Ciarrocca on PSU: “I really wanted to coach at a school where I felt like we had a legitimate chance to win a national championship"

Goldmember

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Total non-issue. He states, outright, in the interview that he moved to PSU because it’s his home state’s team. Anyone following this, already knew that. Anyone else has an agenda.

And he makes it obvious, after blowing some obligatory smoke up the ass of The PSU media, that this is the real reason he left MN.

He even prefaces all of his remarks by noting that his position at Minnesota was “a very comfortable situation”.

Until 7 years ago, when PJ hired him, he had never lived further than 4 hours from where he was born. PJ catapulted his career to a whole new level, where he could chose to work closer to home without sacrificing prestige or pay (a very rare level of achievement for college coaches).
 

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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Total non-issue. He states, outright, in the interview that he moved to PSU because it’s his home state’s team. Anyone following this, already knew that. Anyone else has an agenda.

And he makes it obvious, after blowing some obligatory smoke up the ass of The PSU media, that this is the real reason he left MN.

He even prefaces all of his remarks by noting that his position at Minnesota was “a very comfortable situation”.

Until 7 years ago, when PJ hired him, he had never lived further than 4 hours from where he was born. PJ catapulted his career to a whole new level, where he could chose to work closer to home without sacrificing prestige or pay (a very rare level of achievement for college coaches).
I heard his family is there.

That makes a lot more sense / was the talk long before this rouge quote.
 

Lakeville Goldy

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For all we know, Callahan and Simon did the core analysis and came up with the game plans for each week. They were, and still are as far as I know, the running and passing game (oh wait, sorry, "assistant coordinator" :rolleyes: ) coordinators.
Or there's some off the field coach that runs the offense like Jerry Kill will at TCU! :)
 

Mohawk72

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What’s interesting to me is that I don’t think I’m in the minority in my thinking that Simon’s play calling was better than KC’s... I like the system we ran last year and I suspect KC deserves a fair amount of credit for that. However, these comments are head scratching to me, as KC has been propelled ahead significantly from his time working for PJ.
My feelings exactly!
 

hungan1

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Simon is a homer hailing from South Metro. I can see him running the offense as the new OC honcho if Sanders move on to his next gig. My hunch is Simon wants to stay where his family is just like Ciarrocca wanting to be near his family in Pennsylania.
 
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Johnob2

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I agree that a lot of this sounds like the sort of things fans want to hear when they hire a new coach and we shouldn't take it as a jab at us.

I wish KC all the best of luck moving forward (apart from when they play us) and I also really liked the look of our offense in their first game without him.
 

hungan1

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I think we are interpreting things too much. Kirk and PJ are friends. We know that his family is back in Pennsylvania, and he has been trying to get close to them. IMHO, the Penn State job was what he has been coveting as a native Pennsylvanian.

PJ and Kirk crossed paths in their coaching career. They spent a year together at Rutgers 2010. Kirk was Co OC/QB Coach 2008-2010 until he was fired by Greg Schiano. PJ was WR coach 2010-2011. Remember, PJ said he likes to hire coaches who have been fired.

Kirk went to coach QBs at Richmond on 2011. Then, he coached RBs at Delaware on 2012. PJ hired Kirk to be his OC/QB coach at WMU 2013-2016, and he follow PJ to MN.

He may have misspoke about going to a place where he is more likely to win a national title. He has always said he encourages his coaches to follow their dreams.

Wouldn't it be odd if MN under PJ Fleck actually wins a natty ahead of Franklin?
 
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skauma

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Fleck basically said the same thing about culture when he came to Minnesota, which is why Kill got so pissed.
 

hungan1

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Coach speak reaction to coach speak depends on juxtaposition.

If you were fired or stepped down and the new coach says he is establishing a winning culture, it is your duty to say that it's an attack on your culture. Those are fighting words and you are trained in the best Pavlovian tradition to look for those.

You are as sharp as a razor listening to the very words that you perceived crucifies you.

For the newbie coach, you are enraptured with the excitement you want to tell the world what they have been waiting to hear with your own coach speak. You forget to acknowledge the accomplishments of your predecessor(s) in the preamble. At the very least you are forgiven except for the guy(s) you replaced. There are no standard generic coach speak format written for coaches accepting a new gig. They are looking for the disclaimers in your conclusion alluding to building upon the successes of the previous coaches.

If it happens to you and your best friend and colleague abandons boat ship for for a bigger and better one, you get that Pavlovian twitch. You are human. Luckily, you really are true friends and you want what is best for your friend. After cooling off emotions as the video showing PJ Fleck visibly shaken a little, he recovers emotionally. In coach speak, he says that he is happy for Kirk. He thanks him for everything that he has done. He did said it felt like a divorce. PJ Fleck is a class act.
 
