Sunday, December 4, 2011

Panthers Lose Three Assistants

The university today announced that co-offensive coordinator Calvin Magee, tight end coach Tony Dews, and secondary coach Tony Gibson will not be back on the coaching staff, presumably to join former boss Rich Rodriguez at Arizona.

To be honest, it's not unexpected and it's not a significant loss.  There are many quality coaches around and the way I look at it, if they don't want to be at Pitt then they will not be helping the program.  The fact that they were clearly using Pitt for a paycheck until Rodriguez got a job, yet still recruited Michigan transfers to join them, is all you need to know about the character of the three.  Of course they aren't the only coaches who do such things, but that still doesn't make it right.

As far as actual coaching skills, Dews coached tight ends and the Panthers hardly even use the position so that's clearly not a big deal.  Gibson was a good recruiter and his secondary performed well this year, but he has been a lighting rod for criticism at both West Virginia and Michigan for his poor coaching skills.  In fact, at both places he is still disliked.  Magee has a reputation as an excellent offensive coordinator but he clearly wanted to be the one and only coordinator and Todd Graham does not operate that way.

In recruiting, there could be some losses, and in fact I would be surprised if at least one or two doesn't waver, if not decommit.  But as long as Graham quickly finds quality replacements, he could replace any  defectors with recruits that the new assistants have been pursuing.

Bottom line, in the short term it may cause some problems, but in the long term, the Panthers will probably be better off.  Especially if the administration again opens up the checkbook for assistants.

23 comments:

  1. I doubt any of the current commits picked pitt because of Gibson or Magee. However, Dews was a really good recruiter. It might hurt us with Ryan Watson and Bam Bradley, but it seems like this staff recruits more as a team than the last staff.

    I don't think Magee approaches offenses quite the same way Graham does. He seems to be more run focused. Do you think Graham hires another co-coordinator or promotes Norvell? I don't think Norvell is ready yet.

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  2. Graham likes to have co-cordinators so I assume he will do that again.

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  3. Seth Littrel the OC from Arizona is available. Trade perhaps. Dude understands the spread.

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  4. Hopefully Graham will take advantage of the opportunity and bring in someone with stronger local ties than Gibson. I just don't see anything impressive about the guy.

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  5. Not upset that these guys left. You knew they were here only to collect paychecks. Hope Coach Graham gets more long term replacements.

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  6. Chris - It's posts like these that cause people to label you a homer. This is clearly going to hurt the program. It's not good for the offensive guys to just continually recycle coaches. Ask Alex Smith what happens when you get new coaches every single year.

    Furthermore, this will hurt recruiting...period.

    As for your argument that you don't want guys who don't want to be here...um, how do you the new coaches they hire actually want to be here? Couldn't they just be using this as a paycheck until something better opens up? I hate when people can't admit something is wrong with the program they love. But, losing these coaches is just that. Deal with it Chris and take off your blue and gold glasses.

    PS - Enjoy Birmingham v. SMU. What a joke.

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  7. Sorry, but if you think this clearly hurts the program than maybe you should just admit that you have something against Pitt. Losing three coaches who have been in your program exactly one year hurts nothing, especially when two of them are not even considered good coaches.

    People like you who post on the internet are people I never really understand. Either you are not a Pitt fan and just go on Pitt websites to cause trouble because you're pathetic, hateful, and miserable in your life. Or you're a Pitt fan who is so self-loathing that you can't help but see the negative in every single thing related to Pitt. Which is it?

    As for being a homer, that's maybe the most laughable thing I've ever heard. If anything, Pitt fans get on me for being so negative. It just so happens that at the current time, Pitt has a good basketball coach and just may have a good football coach. I'm not going to say they don't just so that people like you can get your jollies by hating.

    I'm not saying you have to be happy with the program or with Graham. To each their own. I just don't get the nastiness that seems to be out there for a guy who overcame many, many obstacles to do at the very least a decent job. You would think this guy was left a treasure trove of talent and went 2-10. The truth is, the talent level was mediocre, there were a lot of injuries, and they guy had enough respect from his players that they never quit on him. At the very least, I think any rational person would at least say that they are still unsure of the guy. But to act like he's a failure, like some of the media and many of the so-called fans have, is just uninformed and kind of pathetic if you want to know the truth. It stinks of something more underhanded and sad.

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  8. Chris, How do u think this effects in Getting next yr's big recruits including Foster? Also will some of the local high school coaches take it hard that Pitt is losing western pa 's guy. I personally never was a huge Magee fan. I did not think it was a great match with Graham's style of offense.

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  9. Gibson would not effect Foster one iota. Gibson was a good recruiter but there are hundreds of good recruiters out there. As for the local area the coaches honestly wouldn't care at all. The local kids visit Pitt for years so the whole staff and entire team recruit the local kids.

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  10. How radioactive are the Penn State assistants? Is there anyone on staff far enough away from the unpleasantness and good enough to hire?

    This is not an advertisement for Tom Bradley.

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  11. Chris,

    You mention Pitt needs to open the checkbooks. How competitive is Pitt compared to salaries of coordinators and position coaches from Acc and other schools. I thought the money issue significantly improved. Not Alabama level but the high end with other teams in other conferences.

