I know Syracuse fans, it’s been a rough ride.
But finally, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel.
On Sunday, the Orange parted ways with coach Greg Robinson. In his three-plus seasons, Robinson put up an impressively abysmal 9-36 record, which included a 3-25 mark in Big East play.
While most of the college football mob worries about the BCS and what happens if Texas Tech and Alabama don’t run the table, we here at Rumors and Rants don’t neglect the other side of college football – the ass end.
See, all five of us graduated from a school which is as likely to win a Big Ten title as the state of Arkansas is of funding honeymoon packages in Puerto Vallarta for newly wedded gay couples.
Now, Phillips and McD both attended football schools (USC and Oregon, respectively) before arriving at the nadir of scholastic pigskin. But they are in it just as deep as the rest of us.
This weekend, The Indianapolis Star wrote its annual, “How will the Hoosiers turn it around” article. In it, we learned since 2000 only three of the 66 BCS conference schools have won fewer games than Indiana. They being the powerhouses Vanderbilt (30), Baylor (29) and Duke (14) – all more likely to produce Rhodes Scholars and the socialite mint julep trophy wives of tomorrow than blue-chip NFL prospects.
A year ago, the Hoosiers advanced to a bowl game for the first time since Pearl Jam released “Ten” (1993). Optimism was high. But alas, they’ve regressed and are guaranteed their 13th losing season in the last 14 years.
So, we know your pain Syracuse.
We know the Greg Robinson Experiment failed miserably. You’re probably thinking it’s the worst coaching job in the history of Division I.
Syracuse is 2-8 this season and is looking to avoid its third 10-loss season under Robinson. Prior to his hiring in 2005, the school, which began playing football in Grover Cleveland’s first term (1889), had never reached double-digit losses in a season.
But thanks to the luxury of being an Indiana University football fan observer, I can tell you all Greg Robinson did was pull what we like to call a “DiNardo.”
Gerry DiNardo produced an 8-27 record in three seasons in Bloomington, including a 3-21 record in Big Ten play.
Obviously an expert on the conference, DiNardo – who was moonlighting as a waiter and bathroom clerk attendant at his wife’s Italian restaurant DeAngelo’s – landed a gig as The Big Ten Network’s studio analyst.
On the Big Ten Network’s web site, DiNardo’s bio reads:
Once a college football analyst with ESPN and ESPN Radio’s College GameDay alongside Dave Revsine, DiNardo’s coaching career includes head coaching stints at Vanderbilt and Louisiana State University. An All-American at Notre Dame, he was a member of the school’s 1973 national championship team.
Now, my vision is far from 20/20. But I think I missed the part where the Big Ten Network mentions DiNardo actually spent three seasons in the conference he speaks so knowledgeably about on television.
Nowhere does it read, “At Indiana, DiNardo did his best to help the rest of the Big Ten teams get their shine on as his Hoosiers allowed opposing conference schools to score an average of 36 points a game over the course of three seasons.” Also omitted is, “run out of town for being a glaring douche.”
Coaches get fired every year. It’s part of the beast. Tommy Bowden, Ty Willingham and Phil Fulmer have already gotten the axe.
But it’s the epically bad that we love. Maybe it’s because we can’t understand why they were chosen in the first place or how they managed to stay as long as they did. You know what they say about train wrecks. We’ve been conditioned – rather – DiNardo-ed.
So naturally, Sunday was something like a mini-holiday for us. Joining Robinson in the unemployment line this weekend was fellow loser, Utah State coach Brent Guy. Since 2005, the Aggies are 7-32. Only three schools have worse winning percentages than Utah State during that span (Duke, Temple and FIU). Located at sixth on the list is Syracuse.
Whose next? Charlie Weis? Had Navy completed its miraculous comeback attempt, who knows? (though I’ll leave all Notre Dame content to TheRiot.)
Robinson isn’t the first to bite the dust and he certainly won’t be the last. He just might be one of the most deserving in a long time, at least since that DiNardo character. It’s a shame the Big East doesn’t have its own television network yet.
I wonder if DiNardo’s wife needs any help in the kitchen.