Thursday, March 19, 2009

John Beilein Should have been Big Ten Coach of the Year!

But he wasn't. The media picked Penn State's head coach Ed DeChellis. The Big Ten coaches choice was Tom Izzo. Where was John B?
Ed DeChellis is a deserving candidate. His Penn State team came back off a 16-16 2007-08 season and went 23-11 this year. His team finished tied for 5th in the Big Ten and is still alive in the second round of the NIT.

Tom Izzo: Everyone knows there is a ton of pressure to win where your on top. You always get every one's best game every night (See Lloyd Carr's career for further evidence). So I don't have a problem giving the award to the coach on the best team. They were expected to win the regular season Big Ten and they did just that.

Ed's Penn State team went .500 last year. Michigan went 10-22 in the 2007-08 season. Michigan this year is 20-13 with wins over Duke, UCLA, Purdue, Illinois, but more importantly an invitation to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 11 years. The argument for Ed is a little stronger with Penn State's 10-8 Big Ten record against Michigan's 9-9, but I'm pretty sure Ed would exchange that one win for an NCAA invite.

To say the cupboard was bare in 2007 is an understatement for the Michigan Basketball Program. They had DeShawn Sims a young sophomore and a highly ranked Freshman named Manny Harris. The rest of the hold overs from the Tommy Amaker days were either not buying into the new system or didn't care to. John took close to nothing and made it into something in just a year. To me that is a huge accomplishment which deserves the Big Ten Coach of the Year Award.

But John won't have any new hardware in his office this year, but he can hold his head high tonight at 7:10 when Michigan plays under the big spot light of the NCAA tournament.

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