My thoughts on the events of the past week

MinerManiac

MI Hall of Famer
Jun 28, 2001
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Obviously, a lot has happened in regards to the Miner Men's Basketball Team since Thursday. And, as often happens, I didn't have the time to compose replies to the events as they unfolded, and now I don't want to reply to multiple different threads. Instead, I am composing all my various thoughts into one thread. My apologies if this comes out as disjointed.

My favorite line of this past week was from UTEPMiners8106: "Tim Floyd just went full Rabedeaux." I, too, thought of Rabedeaux when I heard that McSwiggan would become the fourth player to leave the team this off season, joining Romine, Moore, and B. Jones. It reminded me of 2002, when we learned that four players that we were counting on for the 2002-03 season would not be coming: Keion Kindred, Antone Jarrell, Nick Enzweiler, and Luke Martin. Off course, things are a little different - all four of the guys that Rab lost were potential starters, while Floyd lost one starter (Moore), one potential starter (McSwiggan), one potential future starter (B. Jones), and one project (Romine). Still, losing that many guys so quickly did bring back bad memories from the Rabedeaux era.

I find Floyd's spin to be tasteless. The classy thing to do would be to say that the Miners would miss B. Jones and McSwiggan, and to wish them well. After all, he must have had high hopes for B. Jones to pull Caldwell's scholarship, and back in March he was raving about McSwiggan. Also, I don't buy his spin for next season: replacing Romine with Silva is just swapping one project for another, and at least McSwiggan had a year of practice with his teammates, the four guards that we have signed will all be true freshmen. Also, I don't think that K. Jones will be the answer to all of our inside woes: we are essentially swapping him and Vint, and while we all hope that he is stronger defensively and on the boards than Hooper, it is doubtful that he will show the offensive game that the latter displayed this past season. It seems to me that, unless we add a surprise stud at the 4 or 5 spot (and it's getting really late to be able to do so), we will continue to struggle inside, and we're not likely to be near as strong nor as deep in the backcourt next year. I see a real ugly season ahead.

A lot has been said about Floyd and recruiting. Many wonder why we haven't yet signed a quality big man, as, like I've said, Silva appears to be a project, and the rest of the class consists of guards. I have to imagine that Floyd has tried, hard, to find and sign a quality big. It's not like he's clueless as to our needs next year. I appears that he has simply failed to do so. He seems to have completely lost the magic he once had as a recruiter.

Can we please stop blaming conference affiliation for Floyd's recruiting woes? As I've said before, if the issue was a lack of out of conference wins against top teams, the conference affiliation issue would at least be worthy of discussion. But we finished in sixth place in CUSA this year. Can anyone tell me UAB's conference affiliation when they recruited their roster? What about Middle Tennessee? LA Tech? ODU? Marshall? While I am hoping and praying that we do someday get an MWC invite, the conference excuse for Floyd's recruiting issues is a cop out.

I agree with much of what ProjectO said, but do disagree with him on some of his player evaluations. As has been pointed out, Caldwell was a walk-on, not a scholarship player. Even then, he had a bigger impact on this team than several of the scholarship players did last season. His defense, hustle, and ability to make a timely offensive rebound despite being only 6'3" helped us win some games last year

Also, count me in as one of those who thinks that ProjectO was way too hard on Bohannon, who was, BTW, Barbee's recruit. Bo's tendency to get in Floyd's doghouse did hurt the team, as did the way he cowered when playing against a physical center. However, Bo had fantastic post skills, the best we've had on this team since Caracter, and he really stepped up after we lost the three guards to gambling in his senior season. In fact, he played really well that season, winning a couple of CUSA Player of the Week honors, and was a huge reason why we were still in a CUSA regular season title hunt late into that conference season. Also, during that stretch, he even held his own against physical big men. It's true that he never really won anything while he was here, but basketball continues to be a team game, and he was never on a great team. Oh, and as to the comments on John Tofi, I completely agree: I loved that guy, and he is vastly underrated.

