Coaching search continues as Painter sticks with Purdue

The Maneater published this article on March 30, 2011

Matt Painter will not be the next head coach of the Missouri men’s basketball team. After meeting with Missouri officials in Orlando on Tuesday, the 40-year-old three-time Big Ten Coach of the Year award winner opted to sign an 8-year extension with Purdue.

“At the end of the day, my heart is at Purdue, and this is a place where I want to win a national championship,” Painter said in a statement Wednesday.

Painter’s new contract extension will keep him with his alma mater through the 2018-2019 season.

Other terms of the contract were not disclosed.

“We are thrilled to announce that Matt will continue his leadership of our men’s basketball program at his alma mater,” Purdue athletics director Morgan Burke said in a press release on the school’s athletic website. “He has been at the helm of the winningest four-year period in the storied history of Boilermaker basketball, and we pledge to work with him to win championships.”

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Purdue works to keep Painter as Missouri makes its case

The Maneater published this article on March 29, 2011

Mike Alden and the search committee made its case to Painter in Orlando Tuesday afternoon. Alden has asked Painter to make a decision by noon on Wednesday.

After days of speculation that Missouri was making its final push to bring in Matt Painter to replace Mike Anderson as its men’s basketball coach, Purdue finally made its move to retain their coach Tuesday.

“Last night the board of trustees, President (France) Córdova, and (Athletic Director) Morgan Burke clearly demonstrated Purdue University’s commitment to him and to our men’s basketball program,” Purdue assistant athletic director Tom Schott said in a teleconference Tuesday morning. “We are proactive and while we will not go into details at this time, we have encouraged Matt Painter to stay through our words and actions. We want Matt to remain a Boilermaker.”

Schott’s statement comes a day after Athletic Director Mike Alden and members of his staff traveled to Orlando to meet with Painter and negotiate a potential move to Columbia.

Schott declined to comment when asked why Purdue has waited to make its pitch to Painter.

It is considered a common courtesy among universities to seek permission before negotiating with another team’s coach. It is still unclear if Missouri sought permission to speak with Painter, but Schott said he has no reason to believe MU is handling the situation less than professionally.

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Anderson out: Missouri coach leaves for Arkansas

The Maneater published this article on March 23, 2011

Maneater File photo

Check out my story on Bleacher Report on why it’s absurd to pay Mike Anderson over $2 million.

I also wrote a recap of Anderson’s time at Mizzou and the recent coaching saga for Bleacher Report.

Mike Anderson was officially named the men’s basketball coach at the University of Arkansas Wednesday evening, ending weeks of speculation. Anderson, who spent the first 17 years of his career as an assistant under Nolan Richardson at Arkansas, formally requested permission to speak with Arkansas athletic department officials Wednesday morning.

“At 12:30 today, the chancellor’s office and myself, we visited with Coach Anderson on a conference call and at that time Coach Anderson asked us directly for permission to talk to another institution,” Missouri athletic director Mike Alden said. “We granted that permission at about 1 o’clock this afternoon…I met with Coach Anderson at 6:45 today in his office and he informed me at that time that he would be resigning his position at the University of Missouri as our head men’s basketball coach.”

Arkansas is bringing in Anderson in the hopes that he can re-invigorate a program that has recently fallen on hard times.

“Under Mike’s leadership, I am confident the Razorbacks will be successful in the future on and off the court,” Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long said. “The decision to hire Mike Anderson as head coach is based on my firm belief that he is the right person to lead the Razorback program today and in the years to come.”

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Gabbert impresses NFL scouts, coaches at pro day

The Maneater published this article on February 27, 2011

You can hear my interviews from pro day which include: Gary Pinkel, Blaine Gabbert, Terry McShay, Chuck Gabbert, Aldon Smith, and Todd McShay here.

Blaine Gabbert threw for NFL Scouts for the first time since the Insight Bowl on Thursday. (Photo: Ben Walton)

An estimated 500 people were on hand for Missouri’s pro day on Thursday afternoon. Among that large crowd were representatives from each of the 32 NFL teams, including Hall-of-Fame quarterback John Elway and New York Jets coach Rex Ryan.

The main attraction for a few of those NFL officials and a large portion of that record-sized crowd was quarterback Blaine Gabbert. The former Missouri star is projected as the number one overall pick by many analysts, including ESPN draft expert Todd McShay, who said, “barring catastrophe,” Gabbert was the top quarterback in the draft.

Gabbert, who chose to forgo his senior season to enter the NFL Draft, has spent the last 10-weeks in Arizona preparing for his chance to impress scouts at MU’s pro-day. Scouts focused primarily on Gabbert’s transition from the shotgun-heavy spread offense to the under-center style of a pro-offense. As a result, this made up the bulk of Gabbert’s work with quarterback coach Terry Shea.

“I’ve tried to build him from the ground up,” Shea said. “He’s natural with it. His feet work very efficiently…He has large hands, so taking a center snap is not going to be a problem.”

Shea, whose coaching resume includes Sam Bradford and Matthew Stafford — two No. 1 overall picks, said that Gabbert separates from center as well as anyone he has ever seen.

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Breaking down March Madness, region by region

The Maneater published this article on February 27, 2011

Check out The Maneater’s extensive tourney coverage including a preview of Missouri vs. Cincinnati and a bracket challenge for cash prizes. Zach, Kahler, and Brian make their picks for the tourney and talk about the match-ups they’re most interested in during this week’s installment of The Midweek Roundtable on HSB Radio.

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