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lewylew
03-15-2011, 08:05 AM
I don't argue a bit with the idea that a declining program would and probably should consider a change, but it is interesting to watch the mental gyrations that are necessary to give any and all credit for Maine's accomplishments to Walsh and the players, while placing all the blame for losses and missed opportunities on Whitehead.

When Whitehead teams win, it's because of Walsh players like Howard. When Whitehead teams lose-- with or without Walsh players-- it's his fault.

When Whitehead teams win with his players-- like the two frozen four appearances with Ben Bishop-- it's an "easy road", so again, Whitehead gets no credit. When Whitehead teams lose-- it's his fault.

When the current team wins, it's evidence of how talented the kids are-- despite and in direct opposition to the assertion that Walsh and Grant were better recruiters than Whitehead-- and of how Whitehead fails to develop players, use them appropriately, or motivate them to improve. When the current team loses, it's not because the players aren't talented enough, or because they don't apply their talents appropriately, it's because Whitehead is playing the wrong players, or giving the right players wrong instructions, or telling his assistant coaches to not do sensible things or to shut up.

Sure, the buck stops with the head coach-- always. While true, that's a necessarily arbitrary distinction-- it's because somebody has to take responsibility, not because the coach actually does everything. I just have difficulty swallowing the two diametrically opposed ideas, that there's a big talent gap between Walsh recruits and Whitehead recruits that allows for the reassigning of credit for the first few years from Whitehead to Walsh, and then simultaneously Whitehead's teams underachieve, because they are "just as talented" as certain past Maine squads, some under Walsh, but haven't reaped the same results. Shouldn't it be one or the other-- not both-- even if it's agreed that the program needs a change?

Whitehead isn't and will never be near the level that Walsh was. Walsh was a great tactician, motivator, evaluator, and recruiter....one of the best. Early in his start at Maine, Whitehead inherited a program positioned to compete for the title every year and was able to recruit based on that and the legacy that Walsh had left behind. As time goes on and Maine drops out of the limelight, the ability to recruit wanes significantly. If the present course for this program is the one they stay with then Maine will further sink into mediocrity and wallow with the likes of UML, Providence, and UVM hoping to crack the top 4 in HE every once in a while and will relish a Hockey East Championship as much as we used to relish a NCCA Title once upon a time.

gscott13
03-15-2011, 08:31 AM
Encouraging news last night on the local sports segment. Nyquist is consulting with his family this week about returning to Maine. He should have a decision by the end of the week. No mention of the Red Wings applying pressure for him to leave.


http://www.pressherald.com/sports/nyquists-future-tied-to-black-bears-hopes_2011-03-15.html

http://www.pressherald.com/blogs/lenzi/117942629.html

sounds to me like nill thinks it's time for him to move on to the next step...

gscott13
03-15-2011, 08:59 AM
evidently, patenaude has selected the guy from southern illinois as the new pres...

http://new.bangordailynews.com/2011/03/14/news/bangor/system-chancellor-nominates-s-illinois-university-provost-for-um-president/

goblue
03-15-2011, 09:37 AM
Re:dmj.

He's a troll,right..?

Articulate enough,yes,but he's clearly enjoying the spectacle of his enemy's ongoing train-wreck.

Let's all visit the UNH thread when the Wildcats lay down like little girls in the NCAAs yet again,and see how reasonably he wants to chat with us about THAT! :)

Hey, hey, hey, Fishman! I'm pretty sure dmj is a fan of MC -- certainly not a UNH fan. Which of course will not stop Maine fans from dumping on UNH if (we make it) and when we lose in the NCAAs. (Unless, of course, you're -- ahem -- out on the golf course.) That said, I do agree with dmj's comments. You can't credit the players for a win and berate the coach for a loss.

The thread title has a deeper meaning than meets the eye -- especially if one were to put "2010-" in front of the 2011. It was an off season for you, and I do hope that better days lie ahead. You can blame the coach or whatever, but eventually it's the players who make the difference, and you had some good ones on this year's team. Unfortunately, your goal net had a "help wanted" sign over it for most of the year.

I suspect your fortunes will improve, and though unlikely, there is the possibility that Maine will play at least another game this season given a few odd scenarios playing out. And if not, and if Maine's slide continues next year and beyond, you will eventually bottom out and climb back up. BU, BC and UNH have had strings of bad seasons. Most fans have long hoped for a change in the composition of the "top 4", and this year that has happened with the advent of MC's success, built upon last year's. And NU could surprise everybody as well.

I take a darwinist approach to many matters in life, including hockey; hence there will always be a competitive tension between teams to survive (= win = succeed.) As I've said in past years, I never count Maine out.

Good luck...

amherstblackbear
03-15-2011, 10:22 AM
http://www.pressherald.com/sports/nyquists-future-tied-to-black-bears-hopes_2011-03-15.html

http://www.pressherald.com/blogs/lenzi/117942629.html

sounds to me like nill thinks it's time for him to move on to the next step...

Got to love those pairwise scenarios in that one article...

I stopped paying attention after the first line: Merrimack defeats Northeastern for the Hockey East championship.

amherstblackbear
03-15-2011, 10:24 AM
Unfortunately, your goal net had a "help wanted" sign over it for most of the year.

