Mizzou basketball is still in a rough patch, but a growing number of people seem to think that getting rid of the coach will solve all the problems.
It’s an absolute struggle of trying to cope with the product Missouri basketball is displaying on the court, and deal with the fans who think real college basketball is much like a video game that you can simply reset when you’re losing.
Fans have nothing better to do than criticize from an angle that ESPN has trained them to come from. If the team isn’t good, it’s the coach’s fault.
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Nowhere is this unsupported reflex-reaction way of thinking more prevalent than at Missouri right now. Fans have become accustomed to a traditional winner, and with every loss that adds up, their baseless accusations that head coach Kim Anderson is the root of the problem shows their complete and utter ignorance.
Anderson has been the coach at Missouri for two seasons now. He is a teacher of the game, and has done an excellent job at communicating with talent that he would have never considered recruiting. Those who see the failings on the court and attribute them to Anderson, I have a few questions for you guys.
- Did Anderson cause any of the violations?
- Did Anderson cause players that Haith recruited with entitled attitudes to be terrible people?
- Does Anderson tell his players to not play defense?
- Does Anderson not encourage fans to show up to games, despite the destructive donor seating program plaguing the atmosphere in Mizzou Arena?
At this point the anti-Anderson people are saying, “I get it,” but no you don’t, you’re among the most thoughtless and fair-weather group of people who exist. For your sake, the questions will continue.
5. Is the fact that Missouri has zero inside presence the fault of Anderson’s one full recruiting class?
6. Is Anderson not focusing on size in recruiting?
7. Is the consistently awful play from Wes Clark and JaKeenan Gant the fault of Anderson’s game plan?
8. Did Anderson lose non-conference games he was supposed to win this season?
The answer to every single one of these questions is “no.” These aren’t opinion-based questions, these questions represent facts that are as true as the sky being blue. Then that would lead me into my last question for the Anderson haters, “Do you even really know anything about college basketball?”
The answer is again “no.”
Until a coach has been in place for four seasons, the tide of his efforts aren’t really going to show in a big way. Already in the short time that Anderson has had the reigns of the program, there have been massive improvements in nearly every area known to basketball.
Last season, Missouri was getting blown out of games. This year, it’s a struggle to watch a team be so close to a win, but inevitably throw it away in nearly the same fashion ever single time. This has caused some of the more casual yet vocal fans to call out Anderson in some sort of attempt to blame him for the failings that he’s been patching up left and right.
All the anti-Anderson people are the same; utterly disconnected from realistic debate, the typical drunk guy at the bar who regurgitates what someone said in a CBS article three months ago. They won’t be moved in their stance because they feel like they’re doing something noble in spearheading the movement to get a better coach.
I’ve got news for you; Anderson is the guy you want here. Any other national-caliber coach would have thrown his hands in the air at this point and said, “You deal with it.” But not Kim, whose loyalty and desire to see Missouri improve is about the only thing that’s keeping the players motivated to perform as well as they have this season, which, in case you haven’t noticed, it much better than last season.
So go right ahead and Google some statistics, get your drinking buddy to reaffirm your accusations, and see if you can’t drum up some agreement from people who might as well be stoned and uninvolved with sports in general. If you’re crying and screaming for a new coach, then I’d like to know who you think would just be leading the current team of below-average players to utter prominence right now.
You can’t answer that with a realistic response, because there isn’t one. There’s no one who just makes this group of players play at the level of top teams in the SEC. No one.
So while the spoiled crowd of people who want Anderson out feels like their case grows stronger with every loss, it’s plain as day that their evaluation is born of frustration. We are all frustrated, but getting rid of Anderson won’t fix the team. The only thing that will help that anyone can affect right now is more people showing up at Mizzou Arena and supporting one of the more difficult situations in college basketball right now. So what are you doing?