Thursday, November 22, 2012
3-point shot: Woods must mind his temper
By Andy Katz
1. Sean Woods took Mississippi Valley State to the NCAA tournament. He chased a few different jobs before landing Morehead State when Donnie Tyndall left for Southern Miss. Woods had no problems working from the ground up to climb higher in coaching. And that's exactly why he can't afford to take a step back. Woods' emotional challenge to his own player, Devon Atkinson, during Wednesday night's loss at his alma mater, Kentucky, could go viral. He pushed Atkinson back toward the huddle then continued to get in Atkinson's grill, even after an assistant appeared to send Atkinson to the bench. Woods defended his actions in a text message late Wednesday night, saying, "Don't want to get into that. Just coaching my guys.'' He is trying to make a statement by getting his players to play harder and smarter. But Woods, like countless others, has to realize he's on a stage where the world can see every move. Woods is still representing a university. He's coaching a college student. And there are standards of decorum that must be adhered to. Woods doesn't need to reduce his intensity or his passion. He just needs to dial it down a notch when he is frustrated in a public forum.
2. Kansas State's current coaching staff has nothing but positive things to say about the previous staff, notably what Frank Martin did to take the Wildcats to the level of a consistent NCAA tournament contender. But the coaches did notice a different demeanor when they took over in the spring. Assistant coach Chris Lowery said players would drop their chins down when talking instead of looking at you in the eye. There was a sense of fear. But that apparently is gone. New head coach Bruce Weber is trying to instill a different approach. So far the players are buying. Rodney McGruder said, "Coach Weber is intense, but he just has a different way of delivering the message.'' Ultimately, the Wildcats will be judged on whether or not they can continue to be a Big 12 contender as they were under Martin. But there is a looser atmosphere around this crew.
3. The College of Charleston is in the final stages of agreeing to move to the Colonial Athletic Assocation from the Southern Conference, according to a CAA official. Charleston is being very deliberate in its process and will apparently deviate for nothing. The CAA is hoping Charleston can get to the league for the 2013-14 season, especially with the departures of Old Dominion and Georgia State next season.