Monday, April 13, 2009

Headlines: DeFilippo Contract Extension

Brian: Wasn't much news this weekend out of Chestnut Hill this morning. The baseball team opened a can of whoop ass on Wake Forest in the first game of the Eagles Saturday double header, beating Wake 23-2. The lopsided score was as much of a storyline as was senior pitcher JB MacDonald's 8.0 innings of no-hit baseball. In the second game of the double header, the Eagles came from behind to notch a 4-2 victory. On Sunday, the Eagles dropped the final game of the series 5-3. The series win over the weekend pushes the Eagles' record to 22-12, 9-7 ACC, good for a tie with Florida State and second place in the ACC Atlantic Standings.

Jeff: I am trying to get into BC baseball given their success this season but it is just a difficult thing to do. I check the scores at the end of the day or weekend but that seems to be about it. I imagine when the ACC tournament rolls around I might try and catch a little on the radio or tv but that is still weeks away.

Brian: Of course, the big news this afternoon is that Athletic Director Gene DeFilippo was granted a contract extension through 2014. The financials of the deal were not disclosed since BC is a private institution. Jeff, your initial thoughts?

Jeff: I don't have too much to say about it other than I'm not surprised and as of this moment he certainly deserves it. GDF has done more with less than the majority of ADs around the country if not all of them. BC has enjoyed its greatest ten year span of athletic achievement in the three major sports in its history. BC is now poised to be a contender in football and basketball for years and years to come. GDF deserves a lot of credit for this regardless of how many pieces may have been in place prior to his arrival. If his legacy is ever hurt, it will be hurt in a big way if the Spaz hire does not turn out to be a great decision. We will not know that though until his contract would've had to have been renewed or extended so I have no problem with BC throwing some money at him right now.

Brian: While I agree that Gene has done great things for the program, I disagree with the contract extension at this point in time. DeFilippo's contract currently ran until 2011. What was the urgency to extend his contract? My biggest sticking point with this is what you alluded to, Jeff, in that we just don't know how the Spaziani hire will pan out. What if Spaz is a bust as a HC? I'm not saying the Spaziani hire will be good or bad in the long run, but if it doesn't turn out well, the university has now lost all of its leverage in measuring how successful Gene's hire (and the entire situation) was handled. You can't fire Gene now if the football program takes a nosedive; you'd have to buy out his contract.

To make matters worse, the school has now given Gene free reign to hire the next men's head basketball coach and the next men's hockey coach. I can't imagine either Skinner or York's time at BC running past 2014, so Gene will certainly have the opportunity to leave his mark on those two programs (having not hired either Skinner or York). Who knows what the future holds for those two programs, but we seem to be putting way too much trust in Gene to make the right decision for both Al Skinner's and Jerry York's successors.

Now, again, the Spaziani hire could end up being phenomenal for the school and the football program, and DeFilippo could make similarly great decisions about the future men's basketball and men's ice hockey head coaching gigs, but who really knows at this point? Spaz, the next basketball and ice hockey coaches could be all busts. We seem to be placing all the power and the future of the athletics department in Gene's hands. To me, this is a little disconcerting given that Gene has a total of 2 football head coaching hires to his name at BC (one bolted after 2 years and one hasn't coached a single game with the title of "Head Coach"), and 0 hires in men's basketball or men's ice hockey.


Raj said...

I think BC really pooped it on this one. I think Gene has done a lot for the program and we have been very successful under him, but why not wait another year. Was he going somewhere? Was he interviewing other places? (I hope not for his sake).
I would have rather over paid for him next year after seeing an 8+ win season from Spaz, and another NCAA tourney berth by Basketball. Oh well, have to live with this now.

No matter if we take a downward turn, i don't see us buying out Gene before his contract runs up.

Anonymous said...

You guys don't honestly see Skinner staying another 5 years? Where's he going? He doesn't seem to be a top program guy and his legacy at BC will be that he found players that nobody else wanted and made them great, not that he was able to swoon top high school talent and turn those teams into contenders. He has a nice paying gig at a program that is happy to make the tourney and occasionally win a few games. I doubt he wants to end up like Gillespie. There's very little pressure to be great at BC, good, yeah, but not great. And they don't give him shit when he leaves at 3:30 in the afternoon (I used to see him leaving campus all the time on my way to track). I agree that York might not be here another 5 years (he might win one more title and then call it a career) so GDF will probably be replacing him, but I think Skinner might be a lifer...

Brian said...

Al has already been coaching college basketball for 19 seasons and is 56 years old.

I think while he may have another 5 years in him, my hunch is that he'll retire shortly after that. I just don't see Skinner as a Boehim/Calhoun type coaching well into his 60s.

Skinner's current contract runs through 2012-2013. My guess is he'll retire after the 2013 season.