Friday, July 30, 2010

Disaster For Drexel

I haven't commented yet on the situation at Drexel, but it's worth mentioning that two of their players have been suspended indefinitely after a botched robbery. Much of the robbery was caught on surveillance tape, so it doesn't seem too likely that they'll be found innocent. Kevin Phillip is a bench player and won't be much of a loss, but Jamie Harris was the team's leading scorer and assist man last season. Considering the fact that it's highly likely that neither of those players will suit up for Drexel again, this is a disastrous loss for Bruiser Flint's squad.

This is a relatively minor story because Drexel really just isn't that relevant right now. They've never been a huge program, and are not even part of Philadelphia's Big Five. If you've ever talked to somebody who is or has recently been a student or staff at Drexel you'll know that they're a bit sensitive about that, and like to argue that Philly really has a Big Six (officially they're in the "City 6", although few people are aware of that compared to the relatively well known "Big Five").

That said, I actually thought Drexel would be decent this coming season. I had projected them fourth in the Colonial, and in the most recent BP68 I actually listed them as a long shot bubble team. Obviously they can forget about that now, and will not contend for the Colonial title any longer.

This story does bring up for the first time the serious possibility that Bruiser Flint's days at Drexel are numbered. After a fairly succesful first few season, including a few NIT trips, they haven't finished higher than fourth in the Colonial since the 2003-04 season. And over the past three seasons they're a combined 26-28 in conference play. It's possible for coaches at schools without a ton of basketball tradition to continue to float along for many years without seriously contending for any titles as long as they can keep the team decent and competitive, and Bruiser Flint definitely has achieved that. But a key player getting in this much trouble is the type of catalyst that can wake an athletic department up to the fact that they might need a change.

I'll be shocked if Bruiser Flint is fired before the end of the 2010-11 season, but if the team finishes poorly and doesn't develop a good young core for going forward I wouldn't be completely surprised if he is let go after the season.

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