Jeff Capel fired — should he be a candidate at Georgia Tech?

Jeff Capel coached Oklahoma to the Elite Eight in 2009 but the Sooners have slid in the last two seasons.

Jeff Capel coached Oklahoma to Elite Eight but Sooners slid in the last two seasons.

In full disclosure, I’m throwing this name out there for the Georgia Tech job only because of his sudden availability and not because of any inside information: Jeff Capel.

Oklahoma has confirmed multiple reports that it has fired Capel as its basketball coach. It’s a stunning development for a coach who once was considered one of the sport’s rising stars  and only two years ago had his team within one victory of the Final Four.

Here’s the breakdown on Capel:

Positives

– He knows the ACC as a North Carolina native and a standout guard at Duke.

– He has a strong coaching background at Old Dominion (as assistant); VCU (four straight winning seasons including 23-8 with an NCAA berth in 2004); and Oklahoma (two NCAA berths in his first three years, including making it to the Elite Eight in 2009).

– He was believed to be the top candidate at Georgia two years ago but apparently didn’t reciprocate the interest to former athletic director Damon Evans. Georgia wound up hiring Mark Fox.

Negatives

– Capel received a contract extension two years ago that runs through 2014 and paid him a salary in the $1.05 million to $1.5 million, depending on media reports. The Oklahoman is reporting he will receive a $2 million to $3 million buyout. Bottom line: He may be too expensive for Georgia Tech’s budget.

– Since reaching the Elite Eight (with Blake Griffin), the Sooners have gone 27-36 overall and 9-23 in the Big 12 in the last two seasons (without Griffin). So suddenly it has come into question just how good of a coach and recruiter he really is.

– Oklahoma currently is under NCAA investigation regarding improper payments to former player Tiny Gallon. The $3,000 reportedly came from an agent, not anybody associated with the university or a booster.

Capel is a much bigger name than I expect Georgia Tech to hire, but I figured he was worth debating. Any thoughts?

By Jeff Schultz

EARLIER

NCAA tournament: SEC (Georgia) has passed ACC (Tech)

Can Calipari (still free) and Kentucky make up for 2010 fizzle?

Paul Hewitt was undone at Georgia Tech by more than just losing

Follow me on Twitter @JeffSchultzAJC; friend me at Facebook.com/JeffSchultzAJC

123 comments Add your comment

gtdawg

March 14th, 2011
2:33 pm

bobby cremins

Chuck Sheen

March 14th, 2011
2:33 pm

MagnaCarterGT

March 14th, 2011
2:34 pm

I’m still liking Richmond’s Chris Mooney. Whether he’d have any interest in Tech is another story.

DawginLex

March 14th, 2011
2:36 pm

They can do better than Capel

David

March 14th, 2011
2:39 pm

Do people realize how bad Cremins was in his last years at Tech? Anthony Grant or Chris Mooney

Hollywould

March 14th, 2011
2:39 pm

On an unrelated note I just heard Ronnie Hammond (lead singer for the Atlanta Rythym Section)
died earlier today. What a voice he had.

Jeff Schultz

March 14th, 2011
2:41 pm

Funny how people forget how Bobby Cremins failed to make the NCAA tournament in his last four years at Tech.

D A DoubleU G

March 14th, 2011
2:42 pm

No matter who Tech hires, the Techies will come out screaming “Great hire!!!!”, simply based on desperation.

It’s amusing to watch them stand up and scream “yeah, he would be great”, when there is little or no resume attached.

And finally, it is absolutely amusement to my eyes and ears knowing that no matter who they hire, they would point fingers and laugh if UGA had hired the same person.

This is proving to be one of the most fun things I have ever witnessed on these childish blogs!!!

GO DAWGS!!!!!
73-66
73-72

Jeff Schultz

March 14th, 2011
2:43 pm

MagnaCarterGT — I like the fact that Chris Mooney played at Princeton and coached a year at Air Force and therefore can maybe deal with some of the academic issues at Tech. Two straight years in the tournament is nice too.

