Norwood Teague Q & A: The long, winding road of a coaching search

  • Article by: AMELIA RAYNO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 12, 2013 - 12:21 AM

Gophers AD Norwood Teague on the plans and discussions that led to hiring Richard Pitino.

hide

Gophers AD Norwood Teague on his expectations for Richard Pitino: “I want someone who is managing the program at the highest level.”

Photo: BRIAN PETERSON • brianp@startribune.com ,

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

The past three weeks have been a whirlwind of activity for the Gophers men’s basketball program. The team went to the NCAA tournament, coach Tubby Smith was fired, and then a nine-day search culminated in the hiring of Smith’s replacement, Richard Pitino. Athletic director Norwood Teague sat down with Star Tribune college basketball beat writer Amelia Rayno on Thursday to discuss some of what happened along the way, and to take a look at what’s ahead for the Gophers.

 

Q People have reported that you spoke with Florida coach Billy Donovan and he recommended Pitino to you. Had you looked at Pitino before speaking with Donovan?

A Richard was always on my list. I was going to talk to Billy no matter what. … But Richard was always on our list and our list was pretty tight. I will say this, after sitting down with Richard, I knew within 15 minutes that he was our guy. It was much like when I talked to Shaka [Smart] when I was at VCU.

 

Q Did you talk to him before you talked to Billy?

A I’ve got to be real honest. I can’t remember the time frame. I really can’t. And I don’t want to say something that’s going to get you confused or me confused in the process.

 

Q It has been reported that you offered Flip Saunders the job but set down some requirements as far as choosing his staff that he didn’t like. Is that how it went?

A I read the other day about [Saunders wanting to hire his son, Ryan, and I refused] — and that was not the case. … I always will monitor and help and weigh in, but rarely would I ever put my foot down and tell somebody that they can’t hire someone.

 

Q Did you have a No. 1 candidate on the search?

A No. I had some people that certainly I was intrigued by and I had a lot of information on some new directions that I wanted to go, but I wouldn’t say that we had a clear No. 1.

 

Q Were you close to hiring anyone in the first couple of days of the search?

A There were a lot of things reported that we would offer people that we hadn’t offered and we were close when we weren’t close. It was more of a planned-out, methodical process that played itself out to where we wanted to land.

 