I do agree with ProjectO that, when tabulating the number of Floyd's recruits that left early, you need to add in Hunter and Moore. As to the argument that no one's holds Calipari's early departures against him, there is a huge difference: Calipari's early departures are typically drafted in the first round of the NBA draft. Vince went undrafted, and I highly doubt that Moore's name will be called this year.

Completing my thoughts on ProjectO's post, Stefon Jackson and Randy Culpepper belong on the list of great UTEP basketball players. DJ's inclusion needs no explanation, and, while Culpepper's shot selection frequently drove me crazy, he did earn first team all conference honors twice, and is one of only two Miners to have scored over 2,000 career points. Two more that I thought had the potential to be on that list were Julian Washburn and Vince Hunter. Unfortunately Julian's offensive game never progressed after his freshman season, and Vince didn't stick around long enough to develop a strong post and mid-range game. These two have to settle for being very good, but not great, players.

I will shortly go to my poll from last season and change my vote. I had initially put that Floyd needed a CUSA title and/or an NCAA Tournament appearance by the end of next season or he should be fired. This was when I still had some hope for next season. With Moore gone, Omega still in the doghouse, McSwiggan gone, and relying on only the arrival of K. Jones and a hopefully healthy and vastly improved Willms for frontcourt help, I see no way that next season won't prove to be worse than this past one. I will post my mea culpas if I'm wrong.
 

e-rick

Starter
Feb 1, 2006
393
71
28
Obviously, a lot has happened in regards to the Miner Men's Basketball Team since Thursday. And, as often happens, I didn't have the time to compose replies to the events as they unfolded, and now I don't want to reply to multiple different threads. Instead, I am composing all my various thoughts into one thread. My apologies if this comes out as disjointed.

My favorite line of this past week was from UTEPMiners8106: "Tim Floyd just went full Rabedeaux." I, too, thought of Rabedeaux when I heard that McSwiggan would become the fourth player to leave the team this off season, joining Romine, Moore, and B. Jones. It reminded me of 2002, when we learned that four players that we were counting on for the 2002-03 season would not be coming: Keion Kindred, Antone Jarrell, Nick Enzweiler, and Luke Martin. Off course, things are a little different - all four of the guys that Rab lost were potential starters, while Floyd lost one starter (Moore), one potential starter (McSwiggan), one potential future starter (B. Jones), and one project (Romine). Still, losing that many guys so quickly did bring back bad memories from the Rabedeaux era.

I find Floyd's spin to be tasteless. The classy thing to do would be to say that the Miners would miss B. Jones and McSwiggan, and to wish them well. After all, he must have had high hopes for B. Jones to pull Caldwell's scholarship, and back in March he was raving about McSwiggan. Also, I don't buy his spin for next season: replacing Romine with Silva is just swapping one project for another, and at least McSwiggan had a year of practice with his teammates, the four guards that we have signed will all be true freshmen. Also, I don't think that K. Jones will be the answer to all of our inside woes: we are essentially swapping him and Vint, and while we all hope that he is stronger defensively and on the boards than Hooper, it is doubtful that he will show the offensive game that the latter displayed this past season. It seems to me that, unless we add a surprise stud at the 4 or 5 spot (and it's getting really late to be able to do so), we will continue to struggle inside, and we're not likely to be near as strong nor as deep in the backcourt next year. I see a real ugly season ahead.

A lot has been said about Floyd and recruiting. Many wonder why we haven't yet signed a quality big man, as, like I've said, Silva appears to be a project, and the rest of the class consists of guards. I have to imagine that Floyd has tried, hard, to find and sign a quality big. It's not like he's clueless as to our needs next year. I appears that he has simply failed to do so. He seems to have completely lost the magic he once had as a recruiter.

Can we please stop blaming conference affiliation for Floyd's recruiting woes? As I've said before, if the issue was a lack of out of conference wins against top teams, the conference affiliation issue would at least be worthy of discussion. But we finished in sixth place in CUSA this year. Can anyone tell me UAB's conference affiliation when they recruited their roster? What about Middle Tennessee? LA Tech? ODU? Marshall? While I am hoping and praying that we do someday get an MWC invite, the conference excuse for Floyd's recruiting issues is a cop out.