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KillmeNow

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None of us will EVER know the exact absolute full story/whole truth, all any of us can do is speculate. Well, here is my attempt to decipher what happened.

Fleck is a HUGE personality kind of person. His assistant coaches are always going to have to live in his shadow. If Minnesota wins a B1G conf title and/or a Natl Title, who will get the vast majority of the credit? The assistant coaches? lol No way, Fleck will get a friggin Statue erected in his honor, and his assistants, if they don't all go and take head coaching jobs the next season, will get SOME, a small amount of praise, from US, the diehards on GH, but the vast majority of the public, all the bandwagoners, will see only Fleck, Fleck this, Fleck that, Fleck, Fleck, Fleck....

Minnesota has not been considered a place where a coach can succeed at the highest level, so any coach who does do that, will be seen as a superhero.

So, why not go to a program where the coach has been there for a long enough period, that you can say, why hasn't he gotten his program up to the point of being even with OSU yet? What is missing? What is he doing wrong? Well, in comes a new coordinator, and then PSU beats OSU in 2020 or 2021 and MAYBE, just maybe, some of the right people will credit the new coordinator, as much as or more than the Head Coach who didn't do it before that coordinator showed up? Then that coordinator starts getting calls from not only schools wanting head coaches, but the NFL.


There, that is my theory. No need for there to be bad blood, although maybe there is some, maybe like all breakups, some misplaced words or something said that wasn't said absolutely perfectly, was misunderstood? Maybe Fleck feels a little betrayed? People with larger than life personalities sometimes don't understand how someone else might not want to be just a loyal follower. So I'm saying he just didn't want to live in Fleck's very large and overreaching shadow. My guess is we are going to go through a lot of coordinators in the coming years. UMn will become a revolving door of new coordinators all wanting to learn from the master, and then move on to places where their light can maybe shine a little brigher and not be totally absorbed and overshadowed by The MAN, The Personality, THE FLECK.


Doesn't Saban go through a lot of coordinators, too? I take this as a positive, totally.


Another aspect, alot of us, before the medical problems kicked in and overshadowed what he had going on here, started to like Kill and his brick by brick thing. And Kill had some guys on his staff that had been with him for decades. Kill was NOT a huge personality, he was a much softer spoken guy, he was a builder and took more time building. His lower key personality needed more time. Fleck enters a living room and wows some parents and their son/the recruit. Kill? Not so much. But both were/are respected throughout the coaching ranks while they were/are coaching here. So we went from having a low key coach who garnered long time, even lifetime loyalty you could argue, from his staff. Granted once reaching the P5 level, that may have changed. Very few schools went looking for NIU assistants to fill head coaching positions, much less the schools he coached before NIU, and the ones who did, probably didn't offer much more than they were making working for Kill, so... my point being, we went from a low key coach, with a staff that had more experience/years working for Kill, than any other coaching staff in the country. I know, I remember bragging about that fact to some non-Gopher fans. To now we have a very high energy coach, who is and will always be the center of attention, the focus of the program. So maybe having Kill and his loyal bunch of assistants for those years, got us used to thinking that is how things just are. But that is NOT how they are. Guys like Kill can keep assistants around. Had he not had his health issues, and started having more and more success here, going from 8 wins seasons, to 9 and 10 and 11 win seasons, the loyalty of those assistants would finally have been truly tested, and even Kill would have lost all of his assistants over time, I'm pretty sure. Or if not because other schools stole them away, maybe because in time fans would recognize that they needed to be upgraded to get beyond that 9-11 game win level? But with Fleck getting us to 11 wins in just his 3rd season, and his getting most of the credit, of course his assistants are going to want to go elsewhere, we should strap ourselves in for a wild ride and get used to assistants coming and in for a year or two, 3 at the most, and then bolting for greener pastures. And the whole "chance to win a Natl Title" thing? lol He was just kissing his new bosses arse is all that is. Maybe trying to take some of the shine off of Fleck, but hey, that will just make Fleck look THAT MUCH BETTER when he gets UMN another Title before PSU gets another!!!!
 

KillmeNow

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So...? He's not a lap dog follower type? And he's not a young high energy guy? And he's from Pennsylvania and wanted to play for PSU but wasn't good enough? So like Herb Brooks, he wants to make up for not making the team by coaching the team? WOW, go figure. lol

Nothing to see here.
 

KillmeNow

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To me he’s saying it can happen at Penn St and can’t accomplish that at Minnesota, and who is the HC at Minnesota???

