The hiring of Kevin Sumlin, three years ago next month, seemed like the best thing to do. After Friday night’s massacre – a 70-7 loss against hated rival Arizona State, no less – his dismissal is the right choice to make.
Tonight, tomorrow, sometime soon.
Does Arizona athletic director Dave Heeke have any other choice? Can Wildcat Nation, already beaten and down for most of the past three years, take another year – or week – with Sumlin?
Pay that man his money and move on. It’s the smart choice. Arizona can’t survive another year of apathy.
You know it’s really bad when a player says in a press conference that it was “embarrassing.”
When you’re comparing a season to one of John Mackovician proportions you know you’re in trouble. Back then, Mackovic was relieved of his duties midway through the season. The smart move is to say, “Thanks but we’ve seen enough.”
Is there any another choice?
When asked about his coaching situation and if he’s worried about his future, Sumlin said, “No, it’s what we sign up for, right? This is a tough deal but as a coach you know that you can’t approach life, a team (or) anything like that. We just gotta keep working at it. That’s what I’m going to do.”
He has no other choice. Arizona may or may not have another game next week, given the number of injuries it suffered and, well, the significance of next week’s game given UA will face the last-place team of the northern division of the Pac-12.
It just prolongs the season of misery.
In a matter of three hours – or 13 seconds after ASU’s D.J. Taylor ran the opening kick back for a touchdown – it was over. And the Twitterverse unleashed a storm, many comments from a disgruntled letterman base calling for Sumlin’s dismissal.
From Shun Brown: CAME IN TALKING ABOUT CHANGING THE CULTURE ! YEA YOU DID THAT FOR SURE ! GETTIN OUR ASS WHOPPED ! IVE BEEN KEEPING MY PEACE SINCE I LEFT AND DID ME WRONG ! BUT YOUR COACHING IS SHIT ! TRUST ME I KNOW BECAUSE I PLAYED FOR YOU !
And Jared Tevis: Can’t even try to be optimistic anymore…We’re not a team with a couple losing seasons, we are a losing program with a losing culture right now. UNACCEPTABLE #BearDown4Life
And the always-positive Jake Fischer: “Fire everybody.”
And that was just a small sample size.
Before the game I said if Arizona stayed close with ASU, Sumlin likely would have bought time for another week but likely was gone by the middle of next month, given that UA still needed to pay him $7.5 million if he’s still around. If he’s gone later than mid-January, it would be just $5 million. Just? In a time when money is tight all over, $5 million seems like a deal.
But Arizona’s football needs a major rebuild, an overhaul from someone who appears to care. Has, at any time, Sumlin shown that he cared over the last three years?
That’s enough time to think about it.
Arizona can’t survive another year of this. Already, the 12-game losing streak has become comical and, of course, historical. Now, four straight losses to the Sun Devils? Gasp!
There’s a reason why players jumped after last season. And continued to do so throughout the last few weeks this season. The team was trending badly and there’s little hope that will change under Sumlin.
Who didn’t see this coming? Truth be told, I gave up on the program (in covering it on a near regular basis) after I was denied a one-on-one interview (for a second time) with offensive coordinator Noel Mazzone by Sumlin’s right-hand man, Dennis Polian, who is listed as the school’s chief of staff. I still don’t know what he does or what his assignment is.
Does it really matter now, given what’s happened over the last three years – and more specifically the last two?
Now all the losing x 12.
I’ll always remember this: On Sumlin’s first day of fall practice in 2018 those in charge of the sound system played the “Boys are Back in Town” by Thin Lizzy, “Gasolina” by Daddy Yankee and Toby Keith’s “As Good as I Once Was.”
It’s time to get new music going, given Arizona had no gasolina Friday night or most nights and Sumlin isn’t as good as he once was.
If Heeke is doing his due diligence, new coaches will be back in town sometime soon. It’s the right move. It’s the only move.