Thursday, January 06, 2011

If you're Tony Samuel, what do you do now?

Get inside Tony Samuel's mind just for a minute.

Your football team recently set school records for its 9-3 finish. You've finally gotten the attention of a football-loving community after four seasons of frustration. Top it off with the biggest award of your career — the Eddie Robinson Award as the nation's top coach in the FCS.

And now you've got until Jan. 31 to decide whether to sign a new contract with Southeast or head back into the big leagues.

If you're Samuel, the choice could be one of the biggest in your life.

Samuel knows that as a coach, a career isn't built on the empty promises for tomorrow, but instead on what you've done lately. And if Samuel wants to land back in college's major level — he was, after all, once a head coach at New Mexico State and an assistant at Purdue — now's the time. His resume looks sharp on the heels of a 9-3 season, especially at a program that's seen more failures than successes since it moved up from Division II in 1991.

Samuel's other option: Sign a new deal with Southeast by Jan. 31, risk a return to mediocrity next season when Southeast loses much of its talent to graduation, then watch his mid-major college value all but disappear.

Publicly, Samuel has had no offers to take or accept. But head coaching vacancies abound, and at major colleges coast to coast, newly hired head coaches are advertising several very appealing assistant jobs right now.

For a coach with no ties to Southeast Missouri and whose heart has always been at the major-college level, Samuel's decision to not come back for Year No. 6 would surprise no one.

Southeast, welcome back to the coaching carousel.


Pat said...

You're wrong, as usual when it comes to things Southeast. Samuel will be back. Bookmark this.

JAMIE HALL said...

Thanks for the vote of confidence, Pat. Actually I've heard different opinions from a few sources over the past few days, so this one could go either way. I don't see Tony Samuel signing another 4-year or 5-year deal to stay at SEMO. Just a hunch, but we'll see.

Pat said...

If you have sources telling you otherwise, my advice to you is -- get new sources.