They’re whispers but still, someone is talking out of their rear-end. Somehow, despite being successful, there has been talk of Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Anthony Grant being on the hot seat. For what it’s worth, the noise surrounding this is so small only die-hard Bama fans probably hear it. However, it is noise that will eventually gain traction unless the Crimson Tide do some serious damage the rest of the way.
Now let’s get something straight. The Alabama hoops program is not the Alabama football program. Two different programs, which should have two very different set of expectations, that happen to play under the same Bama moniker. Now while the Bama football program is going through some sort of dynasty type of run, the hoops program has always been steady but not great. Not a horrible place where hoops is played but not the perennial power their football cohorts are.
That is who they have been until Grant took over the program three years ago. Grant took over a situation where the previous coach resigned mid-season, making it tough the following year to make his players trust in him as they were just abandoned. In a sense, his first year with the program was going to be a wash, a wash that saw a team under his reign still go 17-15.
In his first three and a half seasons, Grant is 50 games over .500, and has led the Crimson Tide to one Tourney appearance and is on the cusp of another. His teams might not play the prettiest offensively or he might not be grabbing the highest rated high school prospects each season, but what are your expectations for this hoops program.
Not that there is anything wrong with expectations but they have to be realistic. Alabama has been an above-average program for some time and is trying to make a goal of being a good-to-great one. However, that takes time, things like that don’t happen overnight.
Magical coaches don’t grow on trees. Firing, or even talking about firing, a good coach unless you have a great one lined-up is a horrible move. Replacing good with good is obviously a lateral move and will only stall your programs development time. Although, chances are, Alabama isn’t going to find another coach as good as Grant.
Nothing wrong for the fanbase, alum, or whomever to want the basketball program to be as prestigious as their football program. They just need to remember that those programs are two separate beasts and the more successful one has been doing it much longer than the other.
Nobody wants to be patient anymore and we all want a winner today. It is odd though, Grant is a winner right now, and some still want him gone. I guess being good is no longer good enough.
Joe covers the Catholic Seven for Rant Sports. For the love of Sam Cassell, follow Joe on the Twitter Machine @JosephNardone