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.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Dallas 6:00 PM
Orlando
Sacramento 6:00 PM
Indiana
Toronto 6:00 PM
Washington
Houston 6:30 PM
Detroit
Philadelphia 6:30 PM
Atlanta
Cleveland 7:00 PM
Minnesota
Oklahoma City 7:00 PM
Memphis
Portland 7:30 PM
Milwaukee
LA Clippers 8:00 PM
San Antonio
Charlotte 8:00 PM
Denver
Phoenix 9:30 PM
Golden State
Washington 0 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 1
NY Islanders 1 3rd Prd :35
Detroit 4
Arizona 1 2nd Prd 8:11
Ottawa 1
Los Angeles 6:00 PM
Boston
Florida 6:00 PM
New Jersey
Carolina 6:00 PM
NY Rangers
Toronto 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
Dallas 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Columbus 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Edmonton 9:00 PM
Calgary
Chicago 9:30 PM
San Jose
Boston College 49 FINAL
Clemson 64
Western Mich 63 FINAL
Eastern Mich 69
NC State 81 FINAL
Georgia Tech 80
Wisconsin 74 FINAL
Iowa 63
Stony Brook 48 FINAL
New Hampshire 63
Notre Dame 72 FINAL
Pittsburgh 76
Providence 66 FINAL
St Johns 75
Davidson 70 FINAL
Saint Josephs 75
Xavier 82 FINAL
Seton Hall 90
Tulane 37 FINAL
Temple 55
Auburn 63 FINAL
Tennessee 71
Texas Tech 58 FINAL
West Virginia 77
Arkansas 56 FINAL
Florida 57
Penn State 58 FINAL
Illinois 60
Lipscomb 73 FINAL
Stetson 75
South Florida 71 FINAL
Tulsa 78
Bradley 58 FINAL
Indiana State 64
UMass Lowell 69 FINAL
Binghamton 76
Green Bay 62 FINAL
Cleveland State 76
Georgetown 67 FINAL
Creighton 40
Coll of Charleston 68 FINAL
Delaware 71
Villanova 68 FINAL
DePaul 55
Vermont 65 FINAL
Hartford 46
TCU 66 FINAL
Iowa State 83
Kennesaw St 51 FINAL
Jacksonville 50
Kansas State 57 FINAL
Kansas 68
Boston Univ 86 FINAL
Lehigh 89
Illinois State 48 FINAL
Loyola-Chicago 45
Albany 77 FINAL
Maine 59
Butler 72 FINAL
Marquette 68
LSU 67 FINAL
Miss State 73
Mount St Marys 77 FINAL
Sacred Heart 71
Richmond 64 FINAL
VA Commonwealth 55
Virginia Tech 70 FINAL
Wake Forest 73
IUPU-Ft Wayne 75 FINAL
Nebraska Omaha 65
Arkansas State 43 FINAL
Georgia State 74
Loyola-Maryland 42 2nd Half 14:20
Army 38
Tenn Tech 43 2nd Half 8:00
Belmont 57
Bethune-Cookman 26 2nd Half 20:00
Florida A&M 16
Valparaiso 55 2nd Half 11:51
Ill-Chicago 42
UAB 48 2nd Half 10:25
TX-San Antonio 39
Idaho State 42 2nd Half 11:09
North Dakota 59
Evansville 41 2nd Half 11:25
Drake 40
Rutgers 39 2nd Half 15:40
Indiana 40
Ball State 38 2nd Half
Miami-Ohio 30
Southern U 5 1st Half 13:43
Alcorn State 8
UNC-Wilmington 16 1st Half 8:56
Drexel 16
Coastal Carolina 13 1st Half 8:21
Gardner-Webb 8
Morgan State 3:00 PM
Howard
William & Mary 29 1st Half 9:39
James Madison 8
North Carolina 12 1st Half 12:28
Louisville 10
Coppin State 3:00 PM
MD-Eastern Shore
Ole Miss 22 1st Half 7:47
Missouri 18
Wichita State 18 1st Half 8:34
Northern Iowa 21
Loyola Marymount 9 1st Half 8:42
Pacific 15
Winthrop 12 1st Half 10:36
Radford 16
George Washington 8 1st Half 12:11
Rhode Island 10
Bryant 14 1st Half 11:00
Robert Morris 14
Long Island 15 1st Half 11:22
St Francis-NY 14
Fair-Dickinson 15 1st Half 7:51
St Francis-PA 19
Massachusetts 14 1st Half 9:19
Saint Louis 16
Georgia 12 1st Half 7:53
South Carolina 15
Central Conn St 15 1st Half 4:42
Wagner 31
SIU Edwardsville 0 1st Half 14:56
Eastern Ill 11
Ohio 3:30 PM
Central Mich
Eastern Ky 3:30 PM
Morehead State
Incarnate Word 3:30 PM
Nicholls
Campbell 3:30 PM
UNC-Asheville
Vanderbilt 3:30 PM
Texas A&M
South Alabama 4:00 PM
ULM
