This morning Minutemen fans get to wake up to some kind words from a prominent collegiate football coach. The blog and message board driven discussion was not all for nothing. Former Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach spoke with Matty V. after his national radio show on Tuesday evening. He talked candidly about the opening in Amherst.
“I don’t know a ton about it but I think anybody would love the job. I’ve never had a bad job and I’m sure UMass is a good one. I think a lot of people would be interested in it. I do think it’s exciting. I think especially in the backyard of the New England Patriots, who do some very similar things, I think that would be exciting too. Ultimately we’ll have to see how it unfolds.”
He is clearly open to interviewing.
Whether another school ends up swooping in with a better offer will remain to be seen. That said, Leach seems to place value on many different aspects when it comes to his next gig.
“I think that any time you look at a job, it’s like buying a house. You want something that’s undervalued that you can provide something to. Building is always exciting. Massachusetts and where it’s located in that part of the country would be exciting too.”
UMass might score high in a lot of the areas of concern that Leach mentions. There are some perks that UMass will be able to provide its next coach that other universities will not have the ability to offer. Leach seems to understand this, right off the bat. It’s a unique situation right now with the team splitting time between Amherst and Foxboro.
Leach also added that its about more than just having a football team. “I want (the school) to want to win at football, not just sign up for football. I want them to value graduation rate,” he added.
The hiring of a coach like Mike Leach would be about the strongest statement the University of Massachusetts administration could make regarding their commitment to winning in the MAC.
I believe we are seeing the gift that Robert Kraft gave the university start to pay off already. Playing in Gillette opens doors for this coaching search that would have been tightly shut in McGuirk was still the full-time home of the team.
Of course, there are other major openings on the table such as Arizona State and Ole Miss. At this point, there is a large chance that those schools will overlook Leach in the end. We have seen other universities do so before. The Minutemen must hope that continues to be the case — especially a job like Ole Miss. That’d be a tempting one, for sure. If given an opportunity to converse with coach Leach, the University of Massachusetts administration must diligently look into Leach as a serious head coaching candidate.
Leach is a proven winner, and has specifically thrived when it comes creating a high power offense — a staple in the MAC in recent seasons.
Mike Leach’s excitement is getting me excited. It is indeed a happy thanksgiving this morning.
[via Hampshire Gazette]