View Full Version : OT - Russ Pennell and Arizona

03-22-2009, 12:54 PM
At the start of the season, some people felt Arizona was not going to be good enough to make the NCAA tourney. Especially with Lute's sudden retirement, and some ex-AAU coach taking over the reigns as an interim guy.

Some people didn't feel the Wildcats deserved to be in the NCAA tournament based on their resume and lack of road wins.

Don't look now, but the Arizona Wildcats are headed to the sweet 16. And if Louisville advances to the sweet 16 today, I wouldn't put it past Arizona to beat them. Pitino's crew is a talented but highly erratic team that has lost to teams that are less talented than Zona.

At what point does Mr. Livengood seriously consider Pennell to be a legit candidate for his men's basketball coaching position? Part of me still feels that assistant Mike Dunlap might be the real genuis behind the operation, but Pennell is proving to be a guy that has gotten the Cats to play harder and smarter than Kevin O'Neill or Lute managed to do in recent years.

03-22-2009, 01:40 PM
Pennell deserves a chance to be the long-term solution in Arizona, assuming he wants it. To step in to that situation and make a deep tourney run in the face of every analyst saying "Arizona shouldn't be in the tournament" is impressive.

Most importantly, it would finally shut down the talk about Arizona luring Few down to Tucson!

03-22-2009, 05:59 PM
Part of me still feels that assistant Mike Dunlap might be the real genuis behind the operation,
On my long drive back from NM, some talking radio heads were saying the same thing. I can't remember if it was ESPN or FOX. They said Dunlap was responsible for the X's and O's and bench coaching.

03-22-2009, 06:24 PM
Here's an article (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/andy_staples/03/22/arizona.dunlap/index.html?eref=sircrc) from SI discussing how well the two men work together - the hard work they've done to make it work.

Sunday, Mike Dunlap stood in the middle of a joyous Arizona locker room. The 12th-seeded Wildcats had punched their tickets to the Sweet 16 with a 71-57 win against Cleveland State, and the man who refused to accept an interim tag couldn't be happier for them. "It's a beautiful story," Dunlap said. "It's a story that could have gone left or could have gone right."

Instead, the story will continue this week in Indianapolis. The last team into the NCAA tournament is one of the last 16 alive thanks to players who refused to quit and coaches who refused to allow their egos to hamper the development of young men they grew to adore.

At times Sunday, Pennell and Dunlap stood and paced the sideline. During timeouts, Pennell sat in a chair and dispensed his wisdom. Dunlap took a knee alongside and dispensed his. To someone who hadn't seen the Wildcats play, it would have been nearly impossible to determine which was the head coach.

On the same site there is also an article (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/andy_staples/03/21/arizona.coach/index.html) about the head coach Pennell...

03-22-2009, 06:34 PM
He wants a big time currently successful (this year) elite program head coach...you should hear him, you would swear he was a chicken...BZ has assured me that Few will definitely, positively, absolutely not go there...