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  12. Why all the anonymous posters on this blog? Using a name is easy. Type your post, select "Name/URL" from the Comment As pulldown menu, and type in a name. Makes for a much better dialogue...

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  13. On 9/29/2011 Chris Dokish said this: Pitt's current co-offensive coordinators are Mike Norvell and Calvin Magee. Norvell, who is about to turn 30 in less than two weeks, is considered one of the best young assistant coaches in the country and coaches the passing game. At Tulsa, he was the passing coordinator last season as the Golden Hurricane finished 13th in the nation in passing, and 5th in total offense. Magee's rushing offense finished in the top four all three seasons he was the coordinator at West Virginia, and he was also named the national Assistant Coach of the Year. At Michigan, Magee's final offense led the Big Ten and finished eight nationally. Throw in quarterback coach Todd Dodge, who just happens to be the most legendary high school coach in Texas football history, not to mention a well respected offensive mind and quarterback guru, and you can see that there is no reason why Pitt's offense shouldn't eventually be amongst the best in the country. I don't care what the offense looks like now, there is no way this amount of talent won't eventually get it done offensively at Pitt.

    On 12/04/2011 Chris Dokish said this: It's not a significant loss to lose those 3 assistants.

    Do explain Chris because this is a 180 in thinking.

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  14. Anon --

    Uh, only one of the coaches you listed in leaving, so it is really a 60 degree turn.

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  15. He hasn't disagreed with Magee being a good coach and Norvell is still on the team. He actually understands why Magee is leaving (wants his own offense). The other two are replaceable. A secondary coach and a TE's coach with a team the doesn't have TE's. Come on! Where is the 180 dumb ass?

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  16. 1. I never said Magee wasn't good. I said Gibson and Dews were easily replaceable. All I said about Magee was that if he doesn't want to be here, then it's best if he wasn't here.

    2. I said "...there is no reason why Pitt's offense shouldn't eventually be amongst the best in the country. I don't care what the offense looks like now, there is no way this amount of talent won't eventually get it done offensively at Pitt." That's true. If those three stayed at Pitt, then they would have EVENTUALLY led Pitt to a great offense. Now Magee is gone and he has to be replaced by somebody at least as good. And that's possible. And if he is replaced by somebody at least as good then I STILL say Pitt's offense will eventually be excellent.

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  17. What does Anonymous want us to do now that Magee is leaving, go back to a pro-style offense. It is Graham's offense. He is head coach. It stops with him and coaches leave, especially when you are not where you want to be in a football program yet. New young coaches also arrive and I choose to beleive the Graham's offense what not a fluke or someone's else is doing. Graham knows alot of good people and I am starting to think that he is a genuine guy and will not eave Pitt until he has made good on his word. He has made some mistakes at Pitt, but I do not think his offense will be an issue going foward.

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  18. Seriously....what gives with Pitt fans? I have lived in Gainesville (went to UF), Columbus, and Austin, and I have never since such self loathing as what I have seen from Pitt fans over the past couple years. Its guys like the poster above who just drive me nuts. Its like some fans of the university revel in failure, they expect the worse, and never see progress...no matter how obvious it may appear. Its downright pathetic sometimes. Its guys like the poster above who believe Pitt can never be a top program nationwide, can never compete with the likes of Ohio, Florida, Texas, etc., that will never be taken seriously because they do not have an on-campus stadium. Its the same guys who complain about the offensive scheme Graham is trying to implement, that he is to cocky or arrogant, and that he is to hard on his players (see comments related to Tino).

    The reality is that Pitt can be a dominant player on a national stage, doesn't need an on-campus stadium (please see Miami and USC), and is doing the right thing by bringing in a coach like Graham. I hate to say this, but when I see Graham at his press conferences, I see an SEC coach. If you think he is arrogant, cocky, tough on his players in calling them out, then you havent seen anything. I cringe to think how someone like the "anonymous" commentator above would react to a Nick Saban, Muschamp, or god forbid...a Steve Spurrier.

    Good things are happening at Pitt. You have a coach who was on the radar of the SEC. You have a facility that is shared by you and the freaking PITTSBURGH STEELERS for goodness sake! Your coach is finally changing the culture of the program....that they need to have a killer instinct, they should win every time they take the field, that they should consider themselves a national player aspiring to be a BCS champion. The guy is a winner, give him and the program some time.

    P.S. Chris, love the blog....keep up the good work!

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  19. Totally agree, RJR. Pitt fans like the ones you describe are embarressments. Pitt won in both football AND basketball over the weekend, but you wouldn't think so. These Pitt fans can't be happy unless Pitt wins all of its games, and not only that but plays mistake free and crushes the opponent. Even then I am not so sure.

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  20. Hopefully, one of the dearly departing is to blame for that coined phrase we Pitt fans love so much: "Tino Sunseri gives us the best chance to win."

    I'll die a happy man if I never hear THAT again!

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  21. Doke:

    Zeise said we might lose a couple recruits who have given us verbals for next year (2012) as a result of these coaches leaving. Do you know who he might be talking about?

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  22. I doubt any of them go to Arizona because it's too far away so that's a plus. Maybe one or two decide to look elsewhere, but it won't be any major recruit I wouldn't think.

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  23. I assume you go to all the games and talk to all the coaches at practices, so can you comment on how the other coaches on the staff perceived these three?

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