Have you ever wondered what a 41-84 (.328) win-loss record means for a college basketball coach? Of course not. I mean, I think we usually know what that sort of record entails for a coach. There isn’t a lot of wiggle room for argument with that record. Especially if it is with a program that
supposedly cares about basketball. However, it looks like the DePaul Blue Demons are changing the standards for basketball coaches across the country, as they are reportedly keeping Oliver Purnell as their head coach.
One can only assume that the basketball fan in you just gurgled a little bit of vomit in your mouth when you read that. It should also be noted, since this is really hard to believe, that this is NOT a satire piece. This is real life. DePaul actually wants to retain the services of Oliver Purnell.
Bringing Purnell back must feel like a chop right in the solar-plexes for fans of the program. It is not like DePaul has shown any signs of life or glimpses of improvement under the lackluster coach. In fact, the Blue Demons have been wallowing as Big East Conference bottom feeders since the time Purnell became the coach.
His tenure as DePaul’s main-man-of-I don’t know, has been highlighted by a 12 win season. Yup. 12 wins. Meaning, his golden season, the year in which his product was best, is the equivalent of any other Big East program nearly beheading their coach. Those 12 victories — which now seem miraculous by new DePaul standards — were in Purnell’s second year with the program (2011-12).
Purnell has a seven-year deal with the school. Returning for next season would be just his fifth. It looks as if DePaul AD, Jean Lenti Ponsetto, just wants to ride out the deal and avoid paying two coaches at the same time. There’s not real reason, at least in a basketball sense, to justify not firing Purnell other than saving some loot.
I feel bad for the DePaul fanbase. Purnell is clearly not working for them. Their athletic director seems to not care, however. But hey, at least we still have…
Man, I don’t know. Go get yourself some drinks on me today, DePaul fans. Words can’t describe how bad I feel for you.