Assistant Coaches

matt

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His resume is alright, but I am not overly impressed by the hire. He has coached at Princeton and Richmond for his entire 10 year coaching career. I would rather have someone who has coached or recruited the midwest or Canada like McNeilly. A coach from a high-major, national program would have been good as well.
 

MNVCGUY

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It's because Ben Johnson was:

A) Just an assistant for 15 years
B) Never worked at any impressive school
C) Perhaps the most important one, he was never promoted by anyone to be associate head coach. For those who say that tittle doesn't matter. Ask our newest assistant if it was different being an associate head coach at richmond than being an assistant.

So yes, we want Ben to be surrounding by the best because his resume was not one for a B1G team. He should have started at a mid major or a cleveland state.
All the things you mentioned are valid reasons people have for being concerned about the hire. But I still think the assistant coach obsession for the vast majority is only being driven by the fact that there were players tied to one of the options.

Only the most hardcore of fans are truly concerned about the assistant coaches on a college basketball staff. I can guarantee most can't name more than a couple assistant coaches around the country and those they have probably only heard of because their name might have been linked to the Gophers at one point or another.
 

CYW5 BornGoph

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All the things you mentioned are valid reasons people have for being concerned about the hire. But I still think the assistant coach obsession for the vast majority is only being driven by the fact that there were players tied to one of the options.

Only the most hardcore of fans are truly concerned about the assistant coaches on a college basketball staff. I can guarantee most can't name more than a couple assistant coaches around the country and those they have probably only heard of because their name might have been linked to the Gophers at one point or another.
Point taken, but it might just be the case that this is EXACTLY where you could look for "the most hardcore of fans".
 

TheBarnyard

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Yeah he's learned from Mooney at Richmond is a great tactician and smart coach. Guy has ties to the DMV area too it seems. I like the hire and don't know what people want? What makes Conroy better than this guy? His nephew? No need to take shortcuts. Get the guys who grind and work together.
I agree with everything you said here, spot on. I’m looking at the bigger picture. I don’t think keeping Conroy for his nephew is the kind of move that will get us to where we want to be.

My expectations For this program may be lower than others. I want an NCAA tournament appearance every other year and a top 5 Big Ten finish every 3 years or so. I just want to be competitive, that’s all. I would be happy with a 50-50 Big Ten record after 5 years.
 

MNVCGUY

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Point taken, but it might just be the case that this is EXACTLY where you could look for "the most hardcore of fans".
True, but I feel confident in saying that most on here know little to nothing about the assistant coaches out there in college basketball right now.

Heck, the only assistant from the 2020-21 Gopher Basketball team that I could name is Conroy and that is because of the Liam Robbins connection. College Basketball assistants just don't get much attention until they become head coaches.
 

CYW5 BornGoph

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True, but I feel confident in saying that most on here know little to nothing about the assistant coaches out there in college basketball right now.

Heck, the only assistant from the 2020-21 Gopher Basketball team that I could name is Conroy and that is because of the Liam Robbins connection. College Basketball assistants just don't get much attention until they become head coaches.
I didn't say we KNEW anything! --just that our interest was... pathologically intense.
 

Gopher Teeth

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It's because Ben Johnson was:

A) Just an assistant for 15 years
B) Never worked at any impressive school
C) Perhaps the most important one, he was never promoted by anyone to be associate head coach. For those who say that tittle doesn't matter. Ask our newest assistant if it was different being an associate head coach at richmond than being an assistant.

So yes, we want Ben to be surrounding by the best because his resume was not one for a B1G team. He should have started at a mid major or a cleveland state.

edit: his former boss at Xavier told Coyle, he'd have to take a leap of faith that Ben is ready
I missed that, do you have a link to that?
 

manderson1984

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It's because Ben Johnson was:

A) Just an assistant for 15 years
B) Never worked at any impressive school
C) Perhaps the most important one, he was never promoted by anyone to be associate head coach. For those who say that tittle doesn't matter. Ask our newest assistant if it was different being an associate head coach at richmond than being an assistant.