I agree with much of what ProjectO said, but do disagree with him on some of his player evaluations. As has been pointed out, Caldwell was a walk-on, not a scholarship player. Even then, he had a bigger impact on this team than several of the scholarship players did last season. His defense, hustle, and ability to make a timely offensive rebound despite being only 6'3" helped us win some games last year

Also, count me in as one of those who thinks that ProjectO was way too hard on Bohannon, who was, BTW, Barbee's recruit. Bo's tendency to get in Floyd's doghouse did hurt the team, as did the way he cowered when playing against a physical center. However, Bo had fantastic post skills, the best we've had on this team since Caracter, and he really stepped up after we lost the three guards to gambling in his senior season. In fact, he played really well that season, winning a couple of CUSA Player of the Week honors, and was a huge reason why we were still in a CUSA regular season title hunt late into that conference season. Also, during that stretch, he even held his own against physical big men. It's true that he never really won anything while he was here, but basketball continues to be a team game, and he was never on a great team. Oh, and as to the comments on John Tofi, I completely agree: I loved that guy, and he is vastly underrated.

I do agree with ProjectO that, when tabulating the number of Floyd's recruits that left early, you need to add in Hunter and Moore. As to the argument that no one's holds Calipari's early departures against him, there is a huge difference: Calipari's early departures are typically drafted in the first round of the NBA draft. Vince went undrafted, and I highly doubt that Moore's name will be called this year.

Completing my thoughts on ProjectO's post, Stefon Jackson and Randy Culpepper belong on the list of great UTEP basketball players. DJ's inclusion needs no explanation, and, while Culpepper's shot selection frequently drove me crazy, he did earn first team all conference honors twice, and is one of only two Miners to have scored over 2,000 career points. Two more that I thought had the potential to be on that list were Julian Washburn and Vince Hunter. Unfortunately Julian's offensive game never progressed after his freshman season, and Vince didn't stick around long enough to develop a strong post and mid-range game. These two have to settle for being very good, but not great, players.

I will shortly go to my poll from last season and change my vote. I had initially put that Floyd needed a CUSA title and/or an NCAA Tournament appearance by the end of next season or he should be fired. This was when I still had some hope for next season. With Moore gone, Omega still in the doghouse, McSwiggan gone, and relying on only the arrival of K. Jones and a hopefully healthy and vastly improved Willms for frontcourt help, I see no way that next season won't prove to be worse than this past one. I will post my mea culpas if I'm wrong.
Memphis was in the league at the time!
 

miner661

MI Hall of Famer
Jun 28, 2001
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Memphis was in the league at the time!

Precisely. C-USA is a shell of its former self. Even Houston, SMU, and Tulsa were major upgrades to UTSA, UNT, FIU, FAU, etc... To say the ability to recruit and attract a higher level of talent hasn't suffered as a result of the conference being pilfered of its better schools is being disingenuous.
 

MinerManiac

MI Hall of Famer
Jun 28, 2001
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Precisely. C-USA is a shell of its former self. Even Houston, SMU, and Tulsa were major upgrades to UTSA, UNT, FIU, FAU, etc... To say the ability to recruit and attract a higher level of talent hasn't suffered as a result of the conference being pilfered of its better schools is being disingenuous.

Practically everyone wants us to move to the MWC, including me. But will that move help us win basketball games? Floyd hasn't been able to out recruit the likes of UAB, ODU, and LA Tech, despite the fact that they are in the same conference we are. Will a move to the MWC suddenly allow us to out recruit SDSU, UNLV, and the rest of that conference? I just don't see it happening.

Also, the truly great recruiters can consistently recruit beyond what you would expect based on their conference affiliation. No one will argue that the WCC compares to the PAC12, but Gonzaga consistently out recruits the majority of schools in the latter conference. Butler went to back to back championship games despite being in the Horizon League at the time. While the old WAC/MWC were solid conferences, they were far from elite ones, yet the Miner teams of the 80s and the Utes of the 90s/early 2000s didn't seem outmatched talent wise when facing bigger named opponents.

