Friday, February 17, 2006

Dennis Franchione is an over-rated pussbag.

Here's one of my favorite targets of sport hate:

Dennis Franchione, the over-rated disloyal jerk of a football coach.

He of course is the amazing college head football coach that comes in and turns winners into teams that were previously losers. At least, that's his rep. I contend that his success has been over-hyped and his disloyalty to teams over prestige, visibility, and the almighty dollar exceed the norm for the cutthroat industry that is sports leadership.

Let's look at the over-rated part first. All anybody ever talks about is how he builds programs up or brings them back. He's been successful everywhere! Okay, well let's see:

Texas St. - 2 years, 13-9. Not bad I suppose
New Mexico - 6 years, 33-36. Uhhhhh.... Okay. Great? Analysis later.
TCU - 3 years, 25-10. Yeah, that's pretty darn good.
Alabama - 2 years, 17-8. Okay
A&M - 3 years, 16-19. Not so great.
Career - 16 years, 104-82, .559%

Okay so let's look at this. Texas St. A 6-5 season then a 7-4 season... improvement, yes. And over a ten year period 1985-1994, these were the only winning seasons for this team. But it's AA. Regardless, he has some moderate success then he bolts to...

New Mexico. His first four years (92-95) produced 1 winning season (6-5 in 1993). This team sucked before he got them true, but he improved them none at all his first season, 6-5 his second season then regressed almost back to where the team was when he came in by 1995 (4-7) Then he brought in this guy, Gary Patterson. Maybe you've heard of him. 2 seasons together they go 6-5 & 9-4. But, the team (although they won the WAC-Mountain Division Title in 1997, they lost the bowl game that year (Fran's only bowl appearance with NM) and they weren't ranked. But regardless, it's a little bit of success so of course that means it's time to flee to...

TCU. 3 years. 3 Winning Seasons. Builds into a damn fine program that is still going strong with that Gary Patterson guy in charge. Oh yeah, Patterson was there for Fran's three years too. A 2-1 bowl record and 1 top 25 final ranking in 3 years. That's pretty good. I'll admit that. But would it have been the same without Patterson? And it's what he does just before a bowl game that really draws ire. Fran, after a 10-1 season sees green in the Crimson Tide and bolts to...

Alabama. He then "rebuilds" the Tide over two seasons (3-8 the year before Fran got there) to go 7-5 and 10-3. Of course, it's not like Alabama was a perennial loser. They had an off year in 2000. In 99 they went 10-3. And Mike Shula has managed to build the Tide back in three seasons as well. But consider this, Shula did it with NCAA Sanctions to deal with. Fran didn't have those and in fact had some of the after effects of the violations that brought those sanctions down on the school to begin with. But regardless, Fran saw a school that would limit his ability to win so enter
Texas A&M. A team with at least as much heritage as Bama. He's had 3 years and really hasn't shown any major success yet. Can A&M not recruit as well as other big state schools? What's the problem? All the pundits point fingers everywhere but Fran.

This guy was a mediocre coach until he found a Defensive Co that could actually make him look good. He then rode that wave to a big school that has more recruiting opportunities, and then left before restrictions could make him look bad. He has a knack for taking a small amount of success and then turning that into a more high profile position. As soon as he has a good year, expect him to leave.

And the way he does it is just atrocious. He abandoned the Frogs before a bowl game. And the bowl game was in the city where his new team was. He was at the game! But he couldn't wait until after the game to make his intentions known. Nope, had to throw chaos into the team before the big game.

And then of course there's the Alabama departure. After rallying his team and motivating them to stay together (as opposed to transferring out when the sanctions hit) he gives all the players these great speeches about getting behind him and being strong for the university and then bolts as soon as A&M comes calling. And he doesn't even tell the team in person. He just left and told an assistant to tell everybody. I guess all that togetherness talk was really less about helping the school and more about helping him pad his resume so he can get the heck out of there.

He's a fraud. Don't be surprised if he CAN'T turn the Aggies around. He really hasn't shown that he's capable of doing it himself. Buyer Beware with this guy.

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