Q Did you make any promises to Pitino regarding a practice facility?
A We talked about it and we told him that we were going through a facility plan and what our aspirations were and he was perfectly content about what I told him. There was no guarantee of a timeline, but he felt very good about it and it was a great conversation.
Q What expectations do you have for him in his first season?
A He asked me that question, and what I’ve told him is I want someone who is managing the program at the highest level, someone who is showing progress in recruiting and leading the players in the right way. I’m not going to put a wins-and-losses metric on him.
Q This is your first major hire at a big program. Are you ready to have your legacy sort of judged by this?
A I don’t look at it that way. I try to put blinders on and focus on what we’re doing. It’s not about me — it’s about the University of Minnesota and our athletic program. And I’m going to do my best every day to work my fingers to the bone to make it work and be excellent.
Q At the same time you know you will always be tied to this, the way Joel Maturi was tied to Tim Brewster.
A That’s the nature of what we do. If I focused on that, it would drive me crazy, literally. I will make better decisions if I focus on what we have in front of us than if I focus on myself, whatever that means.
Q Now that this is over, are you going to look at the women’s basketball program equally hard?
A I evaluate our programs constantly. This is not going to cause me to look at any other program differently. Every other program has different situations and we are constantly evaluating them and trying to help improve them every day.