Now that the dust has finally settled, or at least is in the process of settling, on the coaching search, and Jerry Kill is beginning to hold down the fort over in Dinkytown, we can breathe a little bit.
No matter what we think about the coaching search process, Joel Maturi's over-promise/under-deliver approach, and whether or not a late panic set in once other team's seasons started ending, Jerry Kill is out football coach, and most of Gold Country seems pleasantly, if not reluctantly, surprised and satisfied.
Still there are a lot of questions still lingering in my mind. Both about the coaching search, and the future. I don't pretend to know that answers to any of these questions, nor do I expect that we'll ever get answers to all of them, but, after the jump, are some of the questions I've been batting around.
*If Joel Maturi immediately regretted making the "Tubby Smith-type hire" comment, why was he silent for seven weeks about it? Making that statement set a horrible expectation, and right up until the day that Jerry Kill was announced as our new coach, Maturi, and Bob Bruinincks for that matter, never made any statements to set a more realistic explanation. Why?
*Al Golden was on the radar of Gopher fans from day 1, but the concern was that Golden might be holding out for the Penn State job after JoPa retires. It seemed like a reasonable concern until Golden agreed to take the Miami job. So the question has to be asked, was Golden offered the job?
*Urban Meyer made the Florida coaching position available by resigning again, this time for good. Florida wasted no time in identifying and naming Will Muschamp as their new head coach. Florida was going to be able to get nearly any coach they wanted, and yet, they looked to a big time college coordinator for their next leader. By contrast the Minnesota search, as far as we know, focused only on current head coaches, which most Gopher fans seemed to support. But if Muschamp was so attractive to Florida, was he also on our radar? Was he contacted? If he wasn't, the question I would ask Gopher fans would be to take yourself back to the day Kill was hired, remove how you feel about the hire today, and ask yourself honestly if you would have been happier that day if you had learned Will Muschamp was our new coach?
*What role did Bob Bruinincks lame-duck status as president play in potential coaches willingness to seriously consider the Gopher job?
*What role did Joel Maturi's "Tubby Smith-type hire" comment play in potential coaches willingness to seriously consider the Gopher job?
*How many of the candidates contacted by the U or the search firm spoke with Glen Mason and/or Tim Brewster about the job?
*The University of Minnesota named Eric Kaler as the next President of the University of Minnesota. What role, if any, did Eric Kaler play in the evaluation of coaching candidates?
*How soon after Kaler takes over at the U can we expect to hear an announcement that Joel Maturi's will not get a contract extension with the University of Minnesota?
Again, I don't expect we'll ever know answers to many of these questions, but I'd be curious what your thoughts are.