Day 15: No Assistants Were Harmed During this Coaching Search

By Steve DiMiceli

If the reports are correct, it would seem like Greg Amodio is steering Duquesne's coaching search away from hot young assistants hailed as recruiting gurus in favor of crafty veterans to run the men's basketball program. There are advantages and disadvantages to each. For the assistants it's a crap shoot. You have a better chance of catching a high ceiling guy, but at the same time you run a greater risk for a bust. With veteran head coaches, you have a better idea of what they're capable of up front. However, they're more difficult to lure away from their previous commitments than assistants and cost more a lot of times. There is only one certainty with either type of coach; nothing is certain.

Two well hyped assistants emerged in the media as a candidates for Duquesne's job, Orlando Antigua of Kentucky and Jeff Boals of Ohio St. As of Thursday, reports suggest that neither candidate has been contacted  even though some have reported the job is Antigua's to turn down. Both would amount to splash hires and are consider up and coming assistants, yet both are still waiting for a call.

It's not the first time Jeff Boals got snubbed this off season. Both Miami (OH) and his alma mater Ohio passed on him despite comparisons to former Ohio, current Illinois head coach John Groce. While Boals has been a D-1 coach for the better part of 10 years, he has only been an assistant at a top program for three. I don't think it would be unreasonable to think he still needs little more experience. He's still very young (mid 30's) and opportunities will come his way. However, if he doesn't have a MAC resume, he doesn't have an A-10 resume.

People have been penciling Antigua in for the job since the search was announced. Problem is, Greg Amodio wasn't. The Coach Calipari hype machine got behind him in a big way and the rumors began to fly. Antigua has apparently honed his skills as a recruiter under Coach Cal, but his X's and O's are still a giant question mark. Also still young, Antigua was passed over for the job at Tulsa. At this point, it looks like he was never a candidate for the job.

With the smoke and mirror's of any coaching search, it's difficult to discern fact from fiction, but given what we've been told, it seems like the assistants will be passed over yet again. I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if Antigua's name turns up in the Florida International search. I think both will find jobs someday, but I doubt either begins their head coaching careers in the A-10. I think both may need a little more time in the oven and I think Greg Amodio may recognize it as well.