So yes, we want Ben to be surrounding by the best because his resume was not one for a B1G team. He should have started at a mid major or a cleveland state.

edit: his former boss at Xavier told Coyle, he'd have to take a leap of faith that Ben is ready
Wasn’t Ben hired as the AHC at Xavier? Doesn’t change your points nor does it need to, but I thought he was. To be fair in MN Richard wouldn’t ever promote him over Kimani.
 

cjbfbp

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And your point is? Ability as a player and ability as a coach don't go hand in hand. Lots of great coaches were not great players.

No point. Just an observation.
 

umn99

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I missed that, do you have a link to that?
It's from the Andy Greder article after Ben was hired. I didn't read it in a negative way but YMMV.


Gophers AD Mark Coyle consulted with Steele before offering Johnson the job on Monday. But at the end of the day, Steele said Coyle had to “take a leap of faith” on Johnson.

“I had to have somebody bet on me. Brad Stevens had to have somebody that was going to bet on him. You can go on and on and on,” Steele said. “It’s about going with your gut, and he’s the best fit for that job.”


The Xavier coach has also said this so I'm guessing he is supportive of Ben getting the job.

Xavier head coach Travis Steele previously said about Johnson: “Ben is an outstanding coach and recruiter that will be a very successful head coach one day. Ben is ‘Steady Eddy,’ he just is. He is the same guy every day. He is highly intelligent, very well thought out. He’s very good at everything. He is great on the floor, he’s great in skill development, he’s got a great offensive mind and he’s got great relationships with our players. He is a really good evaluator and recruiter.”
 

ecoperson

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It's from the Andy Greder article after Ben was hired. I didn't read it in a negative way but YMMV.


Gophers AD Mark Coyle consulted with Steele before offering Johnson the job on Monday. But at the end of the day, Steele said Coyle had to “take a leap of faith” on Johnson.

“I had to have somebody bet on me. Brad Stevens had to have somebody that was going to bet on him. You can go on and on and on,” Steele said. “It’s about going with your gut, and he’s the best fit for that job.


The Xavier coach has also said this so I'm guessing he is supportive of Ben getting the job.

Xavier head coach Travis Steele previously said about Johnson: “Ben is an outstanding coach and recruiter that will be a very successful head coach one day. Ben is ‘Steady Eddy,’ he just is. He is the same guy every day. He is highly intelligent, very well thought out. He’s very good at everything. He is great on the floor, he’s great in skill development, he’s got a great offensive mind and he’s got great relationships with our players. He is a really good evaluator and recruiter.”
This is the part that I like. "... and he’s the best fit for that job."
 

SanDiegoGopherFan

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scroll down and to the right

Yeah, 247 is incorrect. Everything else you look for about BJ at xavier mentions him as just an assistant.

Head Coach Travis Steele needs to replace three members of his coaching staff. Assistant Ben Johnson took the head coaching job at his alma mater, Minnesota. Special assistant Matthew Graves headed to Indiana State where he'll be the Associate Head Coach. Strength and Conditioning Coach Matt Jennings earned a promotion, so the Musketeers are searching for a new men's basketball strength coach.


Jonas Hayes was promoted in 2021 to Crawford Family Associate Head Coach. Hayes, 39, spent the previous three seasons as an assistant on Travis Steele’s staff.

“I am thrilled to announce that we are promoting Jonas Hayes to Associate Head Coach,” said Steele. “Jonas has been instrumental in our recruiting efforts and in the development of our front court players. He brings an incredible amount of energy to our program every day. This is a well-deserved promotion.”
 

manderson1984

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Yeah, 247 is incorrect. Everything else you look for about BJ at xavier mentions him as just an assistant.

Head Coach Travis Steele needs to replace three members of his coaching staff. Assistant Ben Johnson took the head coaching job at his alma mater, Minnesota. Special assistant Matthew Graves headed to Indiana State where he'll be the Associate Head Coach. Strength and Conditioning Coach Matt Jennings earned a promotion, so the Musketeers are searching for a new men's basketball strength coach.


Jonas Hayes was promoted in 2021 to Crawford Family Associate Head Coach. Hayes, 39, spent the previous three seasons as an assistant on Travis Steele’s staff.