Western Carolina 4:00 PM
UNC Greensboro
Detroit 4:00 PM
Milwaukee
Idaho 4:05 PM
Eastern Wash
Marshall 4:30 PM
Louisiana Tech
Jackson State 4:30 PM
Miss Valley St
Houston Baptist 4:30 PM
Sam Houston St
Louisiana 4:30 PM
Texas State
Denver 4:30 PM
South Dakota St
Oral Roberts 4:30 PM
South Dakota
Texas 5:00 PM
Baylor
Citadel 5:00 PM
Chattanooga
Fresno State 5:00 PM
Colorado State
Yale 5:00 PM
Cornell
Ark-Pine Bluff 5:00 PM
Grambling St
Nebraska 5:00 PM
Minnesota
Hampton 5:00 PM
Norfolk State
Purdue 5:00 PM
Northwestern
Alabama A&M 5:00 PM
Prairie View
Dartmouth 5:00 PM
Princeton
Pepperdine 5:00 PM
St Marys-CA
NC A&T 5:00 PM
Savannah State
Delaware State 5:00 PM
SC State
Western Ky 5:00 PM
Southern Miss
Nevada 5:00 PM
Wyoming
Akron 6:00 PM
Bowling Green
Colgate 6:00 PM
Bucknell
FIU 6:00 PM
Charlotte
Brown 6:00 PM
Columbia
George Mason 6:00 PM
Duquesne
NC Central 6:00 PM
East Tenn St
Saint Peters 6:00 PM
Iona
Alabama 6:00 PM
Kentucky
Abilene Christian 6:00 PM
Lamar
Char Southern 6:00 PM
Liberty
Hawaii 6:00 PM
Long Beach State
New Orleans 6:00 PM
McNeese State
Lafayette 6:00 PM
Navy
Elon 6:00 PM
Northeastern
Fla Atlantic 6:00 PM
Old Dominion
Harvard 6:00 PM
Penn
La Salle 6:00 PM
St Bonaventure
Furman 6:00 PM
Samford
TX A&M-CC 6:00 PM
Stephen F Austin
Duke 6:00 PM
Virginia
Mercer 6:00 PM
Wofford
Northern Ky 6:00 PM
Fla Gulf Coast
USC Upstate 6:00 PM
North Florida
Longwood 6:00 PM
Presbyterian
Ark-Little Rock 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
SE Missouri St 7:00 PM
Austin Peay
CS-Northridge 7:00 PM
UC Riverside
Towson 7:00 PM
Hofstra
UT Martin 7:00 PM
Murray State
San Jose St 7:00 PM
New Mexico
Rice 7:00 PM
North Texas
Toledo 7:00 PM
Northern Ill
Oklahoma 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
San Francisco 7:00 PM
San Diego
Utah State 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Northwestern St 7:00 PM
SE Louisiana
UCF 7:00 PM
SMU
Southern Ill 7:05 PM
Missouri State
Troy 7:15 PM
Texas-Arlington
Jacksonville St 7:30 PM
Tennessee St
Alabama State 7:30 PM
Texas Southern
Stanford 7:30 PM
Washington St
Santa Clara 8:00 PM
BYU
TX-Pan American 8:00 PM
New Mexico St
Northern Ariz 8:00 PM
Southern Utah
Middle Tennessee 8:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Weber State 8:00 PM
Northern Colorado
Chicago State 8:00 PM
Grand Canyon
UC Santa Barbara 9:00 PM
UC Irvine
Memphis 9:00 PM
Gonzaga
Air Force 9:00 PM
UNLV
Cal Poly 9:00 PM
UC Davis
Seattle 9:00 PM
CS-Bakersfield
Montana State 9:05 PM
Portland State
Montana 9:05 PM
Sacramento St
Colorado 9:30 PM
UCLA
UMKC 9:30 PM
Utah Valley U
Mount St Marys 64 FINAL
Sacred Heart 71
Texas-El Paso 53 FINAL
Middle Tennessee 74
Arkansas State 61 FINAL
Georgia State 47
Bryant 84 FINAL
Robert Morris 87
Central Conn St 83 FINAL
Wagner 67
Fairleigh Dickinson 78 FINAL
St Francis-PA 60
Long Island 53 FINAL
St Francis-NY 62
Bethune-Cookman 70 FINAL
Florida A&M 57
Longwood 56 FINAL
Campbell 68
Charleston Southern 40 FINAL
Winthrop 77
Louisiana Tech 68 FINAL
Marshall 67
Ohio U 74 FINAL
Central Michigan 66
Western Mich 61 FINAL
Miami-Ohio 53
Coppin State 58 FINAL
MD-Eastern Shore 66
Incarnate Word 34 FINAL
Nicholls 67
Samford 46 FINAL
East Tenn St 48
Western Carolina 72 FINAL
Furman 84
Gardner-Webb 71 FINAL
Coastal Carolina 65
Liberty 58 FINAL
High Point 41
Presbyterian 46 FINAL
UNC-Asheville 59
Kent State 67 FINAL
Akron 74
Northern Ill 65 FINAL
Ball State 62
Houston 66 FINAL
Cincinnati 69
SIU-Edwardsville 65 FINAL
Eastern Illinois 48
