Monday, December 1, 2008

It might as well be official

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.

9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Assuming Mumme's demise becomes official in the morning, I hope that the process for finding a new coach goes smoothly, and successfully.

I do believe that the NMSU position is one that can potentially be a big step up for the right candidate. Although the resources are small by FCS standards, they are much improved over what they were a few years ago.

However, there is a real risk that if the hire is an up-and-comer and they succeed, in two to four years we will be searching again. At lwast at that point, there could be some victories to build on. It is too bad that Mumme never lived up to the expectaions that surrounded his hiring.

Now, the challenge has been laid down to all those fans who said they would stay away until Mumme was canned. It is time to get out there and support teh team. To get a winnig tradition also takes a winning attitude: in the coaches, in the players, in the fans. We should be able to average 20,000 at our home games. We also need to develop a traveling fan base. With the exception of UTEP or UNM, I don't think I've ever seen more than a couple of dozen fans at an away game. Small steps, but a hundred or two hundred fans at a conference rival or money game would seem like something true fans should be able to do.

There are NMSU alumni around the country who can attend a game. It would be nice if the alumni association stepped in to stimulate having some kind of event associated with away games and then to publicize those activities to alumni living within a hundred miles of so of the game. Back in the late 80's I went to such an event at an alumnus' home prior to the game with Oklahoma. That's probably the biggest turn-out at an away game I ever saw, besides UTEP/UNM.

Anyway, there's lots of steps to be taken and some of them involve the fans. I think that if I were the incoming coach, one of my biggest demands would be to multiply the recruiting budget. I'd be willing to skimp in other areas to have that.

Anonymous said...

Any truth to the Karl Dorrell rumor being interest?
Can you guys ask during tomorrow's press conference?

Anonymous said...

Coach Menzies seems to get the winning b/ball and still nobody shows up to support the team. I don't think aggies know how to be fans.

IC said...

KDBC is reporting that Charlie Johnson will have a role in the future of NMSU Football. What have you heard on this? No disrespect to Mr. Johnson, but I hope it's on an interim basis.

Anonymous said...

The time to clean house in this football program is NOW!!!NMSU needs MORE than just a new coach-it needs a total rebuild and exorcism-if that's what it takes-of the policies and people not on board to make this program succeed-and to those who want to keep it status quo,then it's time for THEM to go!!!Forty-eight years of mediocrity/laughingstock is LONG ENOUGH!!! -Az Aggie

IC said...

I will renew my football season tickets as soon as I get my 1st notice that they are on sale. I would do it immediately after the press conference if I could. Heck I might even upgrade my seats.
As for Coach Menzies and the basketball team, they cant draw fans because there are to many games. 18 at home 20 if you count the road trips to UNM and UTEP. Plus with season tickets running anywhere from $55-$800 per seat, it's no wonder they don't get more season ticket sales. Plus not to knock the home schedule, but with teams like Highlands, Western, Riverside, Sac St., and Prairie View, and even Pepperdine it's no wonder why people aren't willing to commit that much for season tickets and only go to games that stand out.

Anonymous said...

DING DONG THE WITCH IS DEAD...hope this cures what ails ya but I doubt it will

Anonymous said...

Las Cruces needs to loosen up on the geriatric pleasing retirement laws.

College Students can't have any fun, and the elderly can't attend games. So it's a no win.

The University should really revisit the decision to keep the campus dry they turned down a few years back.

A Sports Bar / Night club next to the Pan Am / Aggie Memorial would work wonders.

Anonymous said...

It is official, Mumme the idiot is gone! Good ridance!