Oregon State coach Craig Robinson was on late-night television again Tuesday, appearing on BET on The Mo'Nique Show alongside Bow Wow and Ruben Studdard. That's one of the perks of being the brother-in-law to President Obama while having a memoir to promote.
The BET appearance had sophomore guard Jared Cunningham amused and snapping a photo of his television screen. It also provided this bit of unintentional comedy: On The Mo'Nique Show's Facebook page, it was accidentally promoted that actor Craig Robinson of Hot Tub Time Machine, Pineapple Express, Knocked Up, and Zack and Miri fame would be appearing on the show.
Back to basketball, Robinson is approaching what is shaping up to be a very important year. After three seasons, he hasn't yet led the Beavers to a winning record. His best finish was winning the CBI in his first year to finish .500, and this season was a disappointment for the Beavers.
They managed to knock off eventual Pac-10 champion Arizona in the opening weekend, with Cunningham coming through with one of college basketball's best dunks of the season. Still, the team slumped to a ninth-place finish in the league and finished with an 11-20 record.
Cunningham had a breakout season, yet a youthful roster struggled to jell because as he told the Arizona Republic, "Last year, some of it was just chemistry. We had a lot of different rotations, and we just weren't used to each other. Now we're a close group."
This coming season, the team will consist of all players that Robinson has recruited himself, including Ahmad Starks, Roberto Nelson and Devon Collier -- rotation members who earned significant minutes in their first year of action.
According to Inc. Magazine, Robinson is optimistic.
I'm pretty honest in evaluating myself. As long as I can point to where the issues are and they are correctible, I don't get too down on the team or myself. When you're rebuilding a program, it’s not something that's going to happen in one or two years.
When I reevaluate at the end of the year, I ask if we’re headed in the right direction. If I'm comfortable with that and we keep doing the fundamental things correctly, we'll get there.