Eastern Kentucky 58 FINAL
Morehead St 76
Holy Cross 67 FINAL
American Univ 61
Army 62 FINAL
Loyola-Maryland 53
Niagara 53 FINAL
Manhattan 46
Lehigh 78 FINAL
Boston U 71
Navy 65 FINAL
Lafayette 60
Saint Josephs 57 FINAL
Davidson 52
Duquesne 56 FINAL
Fordham 46
George Washington 87 FINAL
George Mason 52
St Bonaventure 77 FINAL
Massachusetts 57
Milwaukee 64 FINAL
Youngstown St 87
Jacksonville 78 FINAL
Kennesaw St 64
North Florida 49 FINAL
USC Upstate 61
Buffalo 75 FINAL
Eastern Michigan 53
St Marys-CA 41 2nd Half 7:58
Pepperdine 38
Nebraska Omaha 35 2nd Half 11:21
IUPUI 48
Houston Baptist 44 2nd Half 14:06
Sam Houston St 36
Mercer 50 2nd Half 4:00
(25) Chattanooga 66
No Dakota State 45 2nd Half 11:05
South Dakota St 61
Oral Roberts 45 2nd Half 11:58
South Dakota 59
Southern Miss 47 2nd Half 8:02
Western Ky 48
TX-San Antonio 38 2nd Half 12:13
UAB 53
East Carolina 47 2nd Half 7:18
Tulane 51
South Florida 46 2nd Half 7:39
Memphis 39
New Mexico St 40 2nd Half 18:15
TX-Pan American 34
Utah Valley U 38 2nd Half 5:24
UMKC 48
Jackson State 37 2nd Half 15:39
Miss Valley St 39
Louisiana 49 2nd Half 5:04
Texas State 54
South Alabama 32 2nd Half 8:17
ULM 44
Saint Louis 54 2nd Half 11:09
Dayton 64
Cleveland State 55 2nd Half 5:15
Oakland 50
Grand Canyon 56 2nd Half 11:00
Chicago State 35
UCLA 42 2nd Half
Oregon 33
Washington St 39 2nd Half
(12) Stanford 37
Alabama A&M 3:00 PM
Prairie View
Ark-Pine Bluff 3:00 PM
Grambling
Southern U 3:00 PM
Alcorn State
Kansas State 9 1st Half 11:22
Texas Tech 10
UNLV 7 1st Half 10:34
Air Force 18
UCF 15 1st Half 8:31
Tulsa 19
UNC Greensboro 18 1st Half 7:56
Wofford 17
Delaware State 21 1st Half 9:36
SC State 18
San Diego State 18 1st Half 8:37
Utah State 17
Sacramento St 24 1st Half 10:10
Montana 16
Hampton 29 1st Half 8:04
Norfolk State 20
NC A&T 17 1st Half 8:40
Savannah State 13
Toledo 14 1st Half 8:27
Bowling Green 15
Marist 15 1st Half 11:22
Iona 13
Bucknell 20 1st Half 6:18
Colgate 22
North Dakota 22 1st Half 5:08
Idaho State 22
Ark-Little Rock 3:30 PM
Georgia Southern
BYU 4:00 PM
Santa Clara
Gonzaga 4:00 PM
Portland
Pacific 4:00 PM
Loyola Marymount
Colorado State 4:00 PM
Fresno State
New Mexico 4:00 PM
San Jose St
UC Davis 4:00 PM
UC Santa Barbara
San Diego 4:00 PM
San Francisco
New Orleans 4:00 PM
McNeese State
TX A&M-CC 4:00 PM
Stephen F Austin
Old Dominion 4:00 PM
Florida Atlantic
Tenn Tech 4:00 PM
Belmont
Eastern Washington 4:00 PM
Idaho
Stetson 4:00 PM
Lipscomb
Washington 4:30 PM
California
USC 4:30 PM
(7) Oregon State
IUPU-Ft Wayne 4:30 PM
Western Ill
Abilene Christian 4:30 PM
Lamar
Northwestern St 4:30 PM
SE Louisiana
SE Missouri St 4:30 PM
Austin Peay
Portland State 5:00 PM
Montana State
Columbia 5:00 PM
Brown
Northern Colorado 5:00 PM
Weber State
Charlotte 5:00 PM
FIU
(19) Princeton 5:00 PM
Dartmouth
Penn 5:00 PM
Harvard
UT Martin 5:00 PM
Murray State
Troy 5:00 PM
TX-Arlington
Morgan State 77 FINAL
Howard 64
Alabama State 5:30 PM
Texas Southern
Jacksonville St 5:30 PM
Tennessee St
Wyoming 6:00 PM
Nevada
Oklahoma St 6:00 PM
Iowa State
CS-Bakersfield 6:00 PM
Seattle
La Salle 6:00 PM
VA Commonwealth
Cal-Irvine 6:00 PM
Cal Poly
Fla Gulf Coast 6:00 PM
Northern Ky
Southern Utah 7:00 PM
Northern Ariz
Green Bay 7:00 PM
Illinois-Chicago
Cal State Fullerton 9:00 PM
Long Beach St
CS-Northridge 9:00 PM
Hawaii
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which of these teams is the most frustrating to watch right now?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close