The Arizona Desert Lamp

Stumbling into the post-Olson era

Posted in Uncategorized by Evan Lisull on 24 October 2008

In the wake of the exposure of Lute’s hidden retirement plans (broken by voice immodulation sufferer sports announcer Dick Vitale), there was the immediate question of who would take over as head coach. Of course, Lute hadn’t made things easier for us by essentially forcing O’Neill out last spring. Next in line would be Mike Dunlap, who just came into the program last year from the Denver Nuggets.

However, according to (through Deadspin), Dunlap didn’t warm up to being an interim fill-in for the program, and turned down the offer. This leaves Russ Pennell, the former ASU assistant brought in last spring, who will reportedly accept the offer (God, we hope) to serve as interim head coach for the year.

As Deadspin put it, “. . .this is the kind of thing that dooms programs. Despite all their success under Olson—their streak of 24 straight tournament appearances may be in jeopardy—without the right move now, basketball at Arizona could be set back a decade.” Lute indubitably has brought great things to the UA, but the way he has handled himself over the past year or so will leave a shameful tarnish on the legacy of the Silver Fox.


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