As an assistant coach, Floyd deservedly received a lot of credit for the talent on those 80s Miner teams. As head coach of UTEP he hasn't fared well against his conference mates. Unfortunately I don't see that changing, no matter whom his conference mates may be.
 
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unihorn

MI Miner Maniac
Dec 1, 2007
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Practically everyone wants us to move to the MWC, including me. But will that move help us win basketball games? Floyd hasn't been able to out recruit the likes of UAB, ODU, and LA Tech, despite the fact that they are in the same conference we are. Will a move to the MWC suddenly allow us to out recruit SDSU, UNLV, and the rest of that conference? I just don't see it happening.

Also, the truly great recruiters can consistently recruit beyond what you would expect based on their conference affiliation. No one will argue that the WCC compares to the PAC12, but Gonzaga consistently out recruits the majority of schools in the latter conference. Butler went to back to back championship games despite being in the Horizon League at the time. While the old WAC/MWC were solid conferences, they were far from elite ones, yet the Miner teams of the 80s and the Utes of the 90s/early 2000s didn't seem outmatched talent wise when facing bigger named opponents.

As an assistant coach, Floyd deservedly received a lot of credit for the talent on those 80s Miner teams. As head coach of UTEP he hasn't fared well against his conference mates. Unfortunately I don't see that changing, no matter whom his conference mates may be.

Also, hasn't the MW, like CUSA, been a one-bid league of late?

We'd play more of our natural and historical opponents, so the schedule would improve for most fans, but the move wouldn't be a cure-all.
 

JCorona

MI Miner Maniac
Jun 15, 2014
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Also, hasn't the MW, like CUSA, been a one-bid league of late?

We'd play more of our natural and historical opponents, so the schedule would improve for most fans, but the move wouldn't be a cure-all.
No.

2016- 1 bid
2015- 3 bids
2014- 2
2013- 5
2012- 4
2011- 3
2010- 4
2009- 2
2008- 2
2007- 2
2006- 2
2005- 2
2004- 3
2003- 3
2002- 3
 

unihorn

MI Miner Maniac
Dec 1, 2007
6,161
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No.

2016- 1 bid
2015- 3 bids
2014- 2
2013- 5
2012- 4
2011- 3
2010- 4
2009- 2
2008- 2
2007- 2
2006- 2
2005- 2
2004- 3
2003- 3
2002- 3

Ok, just last year -- that's another benefit then.
 

miner661

MI Hall of Famer
Jun 28, 2001
3,924
515
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Also, hasn't the MW, like CUSA, been a one-bid league of late?

We'd play more of our natural and historical opponents, so the schedule would improve for most fans, but the move wouldn't be a cure-all.

I don't believe anybody is claiming the move would be a "cure-all".

This last season was the first year in many the MWC didn't place multiple teams in the NCAA Tournament. It was a down year basketball-wise. UNM, UNLV, SDSU...none of them made the tournament for the first time in quite awhile. That won't be (and isn't) the norm. They normally have 2, 3, and even 4 dancing.

It is a much more attractive conference to the fans, the NCAA selection committee, prospective OOC opponents, and, I believe, also for recruits. Would a move there cure all of UTEP's ailments? No, of course not. Conference affiliation is just one facet of the many issues holding UTEP back. I truly believe CTF being his own worst enemy is the primary crux.
 

unihorn

MI Miner Maniac
Dec 1, 2007
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I don't believe anybody is claiming the move would be a "cure-all".

This last season was the first year in many the MWC didn't place multiple teams in the NCAA Tournament. It was a down year basketball-wise. UNM, UNLV, SDSU...none of them made the tournament for the first time in quite awhile. That won't be (and isn't) the norm. They normally have 2, 3, and even 4 dancing.

It is a much more attractive conference to the fans, the NCAA selection committee, prospective OOC opponents, and, I believe, also for recruits. Would a move there cure all of UTEP's ailments? No, of course not. Conference affiliation is just one facet of the many issues holding UTEP back. I truly believe CTF being his own worst enemy is the primary crux.

Ok, it would be a salve not a cure-all.
 

