New Mexico State will hold a press conference on Tuesday morning announcing the dismissal of head coach Hal Mumme from the football program.
Anyone who sees this as a surprise needs to see a doctor. This has been speculated to the point of no return and really was just a question of not if, but when.
NMSU will now conduct a coaching search, where a replacement will be found. What does the program need in order to rebound?
A coach who will instill toughness is one thing. Honestly, a lot of games the Aggies played under Mumme, it seemed like the team was close to getting over the hump. Critical mistakes at crucial junctures of games often undid the Aggies. The team seemed to be mentally weak a lot of times and finding a coach who will make them a tough-nosed football team would be a good start.
Unfortunately, Mumme's system on offense was very specific and required certain players to fit his particular mold. It's tough to really know what the team had talent-wise and what was done with smoke and mirrors. The receiver position was horribly over recruited, for instance, while the defensive backfield was often a patchwork operation on a week to week basis. Same with offensive and defensive line. The offensive line shuffled people in and out of the lineup on a weekly basis while the D-line was forced to pick up the scraps left behind. There was talent on the team but how it was distributed left much to be debated. Who knows how a new coach would handle such a dilemma.
One thing I can confidently say is that a new coach means building a new program. It's not such an easy solution as, say, fire a coach, hire a new one, and watch the wins pile up. The reality is that NMSU has been trying to find the right formula for success for some time now. The hope is that a new coach is brought in with tremendous leadership skills, can inspire, motivate and, ultimately, change the losing culture surrounding the team. It is not an easy task what-so-ever. But it is not impossible either.