“I am thrilled to announce that we are promoting Jonas Hayes to Associate Head Coach,” said Steele. “Jonas has been instrumental in our recruiting efforts and in the development of our front court players. He brings an incredible amount of energy to our program every day. This is a well-deserved promotion.”

Good call on him not technically being the ACH, but to be fair the position didn't exist. I'd argue he was the top/lead assistant with Hayes. I think it's telling that the second Ben leaves, Hayes got the promotion. I think there is a good chance that it didn't happen because Steele didn't want to differentiate between the two. I do remember when he left, that he was getting more responsibly. It's all semantics and it doesn't take away from your original point either way.
 

Bob_Loblaw

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It's from the Andy Greder article after Ben was hired. I didn't read it in a negative way but YMMV.


Gophers AD Mark Coyle consulted with Steele before offering Johnson the job on Monday. But at the end of the day, Steele said Coyle had to “take a leap of faith” on Johnson.

“I had to have somebody bet on me. Brad Stevens had to have somebody that was going to bet on him. You can go on and on and on,” Steele said. “It’s about going with your gut, and he’s the best fit for that job.”


The Xavier coach has also said this so I'm guessing he is supportive of Ben getting the job.

Xavier head coach Travis Steele previously said about Johnson: “Ben is an outstanding coach and recruiter that will be a very successful head coach one day. Ben is ‘Steady Eddy,’ he just is. He is the same guy every day. He is highly intelligent, very well thought out. He’s very good at everything. He is great on the floor, he’s great in skill development, he’s got a great offensive mind and he’s got great relationships with our players. He is a really good evaluator and recruiter.”
This is such an insane paragraph.

First off, someone bet on Brad Stevens at a program in the Horizon League. In THAT program, Brad Stevens as an assistant coach for Todd Lickliter who turned the program around. They didn't just bet on him from gut instinct, they were around him for years and he was a large part of turning Butler into a top program and it was in the Horizon League.

Travis Steele was also an assistant at Xavier for years while Chris Mack had that program humming. This would be the equivalent to if PJ Fleck had 7 more great years at the U and then left and we hired Matt Simon.
 

fan of Ray Williams

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Good call on him not technically being the ACH, but to be fair the position didn't exist. I'd argue he was the top/lead assistant with Hayes. I think it's telling that the second Ben leaves, Hayes got the promotion. I think there is a good chance that it didn't happen because Steele didn't want to differentiate between the two. I do remember when he left, that he was getting more responsibly. It's all semantics and it doesn't take away from your original point either way.
Read it here also.
 
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True, but I feel confident in saying that most on here know little to nothing about the assistant coaches out there in college basketball right now.

Heck, the only assistant from the 2020-21 Gopher Basketball team that I could name is Conroy and that is because of the Liam Robbins connection. College Basketball assistants just don't get much attention until they become head coaches.
Which is ironic, because I am guessing that message boards like this are the reason why coaches are fired willy-nilly all the time.
 

SanDiegoGopherFan

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His resume is alright, but I am not overly impressed by the hire. He has coached at Princeton and Richmond for his entire 10 year coaching career. I would rather have someone who has coached or recruited the midwest or Canada like McNeilly. A coach from a high-major, national program would have been good as well.

Yeah, Ben said we'd be surprised at how many ppl, including from blue bloods, were wanting to talk with him about coming to work here. That was that.

Go gophers!
 

ecoperson

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Yeah, Ben said we'd be surprised at how many ppl, including from blue bloods, were wanting to talk with him about coming to work here. That was that.

Go gophers!
Is it possible that Ben turned them down after talking with them? Maybe he wanted to actually hire his own staff instead of having the 'fan' base hire them for him.
 

builtbadgers

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Is it possible that Ben turned them down after talking with them? Maybe he wanted to actually hire his own staff instead of having the 'fan' base hire them for him.
What does BJ consider blue bloods ? Even if they were the traditional powers they were likely grad assistants, video coordinators etc.. They were not the top assistants from the top programs. There are a couple thousand assistants and it is likely 200 made contact.
 
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