The Ben Johnson Hire vs. Comparable Hires

SelectionSunday

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The problem with using history to set expectations is things change quickly particularly in the portal era. The U is running out of reasons not to have a competitive basketball program that makes the tournament every year with the new found advantages that we have that we didn’t before between in-state recruiting and the new facilities. It took Pitino 4 years to not just make the tournament but finish 4th in the conference, if a mediocre coach that’s a poor recruiter can accomplish that here pre portal, I have no reason to believe that shouldn’t be the standard in the long term.

I’m behind Ben 100% and I think he’s perfect for the job but expectations should be something like 4 years to make the tournament (3 in my mind), six years to contend for the conference and 8 to win the conference or get to a Sweet 16. For as much as people make this conference out to be a tough climb to the top, Illinois flipped their roster and became an annual contender pretty quickly. It’s not like Underwood set the world on fire in recruiting either, he surrounded Ayo and Cockburn (a pair of top 40-50 recruits) with solid pieces and now they’re a headache every year.

it was hard to win at Baylor until it wasn’t (they went 20 years without a tournament appearance before Drew’s 5th season), hard to win at Texas Tech until it wasn’t, Wisconsin and so on. If Football is a consistent bowl program and division contender, our expectations for Basketball should be even higher
Well said.

My general expectation for any Gopher basketball coach has always been, Year 3 you should be legitimately competing for a NCAA bid (maybe make NCAA, NIT for sure), and Year 4 should be in the NCAA. Since Monson hire, Tubby was the only guy to do that; made NCAA in Year 2.
 

bc2211

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Look, Ben could have a below average record after 6 years here and it wouldn't necessarily mean he was a bad hire. It's difficult to win at Minnesota as you all know. History suggests Ben will be fortunate to go .500 here and he could still be considered a good hire. I think 40 years in the desert is a good data point not to be ignored. Okay, jump down my throat now.
I understand what you are saying, but as Ricky Bobby once said - if you’re not first, you’re last.
 

Gopherfan84

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The problem with using history to set expectations is things change quickly particularly in the portal era. The U is running out of reasons not to have a competitive basketball program that makes the tournament every year with the new found advantages that we have that we didn’t before between in-state recruiting and the new facilities. It took Pitino 4 years to not just make the tournament but finish 4th in the conference, if a mediocre coach that’s a poor recruiter can accomplish that here pre portal, I have no reason to believe that shouldn’t be the standard in the long term.

I’m behind Ben 100% and I think he’s perfect for the job but expectations should be something like 4 years to make the tournament (3 in my mind), six years to contend for the conference and 8 to win the conference or get to a Sweet 16. For as much as people make this conference out to be a tough climb to the top, Illinois flipped their roster and became an annual contender pretty quickly. It’s not like Underwood set the world on fire in recruiting either, he surrounded Ayo and Cockburn (a pair of top 40-50 recruits) with solid pieces and now they’re a headache every year.

it was hard to win at Baylor until it wasn’t (they went 20 years without a tournament appearance before Drew’s 5th season), hard to win at Texas Tech until it wasn’t, Wisconsin and so on. If Football is a consistent bowl program and division contender, our expectations for Basketball should be even higher
Funny thing with Baylor is he started winning more when he stopped getting McDonalds guys. He learned that he needed to build it right and then you can add one or two in (Kendall Brown for ex). There is a path for non blue bloods. Sure it involves the portal, but it really involves early identification and relationship building on the recruiting trail. Then it requires being efficient and old with those pierces (that’s where the portal helps). The job has some different challenges than ones you’ve brought up (being in a pro sports town with limited donors), but with the right coach you can win.
 

ecoperson

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Sounds reasonable. If we don't see tourney run by year 4, eek.

Year 3 we at the very least should be bubble, but my expectation is tourney team by year 3
I literally threw this year out the window in terms of wins and losses after analyzing the make up of this team early this fall. Based on what I have seen from this staff, here is what I feel that this team can accomplish over the next couple of years assuming everyone stays healthy:

2022-23: Key Returning Players- Battle, Ihnen, Fox, Thompson, Thiam
Not knowing the schedule and transfer portal success, I am being conservative in looking for a small improvement in wins with a minimum overall .500 win percentage and 2-4 more conference wins than this season. The returning players are able to bring the transfers and rookies into the fold over the summer so that there is less of a learning curve in the fall. The team should be competitive in losses, pull off an upset or two, and begin building a core of solid young players as starters or off the bench.

2023-24: Key Returning Players- Battle, Ihnen, Fox, Thompson, Thiam, Carrington, Payne, Ola-Joseph, Henley,
This is the year that this team can make a jump in the wins column after having the core players in the system for a couple of years. Assuming some key recruits, this team should defend the home court in conference like some of Haskins' teams. Assuming that they can win a share of conference games on the road, this should lead to a .500 record in conference and, at minimum, expectations of being in the bubble conversation.

I honestly am looking to see a general track of improvement each year. Wins may go up and down due to things outside of their control like strength of schedule or injuries but one should be seeing the foundation has been laid and that the team is building something of substance.
 



Some guy

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Look, Ben could have a below average record after 6 years here and it wouldn't necessarily mean he was a bad hire. It's difficult to win at Minnesota as you all know. History suggests Ben will be fortunate to go .500 here and he could still be considered a good hire. I think 40 years in the desert is a good data point not to be ignored. Okay, jump down my throat now.
If you hire a guy who can’t produce a top 5 in the conference in his first 6 years, it is a bad hire. Period.

Unless winning isn’t your primary evaluation of success.
 




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