The Upside of Dino | Syracusefan.com

The Upside of Dino

SWC75

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Dino Babers was just fired as SU football coach this morning so it’s time I did an assessment of what was good and what was bad about his tenure here.

- Dino is the type of person Syracuse University should want to represent them. He is a good human being with fine personal values and projected an air of dignity. His comments in interviews, at news conferences and on his show were always intended be honest, if not revealing and not unkind to the people he was talking about and the people he was talking to.

- He is a colorful and enthusiastic person who always seems to look at life as if it was one of the movies or TV shows he enjoys. He’s clearly not one of those coaches who works 25 hours a day to get the job done and has no awareness of anything else in the world and expects everyone else to be the same way.

- He’s also not a “Coach Prime” type who is all hype, who takes over a program gets rid of anyone there to bring his own people in, brags about how he’s the greatest coach in the world and would likely see us as just a steppingstone to some other program. At Jackson State, Deon Sanders was supposedly trying to bring historically black college back to their former glory when he suddenly jumped to Colorado. Now he’s being mentioned for the Texas A&M job. Dino liked it here and stayed for eight years, trying to elevate our program and wanted to continue to do so. I want somebody like that coaching our teams.

- Dino got off to a good start, giving us a lot of interesting shoot-outs in his first year, beating Clemson in his second years and going 10-3 in his third year. We were back, baby! Our greatest fear is that he would be ‘picked off’ by some other school. Then came an inexplicable collapse and three attempts to get us back up to the level we had thought we’d returned to but it was like a weight lifter who’d attempted too much weight. Injuries and a lack of depth ended each attempt.

- Dino’s teams never gave up and he never “lost the locker room” as we’ve seen in these last two games. His players loved playing for him. Nobody played Clemson closer than we did. Ask Dabo Sweeney if Dino Babers can coach.

- Dino was willing to change his staff and accept new strategies. He came here with a staff of people who had been with him through the successes at Eastern Illinois and Bowling Green and was willing to change them in response to results and bring in some new people. Out defense, despite good talent was terrible and he brought in tony White to run the 3-3-5 and since then our defense has been good. He was willing to bring in a former head coach to replace White when he left. He didn’t have the offensive line to have his quarterback just stay in the pocket so he went to a more versatile running game. Finally, in the face of injuries to his top two quarterbacks, he was able to totally redesign the offense to match the available talent and win a game and come close to winning another in an effort to save his job.

- Dino came relatively cheap in terms of salaries. I suspect the next guy won’t, if he’s the power five coach everybody wants. And the amount you pay your head coach limits the funds available to his staff, who do most of the recruiting and coaching.

- We had a 15 year streak of winning seasons from 1987-2001 where we won 70% of our games. Since then five different coaches in 22 years have won 40 of their games, (Dino was 43%). Maybe that’s just what we are now. Would a new coach do any better than the last five? Any new coach is going to have his own quirks and weaknesses you don’t like. And he’ll face many of the same problems.

- I feel like I’ve lost a friend. All the “don’t let the door hit you on the way out” responses are cruel and unnecessary. He deserves better. I wish he could have coached the Wake Forest game, gone out as a winner, carried off the field by his players like Scott Shafer was. (Wildhack said he was offered the opportunity to coach that game but declined it.) I would like to have seen him offered another position with the school, (he’s 62 and must be thinking of retirement) rather than be ‘fired’. But it is what is.
 
I wonder if he enjoys the area Steve? He seems like a warm weather guy to me when it comes to staying around.
 
I think if Covid 19 had not happened, he would be fired two years ago. Covid gave him two extra years. His overall and ACC records are both below 0.500.
 
I wonder if he enjoys the area Steve? He seems like a warm weather guy to me when it comes to staying around.


He said he likes living here. But I think he was pleading for his job at that point.
 
He said he likes living here. But I think he was pleading for his job at that point.
Possible.

I really thought we had something offensively when QB2 Mahoney scored 62 points...a plug and play type situation. Just surprised me that it just fell apart.
 
Dino Babers was just fired as SU football coach this morning so it’s time I did an assessment of what was good and what was bad about his tenure here.

- Dino is the type of person Syracuse University should want to represent them. He is a good human being with fine personal values and projected an air of dignity. His comments in interviews, at news conferences and on his show were always intended be honest, if not revealing and not unkind to the people he was talking about and the people he was talking to.

- He is a colorful and enthusiastic person who always seems to look at life as if it was one of the movies or TV shows he enjoys. He’s clearly not one of those coaches who works 25 hours a day to get the job done and has no awareness of anything else in the world and expects everyone else to be the same way.

- He’s also not a “Coach Prime” type who is all hype, who takes over a program gets rid of anyone there to bring his own people in, brags about how he’s the greatest coach in the world and would likely see us as just a steppingstone to some other program. At Jackson State, Deon Sanders was supposedly trying to bring historically black college back to their former glory when he suddenly jumped to Colorado. Now he’s being mentioned for the Texas A&M job. Dino liked it here and stayed for eight years, trying to elevate our program and wanted to continue to do so. I want somebody like that coaching our teams.

- Dino got off to a good start, giving us a lot of interesting shoot-outs in his first year, beating Clemson in his second years and going 10-3 in his third year. We were back, baby! Our greatest fear is that he would be ‘picked off’ by some other school. Then came an inexplicable collapse and three attempts to get us back up to the level we had thought we’d returned to but it was like a weight lifter who’d attempted too much weight. Injuries and a lack of depth ended each attempt.

- Dino’s teams never gave up and he never “lost the locker room” as we’ve seen in these last two games. His players loved playing for him. Nobody played Clemson closer than we did. Ask Dabo Sweeney if Dino Babers can coach.

- Dino was willing to change his staff and accept new strategies. He came here with a staff of people who had been with him through the successes at Eastern Illinois and Bowling Green and was willing to change them in response to results and bring in some new people. Out defense, despite good talent was terrible and he brought in tony White to run the 3-3-5 and since then our defense has been good. He was willing to bring in a former head coach to replace White when he left. He didn’t have the offensive line to have his quarterback just stay in the pocket so he went to a more versatile running game. Finally, in the face of injuries to his top two quarterbacks, he was able to totally redesign the offense to match the available talent and win a game and come close to winning another in an effort to save his job.

- Dino came relatively cheap in terms of salaries. I suspect the next guy won’t, if he’s the power five coach everybody wants. And the amount you pay your head coach limits the funds available to his staff, who do most of the recruiting and coaching.

- We had a 15 year streak of winning seasons from 1987-2001 where we won 70% of our games. Since then five different coaches in 22 years have won 40 of their games, (Dino was 43%). Maybe that’s just what we are now. Would a new coach do any better than the last five? Any new coach is going to have his own quirks and weaknesses you don’t like. And he’ll face many of the same problems.

- I feel like I’ve lost a friend. All the “don’t let the door hit you on the way out” responses are cruel and unnecessary. He deserves better. I wish he could have coached the Wake Forest game, gone out as a winner, carried off the field by his players like Scott Shafer was. (Wildhack said he was offered the opportunity to coach that game but declined it.) I would like to have seen him offered another position with the school, (he’s 62 and must be thinking of retirement) rather than be ‘fired’. But it is what is.
Dino was a great guy and I will be forever grateful for him being in my son’s life.

McKinley Williams, III “Bear” is my oldest.

And if Dino ever get a head coaching job anywhere; he will get my youngest son as a player.
 

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