STRETCH

March 14th, 2011
2:44 pm

JS,

Dont you think all the one and dones hurt GT, much like it hurts the NCAA all over?

D A DoubleU G

March 14th, 2011
2:45 pm

Tech basketball is obviously going through “Volunteer Regret Syndrome” (VRS) right before our very eyes.

They got frustrated and ran off a proven successful coach, and then in hindsight have realized he should have been the man the whole time.

This disease is named after former Tennessee Football Coach Philip Fulmer……. (insert “Fulmer Cup” joke here ___________________________________________)

D A DoubleU G

March 14th, 2011
2:47 pm

Hey Jeff,

Any word on the tipoff time for Georgia Tech’s first NIT game???

oh, wait……………..

BillS

March 14th, 2011
2:48 pm

NO NO NO. Okla just fired him, so why does he suddenly seem perfect for GT???

MagnaCarterGT

March 14th, 2011
2:55 pm

Jeff – definitely agree that Mooney would be a good fit at Tech given it’s academic environs. 18-12 at Air Force is no easy feat, and though his first three years at Richmond were a bit rocky he’s really turned things around since then.

gdawginkalamazoo

March 14th, 2011
3:00 pm

I agree with Bill, what’sup with “he just got fired, so let’s hire him????”

Somewhere some school is saying “Hewitt just got fired, let’s hire him.”

Dave Braine

March 14th, 2011
3:01 pm

Another good coach that’s available is Paul Hewitt. I bet he’s already talked with several major schools.

ANTOINEFORD

March 14th, 2011
3:02 pm

Cremins was terrible. Probably the eighth best coach in what was then a 9-team conference. The last time he made the NCAA’s, Marbury was 19. He’s 43 now.

ANTOINEFORD

March 14th, 2011
3:04 pm

Only a true loser would hire a fired coach.

gdawginkalamazoo

March 14th, 2011
3:10 pm

IMO Tech can do alot better than a just fired coach. They can get somebody established or a very good up and coming coach. Tech has been pretty damn good in basketball and should be able to get a talented coach in there.

GIVE ME A BREAK

March 14th, 2011
3:19 pm

He’s just another unemployed ” RISING STAR.” No thanks.

TomB

March 14th, 2011
3:22 pm

Antoine Ford,; You are delusional. How many times does an eighth best coach win 3 ACC championships and reach 5 sweet sixteens?

And, Jeff, yes everyone remembers Bobby Cremins last four seasons, but even then his conference winning percentage was better than Hewitts when you compare their final five seasons, and Cremins did make the NIT twice during that time.

I’ll take the ACC championships and sweet sixteen appearances any day. What killed Cremins was the South Carolina fiasco and its impact on recruiting during that time.

Supersize that order, mutt

March 14th, 2011
3:24 pm

Jeff, Ga.Tech is way above somebody like Jeff Capel.

Tech needs to bring in someone like Calipari from Kentucky.

Art Vandelay

March 14th, 2011
3:25 pm

With any luck, Larry Drew will be available soon.

GIVE ME A BREAK

March 14th, 2011
3:27 pm

Knock Cremins all you want but while Hewitt and GT are done. Bobby is still playing.

Luke

March 14th, 2011
3:30 pm

Hey D A,

Maybe if you paid attention to college basketball, you would have seen that Hewitt’s team shot 40 percent from the floor and averaged 68 points per game this year. 13-18 record.

Last year, with two draft picks in Derrick Favors and Gani Lawal, we shot 45 percent and averaged 73 points per game. 23-13 record.

The year before that, we shot 43 percent and averaged 71 points per game. 12-19 record.

07-08. Shot 47 percent and averaged 77 points per game. 15-17 record. This was Anthony Morrow’s senior season.

06-07. Shot 49 percent and averaged 79 points per game. 20-12 record. The season that Thaddeus Young and Javaris Crittenton made their debuts.

