Sanctions, timing, location, resources impact performance

When a program consistently underachieves over time, you might want to look deeper than just whether the coaches are doing their job, writes Doug Gottlieb.

Originally Published: May 10, 2007
By Doug Gottlieb | Special to ESPN.com
Anytime a program underachieves, the man who collects the biggest check generally is the one who takes the blame, and subsequently the fall.

Fair or unfair, coaches take heat for most everything negative that happens to a program. The truth of the matter is that there are many mitigating factors, including injuries and suspensions, conference affiliations, facilities, unrealistic academic expectations, and yes, having the right coach in the right part of the country at the right time, that impact bottom-line performance.

It should also be prominently mentioned that NCAA sanctions, typically triggered by a previous staff's actions, have a great deal to do with overall basketball performance and the general momentum of athletics at a university.