ARIZONA STATE FOOTBALL
Rapid Reaction: ASU reportedly expected to hire Herm Edwards
The shockwaves have not stopped since early Tuesday afternoon when 98.7 FM Arizona Sports Station’s Paul Calvisi reported that former NFL head coach Herm Edwards was a serious candidate for Arizona State’s head football coach opening.
The latest on Wednesday from SunDevilSource.com’s Chris Karpman was that Edwards will become the next coach pending approval from the school’s president Dr. Michael Crow.
Here are the rapid reactions from our hosts and reporters following the news.
RELATED: Edwards reacts to naysayers
Dave Burns, Co-host of Burns & Gambo
Unprecedented. Unnecessarily unprecedented.
ASU didn’t need to be this out of the box in making this expected hire. I understand they pride themselves on being different and doing things differently. But this one to me is fraught with too much risk and not enough upside. He hasn’t coached in years. Wasn’t great at it when he was. Hasn’t been around the college game in 30 years. Couldn’t be more removed from the grind if he tried.
And Ray Anderson used to be his agent which gives the appearance of a buddy doing a buddy a favor. Now there’s extra pressure on Anderson to explain why that’s not what this is. And there’s extra pressure on Edwards to deliver everything that Anderson has told us we should expect out of the program.
The whole thing feels like a giant misstep.
John Gambadoro, Co-host of Burns & Gambo
My initial thoughts on the Herm Edwards forthcoming hiring is that this is a total and utter disaster and will very likely cost Ray Anderson his job.
This has the feel of the good old boys network to me. Hiring a pal. Hiring an old client. Hiring a guy who hasn’t coached in almost 10 years and hasn’t coached in college in almost 30 years. Not interviewing any other candidates.
This is like a bad dream. Herm Edwards may be a great guy. But he wasn’t a good football coach when he coached, getting fired from Kansas City after going 2-14 almost a decade ago. His career coaching record is 20 games below .500. How ASU President Dr. Michael Crow could allow this to go through is beyond me.
Now, I hope I am wrong. I really do. I hope I am made to eat my words. But I do not see how this will work. Edwards was not up for any college jobs or NFL jobs for a reason. This is not an out of the box hire, it is an out of this universe hire. It makes no sense.
Is he even going to build his own staff? Is he really going to keep the coaches that ASU already has in place? Do you understand how absurd that is?
What coach doesn’t want to bring in his own staff? Well, a coach who can’t build a college staff because he hasn’t been around the game at this level since the 1980s. I’m sorry but this isn’t going to get Anderson to where he wants to be – a top-15 team in the country. And the only reason ASU will be a top-15 team in any regard is in the Pac-12 conference and that’s because there are only 12 teams. Big mistake here.
Vince Marotta, Co-host of Bickley & Marotta, editor, reporter
Well, I guess we can throw out that smokescreen philosophy.
Herm Edwards will reportedly be the new head coach at ASU, pending approval from university president Dr. Michael Crow. Since it seems that this plan to champion cronyism was hatched by Ray Anderson years ago, I’d be willing to believe that Dr. Crow is already abreast of the situation and that the Edwards approval is a formality.
I’m shocked. Not really by the decision. Heck, short-sighted bosses hire their buddies for cushy jobs all the time. I’m shocked that there isn’t 100 percent disapproval among members of the fan base. I’ve heard from fans, alumni and former players that believe Herm Edwards is a home-run hire for Arizona State.
The reasons they give: A) he’s on TV, B) he’s a great recruiter/salesman, C) he coached in the NFL and knows what it takes to get players there and D) he coaches 5-star recruits for a week a year in the Under Armour All-Star Game in Orlando with Steve Mariucci (who incidentally, is a better candidate than Edwards — at least he’s led a college program for a year and he had just as many winning seasons in the NFL, but whatever.)
If this is such a no-brainer, why has Edwards been breaking down NFL tape on ESPN since 2008? Why did no other program hungry for greatness recognize this resource right in front of their face and hand him the keys to the program?
Yes, Edwards is on TV every day. So is Phil Swift, the guy who saws a boat in half and puts it back together with Flex Tape. Doesn’t really qualify him to coach a team.
I have no doubt about Edwards’ salesmanship and ability to capture an audience in a living room setting. That’s probably the strength on his resume. It just so happens there’s about 150 other really good recruiters on the same trail that have been in the practice of wooing and landing top recruits that have had a 9-year head start.
And I don’t really understand how Edwards spending a week with top recruits in a barely competitive environment aids ASU, since, you know, as an NCAA head coach, he won’t have the same access to said 5-star recruits. Is Ray Anderson counting on a lot of transfers in the next couple years?
If you were put in charge by Anderson to compile a list of the top-100 candidates for the job at Arizona State, I bet none of you would have had the name Herm Edwards on that list on Sunday. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe you would. And maybe, just maybe this out-of-left-field hire works out — I don’t have a crystal ball, so I don’t know. All I can analyze is the now. And now, this doesn’t make a lot of sense on any level to me.
Paul Calvisi, Host
What’s more mind-blowing: That A$U actually allocated more than $12 million to buy out a football coach or that the $12 million paved the way for… Herm Edwards?! Uh, give us a moment on that.
The best-case scenario is that Edwards becomes the next version of Pete Carroll at USC. That his XL energy belies his birth certificate and Mr. Don’t Press Send empowers his assistants to handle the rigors of game planning. The hope is Herm’s NFL pedigree as a player and coach helps legitimize his CEO role as the face, voice and overall identity of ASU football, not unlike ASU basketball trading Herb Sendek in for nationally known Bobby Hurley.
The worst-case scenario is that Edwards turns out to be Earl Watson in cleats – all philosophy with zero application and less traction.
Did Ray Anderson hire within his comfort zone and fumble the ball in the red zone? Don’t know.
The only certainty is that, effective immediately, the Sun Devil equipment guys need to move the hot seat down the hallway into the office labeled “Vice President of University Athletics.” Fork Him, err, ‘Em.
Mike Jurecki, Co-host of The Blitz with B-Train and Jurecki, reporter
It is astonishing to look back since Arizona State University’s Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson fired Todd Graham after six seasons on Sunday.
It’s been a bizarre 72 hours, which included some of the comments from Anderson during his press conference. He laid out some unrealistic goals moving forward. Ray, this isn’t Stanford or Harvard.
Edwards, 63, has his most recent and only coaching experience in college football at San Jose State as a defensive backs coach from 1987-89. His most recent coaching experience was as the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs from 2006-2008.
Edwards will win the press conferences, but that doesn’t matter. He’s a smooth talker, but if they wanted to hire a motivational speaker, they should’ve went down that road.
A lot of good candidates are good out there, starting with former Texas A&M coach Kevin Sumlin, Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin and Michigan passing game coordinator Pep Hamilton.
Depending on the outcome, we need to judge the hire when it’s announced, unless you wanted Graham for another year.