WHILE WAITING for the Marshall football program to come out of hiding and begin spring practice:
(And believe me, with spring break on the MU campus last week, coaches and players were in hiding. Except for those players tweeting from Miami and similar destinations.)
It seems like yesterday that Ohio State assistant Jeff Boals coached at the University of Charleston for three years, Marshall for four and UC for one more. He is in his third season at Ohio State after successful stints at Robert Morris and Akron.
Kevin Keatts, straying again from his dynastic head coaching tenures at Hargrave Military Academy, is in his first season on Rick Pitino's bench at Louisville. Keatts came to Marshall in 2001 after two seasons at Hargrave, then returned to his Hargrave post in 2003, serving eight more seasons.
Keatts' tally at Hargrave: 262 victories, 17 losses, two national prep titles and 103 Division I signees. Yes, that's 10-plus a year.
And in a testimony of how time flies, ex-Herd coach Ron Jirsa has made it to the NIT semifinals in his fifth season under Tubby Smith at Minnesota. The Golden Gophers won three road games to get to Madison Square Garden, including a win last week at Middle Tennessee.
That job became even more impossible when Hurricane Katrina hit on the eve of his first season in New Orleans, and he went 68-84 in five seasons. Not sure Ed Conroy, used to difficult tasks as player and coach at The Citadel, can do much better.
I know, I know. Williams is a Texan and SMU is ready to toss him the megabucks - as the school will do in all sports until its next visit by the NCAA Committee on Infractions. The school has spared no expense in upgrading basketball facilities, even aging Moody Coliseum.
But really? Does Williams want to leave Marquette, which is reportedly paying him $2 million a year anyway, to take over a basketball program facing a DePaul-like welcome in the Big East, which will include double-digit losses to ... Marquette?
(A little Marshall connection here: SMU is chucking up some dough to the search firm of David Braine, Marshall's athletic director way back in the Flock of Seagulls era. Sorry for dredging up that MTV memory.)
Morris rejoined the Jacksonville Sharks over the weekend, serving as the backup behind Omar Jacobs, the Bowling Green quarterback who rang up 56 points on the Herd in 2004. Morris was a Sharks backup in 2010, plus he started three games at "Jack" linebacker.
(Only true Arena nerds can explain that term. I'll plead ignorance.)
Morris was signed after Chris Leak, that ex-Florida Gator, was suspended. It appears Leak didn't take well to a benching and skipped practice. Just guessing, but I doubt Tim Tebow would have tried that.