He's old, maybe he wants it to happen while he is still coaching? lol. So like next year or the year after? At Minnesota, it may have taken a few more years to get there? Especially with him on the staff, lol. We'll get their quicker now that he's gone to help the opposition suck more. j/k. But seriously, never diss a guy for going home. And loyalty in big time sports is something only found in followers and losers who don't see themselves as winners in their own right. I'm VERY GLAD that Fleck isn't hiring losers onto his staff, but instead hiring guys who think they are winners, and want the credit for what they do. Which will mean Fleck will probably go through a lot of assistants. I mean, it's rare you find a true master of what they do, that is willing to play 2nd fiddle to someone else who gets all the credit. They are out there, but they are few and far between in todays culture of anyone can be a star for doing almost anything.
 

Spoofin

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So...? He's not a lap dog follower type? And he's not a young high energy guy? And he's from Pennsylvania and wanted to play for PSU but wasn't good enough? So like Herb Brooks, he wants to make up for not making the team by coaching the team? WOW, go figure. lol

Nothing to see here.
Maybe the raise in pay and program status helped too.
 

KillmeNow

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The only place I have heard that going back to PA was a factor was here on GH. Never from KC. Seems like nothing more than an assumption and something folks want to believe.
Watch the video! Maybe?
 

KillmeNow

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Total non-issue. He states, outright, in the interview that he moved to PSU because it’s his home state’s team. Anyone following this, already knew that. Anyone else has an agenda.

And he makes it obvious, after blowing some obligatory smoke up the ass of The PSU media, that this is the real reason he left MN.

He even prefaces all of his remarks by noting that his position at Minnesota was “a very comfortable situation”.

Until 7 years ago, when PJ hired him, he had never lived further than 4 hours from where he was born. PJ catapulted his career to a whole new level, where he could chose to work closer to home without sacrificing prestige or pay (a very rare level of achievement for college coaches).
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

This. Amen. Exactly!
 

PitinoFan

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Yeah, PJ pretty much let Kirk run his own show, and just gave him a big raise to $1 million per year, which would have put him close to the top 20 for assistant coaches. IMO, that move was a bit of a risk for Kirk. Expectations are a little higher now.
 

KillmeNow

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Exactly!!! PJ knows exactly what happened. WOW, just so impressed with this man! We are SO BLESSED to have him as our head coach, I just can't imagine the heights we can reach with him at the helm, all while going without any scandals, I'm hoping. Odds are in our favor, although you never can know for sure. But honestly, and I mean this from the deepest depths of my soul, if Saban offered to come coach at Minnesota for 2 million a year, I'd be one of those saying NO, we don't want you, we'd rather keep PJ for 3-4 times the money. Gopher Nation is on the rise! It's happening, Gopher fans just need to accept it and enjoy the ride!!!
 

KillmeNow

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Maybe the raise in pay and program status helped too.
Yeah, sure. Absolutely. Nothing but positives for him. 100% behind the move! Just wish the job opening had been UPenn, vs PSU, but hey, it is what it is. Will help make the future PSU vs UMn games a little more interesting, if he's still there.
 

Ozzy&Ray

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People would rather have Simon/whoever new guy is over KC? If you gave every program in the Big Ten the option of KC vs Simon/new guy, there isn't one that would pick Simon/new guy.

KC is a loss. Everyone was singing his praises, until he left. Then he was just average, and now some saying it was probably Simon/Callahan doing the game plans.

It is ok to admit he is a loss. Then hope that Simon/New guy do well. His leaving doesn't mean sky is falling, but it is a loss. The gophs and PJ would be better off with him than without him in the near-term.
 

Jeshurun

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People would rather have Simon/whoever new guy is over KC? If you gave every program in the Big Ten the option of KC vs Simon/new guy, there isn't one that would pick Simon/new guy.

KC is a loss. Everyone was singing his praises, until he left. Then he was just average, and now some saying it was probably Simon/Callahan doing the game plans.

It is ok to admit he is a loss. Then hope that Simon/New guy do well. His leaving doesn't mean sky is falling, but it is a loss. The gophs and PJ would be better off with him than without him in the near-term.
Hypocritical post. You’re accusing people of twisting a loss into a positive (in other words being a fan). All you do on here is twist anything positive into a negative. We were a terrible team destined to get destroyed by Auburn in your worldview, and now that KC has moved on all of the sudden it’s a terrible loss.
 

Spoofin

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Hypocritical post. You’re accusing people of twisting a loss into a positive (in other words being a fan). All you do on here is twist anything positive into a negative. We were a terrible team destined to get destroyed by Auburn in your worldview, and now that KC has moved on all of the sudden it’s a terrible loss.
There is a very active thread on this site right now where a poster is being mobbed for suggesting a way he feels our offense could improve. Improvement from this year seems impossible from that thread yet in this one folks are downplaying the loss of the guy who headed that offense. That seems rather hypocritical as well.
 
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