As you can, over the past 5 years (including this one) Paul Hewitt dug his own grave. He recruited well, but did nothing with it, and its shown with the decrease in shooting % and ppg show that he doesn’t have the talent anymore to cover up the fact that he does not have some sort offensive scheme. Yes, we did drive him off, but the lack of support wasn’t for the team, it was for a coach that could not cut in the ACC (or never could to be honest).

As for georgie, we will see how well they do after they get squandered by Washington (sorry Shultzie, I don’t buy you, Bradley, or Chuck and Chernoff’s love for UGA beat UDubb, especially with their fantastic guard play).

With Leslie and Thompkins all but gone, it could be a rude awakening for all the georgie fans. I like Mark Fox, and I think he was a “GREAT HIRE” (as D U would put it), and he will do great things for the program. Heck, if Tech hires the right coach, we may even find ourselves playing with sold out tickets for the next few years in Atlanta/Athens. But if georgie falls apart like they have all season long, it could get ugly.

That being said, I’m not a fan of Cappel, especially after he just got fired. He may be a young coach with fire, but I’d rather have the guy from Butler, or have the interesting Richmond offense come to town. Mooney, I think, could do wonders for our program. But most importantly, I want a coach that will be willing to talk to the students and act like he wants to coach, day in and day out.

Anthony Grant will not be taking a paycut to coach Teck

March 14th, 2011
3:31 pm

To the guy who suggested Anthony Grant:

ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha
ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

D A DoubleU G

March 14th, 2011
3:32 pm

Good luck in the NIT Luke………..

oh…..

Luke

March 14th, 2011
3:34 pm

supersize-

Don’t see us hiring Calipari. Just too much baggage there. Maybe Turgeron from TAMU or Grant from Bama, as rumors have it. But Calipari would just try to ooze money.

Luke

March 14th, 2011
3:37 pm

D A,

You jest, but I’m glad we’re not in the NIT. It was just something else to add to Hewitt’s resume of mediocrity and something else he could throw at DRad to not get fired.

That being said, I really hope Gerald can hold on to the ball on Friday. Because its gonna be a long night if georgie tries to play uptempo.

Tech will hire another no-name

March 14th, 2011
3:38 pm

Calipari? That’s a joke, right? Please tell me you don’t think that Calipari would even consider that. Seriously.

Supersize that order, mutt

March 14th, 2011
3:48 pm

All i’m telling you is what my sources inside the Athletic Dept have told me. Don’t shoot the messenger. But yes, there is mutual interest b/t Tech and Cal.

Genius Jacket

March 14th, 2011
3:51 pm

The “academic issues” at Tech are interesting , aren’t they? We have the fewest number of basketball players graduating in the ACC.

Most of our basketball players take courses at Clark Atlanta anyway.

Worm

March 14th, 2011
3:52 pm

Capel would be a better fit at Ga. St.

Calipari will never come

March 14th, 2011
3:52 pm

No there isn’t. You are flat out making that up. Or else the person you heard it from is making it up and you are stupid enough to believe it. No one leaves a top 5 national job unless they retire or are fired. UCLA, Indiana, Kentucky, Duke, and UNC do not lose coaches to lesser programs. Never happened, never will. Tech couldn’t even come close to matching Calipari’s salary at UK.

Gordon

March 14th, 2011
3:52 pm

We can do better. Last name of the new coach will start with an M.

Mooney, Marshall, or Mack.

Calipari will never come

March 14th, 2011
3:53 pm

The school that admitted Starbury and Kenny Anderson should never talk about academics when it comes to basketball players.

Supersize that order, mutt

March 14th, 2011
3:57 pm

Calipari will never come, when was the last time Kentucky was relevant? This isn’t your dad’s Kentucky anymore.

Tech and UK are much closer to each other than you think, and Tech has a much more fertile recruiting area.

I’m sure you Kentucky fans think there are unicorns out in your front yard. Time to wake up UK fans and smell the coffee.

