October 17, 2013

Could this man be our next head coach?



This is Pete Lembo.  Yes, he looks like a putz.  Yes, it's ironic to consider that his Ball State Cardinals coming to Scott Stadium and trouncing our Hoos could have accelerated Mike London's ouster, and then Lembo could slide into the vacancy.

But you should know that this guy has won everywhere he's coached, he has built programs - successful programs - from the ground up, and that he absolutely is going to land a BCS conference head coaching job soon, probably this offseason.

The more I consider realistic and viable coaching candidates, the more I float back to Pete Lembo.  He's below the Texas-USC line, but probably on par with the UVAs and UConns of the world, when it comes to being a potential candidate.

Anyway, you should read THIS INTERVIEW from a week ago.  I dare you to disagree with me that he'd be a great candidate to step into this mess at UVA and start cleaning it up.

Meanwhile, I have been doing a lot of reading up on UConn's coaching search.  Virginia has better facilities, more money behind its program, a [much] better and more stable conference, much better football history and tradition, and a higher ceiling for success, but in a lot of ways we are quite similar to the Huskies at this point in time.  In other words, I think there are a lot of parallels to be drawn from their list of candidates to our list of potential candidates.  So if you're looking to do some freelance reading of your own, a simple Google search of "UConn coaching candidates" yields a treasure trove of information.


And for those of you still hanging on to a shred of hope that Mike London can turn it around here at Virginia... well... God bless your tender little hearts.  The world needs people like you.  Keep up the good work.



7 comments:

  1. 100% on board with Lembo after reading that inteview. He has a resume that matches our needs, it would just be a step up. Which is another thing he has proven he can do. I want a coach that has those notches in his belt already. If someone is going to fail at UVA, I don't want his history to be an excuse. Lembo's certainly wouldn't be. I've been thinking about UVA as a stepping stone job. I've decided I'm cool with that. Two reasons: 1) If someone poaches a coach from us: guess what? That means we're winning, on the rise, etc. 2) The program will be in a better position to get even more qualified coaches in that scenario, since we'll be "up". DIIA to ACC was just too big of a jump for London. The rah rah worked on the recruiting trail, but its failed on the field. Give me Lembo's track record, easy.

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    1. Thanks for the comments, Nathan! I'm with you on just about everything. It hurts the pride to think of Virginia as a stepping stone job, but it's only a stepping stone into one of the top-20 or so programs in the nation, something like Texas or Michigan or Florida. The reality is that every mid- and lower-tier BCS conference school is in that boat, doesn't matter if you've sucked for a decade or been awesome for a decade. Just watch and see if Texas fires Mack Brown and hires Art Briles away from Baylor.

      Sometimes you'll luck your way into a loyalist like Chris Petersen at Boise State, but those are rare. In college football, you just have to take winning however you can get it, even if it means a new coaching search every 5-6-7 years.

      After Mike London is through here, UVA will be perched at the edge of a cliff. Pull it together, start winning, and back off the ledge... or plummet to our death, and end up being like Duke was from 1995-2010. I'm convinced that the only thing that really matters is the head coach. Get the right one (like Duke did with Cutcliffe), and everything else works out.

      The interesting thing is that when London gets canned -- either at the end of this season or the end of next season, our cupboard will be fairly well stocked with talent. The next coach - if he's a good one, like Pete Lembo - should be able to step in and start winning right away. (I'm talking "winning" to the tune of 6 or 7 wins and modest bowl games, not ACC championships and playoff appearances.)

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  2. Kendall could you please answer this for me. If Pete Lembo is the head coach at UVA next season you will realistically expect us to win _____ games.

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    1. Good question. Our schedule is...

      Home Games:
      UCLA
      Richmond
      Kent State
      Louisville
      Miami
      Pittsburgh
      North Carolina

      Away Games:
      BYU
      Florida State
      Duke
      Georgia Tech
      Virginia Tech

      My expectation would be set at 5-7 against that [very tough] schedule. At least we know Lembo knows how to beat teams from the MAC, so chalk up the Kent State game as a win!

      Note that the schedule listed above is exactly the reason I feel like London won't make it to see the 2015 season. Even if he keeps his job after this terrible 2013 season, he won't put together a winning record against that schedule you see above. And no winning season in Year Five = automatic dismissal, imho.

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    2. I'm not as worried about the schedule as you are I think. But I also think our talent is still really good, it's just being underutilized by the staff. Check this out.

      UCLA<<New QB
      Richmond
      Kent State
      Louisville<<New QB
      Miami<<New QB
      Pittsburgh<<New QB
      North Carolina<<New QB
      BYU
      Florida State
      Duke
      Georgia Tech
      Virginia Tech<<New QB

      That's a lot of fresh faces against what should be a pretty stout defense.

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  3. On gchat, Mike just said "man, I want a nerd coach so badly." And he nailed it. I WANT A NERD COACH, TOO! And that's Pete Lembo.

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    1. AHEM. Dropped this is in the podcast.

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