Minerforlife

MI Hall of Famer
Sep 11, 2013
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We spend more on basketball than anyone in Cusa. There is no excuse for being in the middle of the pack in a one bid league thats in the bottom third of basketball conferences. Right now we cant convince kids UTEP is a better place than, La Tech, Middle Tennessee and UAB. In MWC we wont outspend UNLV, SDSU, UNM or Colorado State in hoops. We also dont have the recent history or pedigree to match up with the top teams in the MWC. Floyd would get curbstomped in the MWC. There is no excuse for not being competitive in a bad conference where we outspend everyone.There is no reason we couldnt be competitive in the MWC. However, we wont win regardless of conference affiliation as long as Floyd is coaching. This is all on Floyd.
 
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MineroFanatico

MI Miner Maniac
Sep 11, 2015
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First of all, I'm all for realigning with our old conference foes. In moving to the MWC tho, the degree in which our level of recruit might rise, the rise in level of competition would be commensurate. In other words, I believe we would have access to a higher level of recruit for the most part, but equal to or lesser than our conference mates. Therefore making coaching even more of an X factor than it already is, for us to win.
 

JCorona

MI Miner Maniac
Jun 15, 2014
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I believe in the old saying show me who your friends are and I'll show you your future.

I know we don't have Marshall's football team or even old Memphis basketball team but this league is dragging us down with them.

We always say if we were competing for conference titles in both sports we would average 40/10k respectively. We have a ton of potential. We see teams like Western Kentucky host the championship with less than 20k in the stands and we know that if we hosted a football championship we would sell out the Sun Bowl.

My main point is if we continue in CUSA it will not be long until we finally lose our potential. By the time we do make a championship game we will be lucky to sell more than 30k tickets. Which is great for CUSA standards but we know we are so much better.
 

JeepJackson22

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Mar 12, 2007
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Just a quick mention of how I love the flow of this board now without any obvious trolls and enjoy coming on here regularly again to gain some new info and keep updated on UTEP sports (my best source as an out of towner) - ok, back to the good posting :)
 

ProjectO

Four-star recruit
Jun 13, 2012
97
33
18
Obviously, a lot has happened in regards to the Miner Men's Basketball Team since Thursday. And, as often happens, I didn't have the time to compose replies to the events as they unfolded, and now I don't want to reply to multiple different threads. Instead, I am composing all my various thoughts into one thread. My apologies if this comes out as disjointed.

My favorite line of this past week was from UTEPMiners8106: "Tim Floyd just went full Rabedeaux." I, too, thought of Rabedeaux when I heard that McSwiggan would become the fourth player to leave the team this off season, joining Romine, Moore, and B. Jones. It reminded me of 2002, when we learned that four players that we were counting on for the 2002-03 season would not be coming: Keion Kindred, Antone Jarrell, Nick Enzweiler, and Luke Martin. Off course, things are a little different - all four of the guys that Rab lost were potential starters, while Floyd lost one starter (Moore), one potential starter (McSwiggan), one potential future starter (B. Jones), and one project (Romine). Still, losing that many guys so quickly did bring back bad memories from the Rabedeaux era.

I find Floyd's spin to be tasteless. The classy thing to do would be to say that the Miners would miss B. Jones and McSwiggan, and to wish them well. After all, he must have had high hopes for B. Jones to pull Caldwell's scholarship, and back in March he was raving about McSwiggan. Also, I don't buy his spin for next season: replacing Romine with Silva is just swapping one project for another, and at least McSwiggan had a year of practice with his teammates, the four guards that we have signed will all be true freshmen. Also, I don't think that K. Jones will be the answer to all of our inside woes: we are essentially swapping him and Vint, and while we all hope that he is stronger defensively and on the boards than Hooper, it is doubtful that he will show the offensive game that the latter displayed this past season. It seems to me that, unless we add a surprise stud at the 4 or 5 spot (and it's getting really late to be able to do so), we will continue to struggle inside, and we're not likely to be near as strong nor as deep in the backcourt next year. I see a real ugly season ahead.