ANTOINEFORD

March 14th, 2011
3:57 pm

No it’s true. Smith, Valvano, Holland, Odom, Williams, Prosser, Matt Doherty and Leonard Hamilton all had better ACC winning percentages than Cremins. He was a loser.

5150 UOAD

March 14th, 2011
3:58 pm

It can’t be a guy with any ties to DUKE because then HEWITT FAN and all HIS great Atl Celtics will never even consider TECH. Heaven Forbid Tech never has another Atl Celtic. Please TECH don’t Upset HEWITT FAN. You have to know he is the Gate Keeper of ALL the great Recruits in the state of Georgia.

John

March 14th, 2011
4:02 pm

Is this a Tech basketball blog or something for unemployed uga pusses to spend time on?

HOME GROWN ONLY

March 14th, 2011
4:02 pm

nope nope nope, do not want any DUke or UNC people I WANT GA TECH PEOPLE, HELLO ARE YOU LISTENING?

EITHER BRING BACK CREMINS WHO IS IN THE SAME AGE BRACKETT AS COACH K AND ROY WILLIAMS OR HIRE A FORMER TECH PLAYER, PRICE, NEAL, BARRY, HARPRING, SCOTT, ANDERSON, SALLEY, FERRELL, HAMMONDS, ETC…..

YOU KNOW JEFF, TECH HAS THEIR OWN THOUGH YOU ARE DOING YOUR BEST TO GET THEM TO TAKE A BACK SEAT TO THESE GRADS OF DUKE/UNC.

RAMBLE ON!!!

March 14th, 2011
4:03 pm

NO, NO, NO!!!

Hire a Loser? We just fired the biggest one out there.

Nice Jeff.

HOME GROWN ONLY

March 14th, 2011
4:04 pm

Marshall belongs back at Winthrop, he is to that school what Cremins is to GT. He won’t work

I'm just saying

March 14th, 2011
4:05 pm

Atlanta, GA or Norman, OK… If Capel could halfway recruit in the middle of nowhere, where basketball played second fiddle to footbal, image what he can do back in his old stomping grounds of ACC country. Tech can’t afford not to pursue such a young talented recruiter/coach that players will want to come play for. Hire Capel and Tech will be dancing for a long time

5150 UOAD

March 14th, 2011
4:09 pm

Talk to Perry Clark. He knows about the Tech tradition and the ACC. He may not be a choice to be the coach but I think he can help TECH choose a good new coach.

bascogcjs

March 14th, 2011
4:22 pm

Yea, 5150, Perry’s the man. Great resume.

William Satterwhite

March 14th, 2011
4:28 pm

Capel seems to me to be just like Hewitt, a great recruiter who can bring in great players but who maybe isn’t a great developer of talent- every time Charles Barkley refers to Blake Griffin as a great talent who needs to learn how to actually play basketball, keep in mind who was responsible for teaching Griffin how to play for two years in college.

I’m not sure if it was a joke or not but Capel, like Hewitt, actually wouldn’t be a bad option for Ga St.

heartofdarkness

March 14th, 2011
4:40 pm

Look for a coach who former NBA and college players and coaches would want to entrust their sons for four years of college, and you will probably have a winner.

Paul in RDU

March 14th, 2011
4:44 pm

ANTOINEFORD

March 14th, 2011
3:57 pm
No it’s true. Smith, Valvano, Holland, Odom, Williams, Prosser, Matt Doherty and Leonard Hamilton all had better ACC winning percentages than Cremins. He was a loser.
————————-
Doherty was not in the ACC at the same time as Cremins. He had 1 good season – his first – before failing miserably.
Skip Prosser was not in the ACC at the same time as Cremins
Leonard Hamilton was not in the ACC at the same time as Cremins
Odom won 1 ACC championship and had to have the best player in the country to do that – a guy who has taken his NBA team to 4 championships (and counting).

m dawg

March 14th, 2011
4:46 pm

I m hoping Larry Drew is available or maybe Jim Harrick.