A lot has been said about Floyd and recruiting. Many wonder why we haven't yet signed a quality big man, as, like I've said, Silva appears to be a project, and the rest of the class consists of guards. I have to imagine that Floyd has tried, hard, to find and sign a quality big. It's not like he's clueless as to our needs next year. I appears that he has simply failed to do so. He seems to have completely lost the magic he once had as a recruiter.

Can we please stop blaming conference affiliation for Floyd's recruiting woes? As I've said before, if the issue was a lack of out of conference wins against top teams, the conference affiliation issue would at least be worthy of discussion. But we finished in sixth place in CUSA this year. Can anyone tell me UAB's conference affiliation when they recruited their roster? What about Middle Tennessee? LA Tech? ODU? Marshall? While I am hoping and praying that we do someday get an MWC invite, the conference excuse for Floyd's recruiting issues is a cop out.

I agree with much of what ProjectO said, but do disagree with him on some of his player evaluations. As has been pointed out, Caldwell was a walk-on, not a scholarship player. Even then, he had a bigger impact on this team than several of the scholarship players did last season. His defense, hustle, and ability to make a timely offensive rebound despite being only 6'3" helped us win some games last year

Also, count me in as one of those who thinks that ProjectO was way too hard on Bohannon, who was, BTW, Barbee's recruit. Bo's tendency to get in Floyd's doghouse did hurt the team, as did the way he cowered when playing against a physical center. However, Bo had fantastic post skills, the best we've had on this team since Caracter, and he really stepped up after we lost the three guards to gambling in his senior season. In fact, he played really well that season, winning a couple of CUSA Player of the Week honors, and was a huge reason why we were still in a CUSA regular season title hunt late into that conference season. Also, during that stretch, he even held his own against physical big men. It's true that he never really won anything while he was here, but basketball continues to be a team game, and he was never on a great team. Oh, and as to the comments on John Tofi, I completely agree: I loved that guy, and he is vastly underrated.

I do agree with ProjectO that, when tabulating the number of Floyd's recruits that left early, you need to add in Hunter and Moore. As to the argument that no one's holds Calipari's early departures against him, there is a huge difference: Calipari's early departures are typically drafted in the first round of the NBA draft. Vince went undrafted, and I highly doubt that Moore's name will be called this year.

Completing my thoughts on ProjectO's post, Stefon Jackson and Randy Culpepper belong on the list of great UTEP basketball players. DJ's inclusion needs no explanation, and, while Culpepper's shot selection frequently drove me crazy, he did earn first team all conference honors twice, and is one of only two Miners to have scored over 2,000 career points. Two more that I thought had the potential to be on that list were Julian Washburn and Vince Hunter. Unfortunately Julian's offensive game never progressed after his freshman season, and Vince didn't stick around long enough to develop a strong post and mid-range game. These two have to settle for being very good, but not great, players.

I will shortly go to my poll from last season and change my vote. I had initially put that Floyd needed a CUSA title and/or an NCAA Tournament appearance by the end of next season or he should be fired. This was when I still had some hope for next season. With Moore gone, Omega still in the doghouse, McSwiggan gone, and relying on only the arrival of K. Jones and a hopefully healthy and vastly improved Willms for frontcourt help, I see no way that next season won't prove to be worse than this past one. I will post my mea culpas if I'm wrong.

Great points as always and very informative.
 

JCorona

MI Miner Maniac
Jun 15, 2014
7,820
8,004
113
There's your problem, right there. Stop blaming everybody else for your problems and maybe start beating them...
While I do agree winning would cure our problems I have no power over it. I'm not the AD I'm not the coach I'm not a player I'm not a big money booster. I'm just a simple silver season ticket holder.

I do my part by attending every game paying for parking, concessions and my MAC donation. I wish I was a multi millionaire and I could donate more money to get better facilities or whatever we need to advance forward.
 

TrojanMiner

MI VIP
Dec 5, 2004
1,559
64
48
We're just not that good right now and for the foreseeable future. At this point, a change in coaching is probably the only thing that we can do. It's not $$$. It's coaching and recruiting. For as good as coach as CTF is, he is not proving that here and can we really afford to wait any longer????
 

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