I suspect your fortunes will improve

I appreciate the effort, but it's pretty hard to reconcile these two statements.

dmjossel
03-15-2011, 11:57 AM
What is your infatuation with defending Whitehead? The program is in utter disarray. It's a what have you done for me lately business. He kept the program in good shape for 6 years, but the last four have been a certifiable disaster.

I'm not. I've actually got no stake in him keeping his job whatsoever. I can certainly see the position that his performance is not sufficient, and that problems warrant a change.

What I find curious is that judging on the performance doesn't appear sufficient for some people-- that any positive aspects of anything during Whitehead's tenure are reassigned to Walsh, to Grant, or to the players themselves, while the negatives only are heaped on Whitehead. I suppose if the guy inspires no loyalty or admiration that's also part of the problem, but I'm just curious as to why that is.


Re:dmj.

He's a troll,right..?

Articulate enough,yes,but he's clearly enjoying the spectacle of his enemy's ongoing train-wreck.

Let's all visit the UNH thread when the Wildcats lay down like little girls in the NCAAs yet again,and see how reasonably he wants to chat with us about THAT! :)

Troll? I don't think so. I'm not gleefully chuckling over Maine's loss, although I am celebrating Merrimack's win. I don't particularly enjoy discussions which call for people to lose their jobs, even when it is justified. It's not something to be done lightly. The recent changes at Providence and UML I think are, without a doubt, justified. Such changes at Maine or at BU I think are more debatable.


You are far too, rational for this crowd.

Umm... thanks?


Long post that in the end you sum up in one sentence. Tell us how the team has done since Grant was kicked to the curb? If you were a Maine fan would you be satisfied with the record the last 4 or 5 years. What do you think will change in coming years when the same plans are repeated over and over.

I think it really depends on what you mean by "if you were a Maine fan". If what you mean is, if I were not myself, but were a Maine fan, with a recollection of Maine's past performances and expectations set accordingly, then I suppose it's possible I would not be satisfied, if I was convinced-- as some here are-- that all the other pieces are in place and that a head coach change only means a near-instant return to success.

However, if what you mean is that if I, with my own background and expectations, changed my loyalties tomorrow for some reason and began rooting for Maine-- I probably would be satisfied. Maine usually makes the playoffs. They get home ice more often than not. They've been to the NCAAs several times in the past decade. The coach's career winning percentage is respectable. So, yes, I'd have a hard time in that position saying that a guy that wins more often than he loses, competes for titles, needs to be replaced. I'd say that calls for replacing Whitehead are more justified than calls to replace Parker, but less justified than the calls to replace MacDonald and Army.


Whitehead isn't and will never be near the level that Walsh was. Walsh was a great tactician, motivator, evaluator, and recruiter....one of the best. Early in his start at Maine, Whitehead inherited a program positioned to compete for the title every year and was able to recruit based on that and the legacy that Walsh had left behind.

That may all be true, but it doesn't actually address the question. Aside from what Walsh was able to do with it, what is it about Maine's program-- which was unexceptional before Walsh elevated it-- which means that a winning coach who isn't competing for titles every year isn't good enough? There are only so many programs that can compete for a title every year. Even BC and BU have off-decades, and NoDak hasn't won a title in a decade.



As time goes on and Maine drops out of the limelight, the ability to recruit wanes significantly. If the present course for this program is the one they stay with then Maine will further sink into mediocrity and wallow with the likes of UML, Providence, and UVM hoping to crack the top 4 in HE every once in a while and will relish a Hockey East Championship as much as we used to relish a NCCA Title once upon a time.

Maybe, without calling it lowered expectations, it might be worthwhile to learn to appreciate a league championship without sneering? Maybe periods of success are only enjoyable in comparison to failure?

walrus
03-15-2011, 12:24 PM
I think it really depends on what you mean by "if you were a Maine fan". If what you mean is, if I were not myself, but were a Maine fan, with a recollection of Maine's past performances and expectations set accordingly, then I suppose it's possible I would not be satisfied, if I was convinced-- as some here are-- that all the other pieces are in place and that a head coach change only means a near-instant return to success.

However, if what you mean is that if I, with my own background and expectations, changed my loyalties tomorrow for some reason and began rooting for Maine-- I probably would be satisfied. Maine usually makes the playoffs. They get home ice more often than not. They've been to the NCAAs several times in the past decade. The coach's career winning percentage is respectable. So, yes, I'd have a hard time in that position saying that a guy that wins more often than he loses, competes for titles, needs to be replaced. I'd say that calls for replacing Whitehead are more justified than calls to replace Parker, but less justified than the calls to replace MacDonald and Army.

I for one don't take calling for the coaches head lightly, I realize that he is going nowhere for 3 years. On the other hand doing the same things over and over again expecting a different result is crazy. Something has to change. I assume you haven't seen Maine play that much in recent years, what did you think of Maines D in the games you have seen? They are so soft its pathetic, its been like that for 4 years. Guys that came in with a reputation of being tough,mean,physical have been turned into pussycats who poke check and turn the other cheek. I don't want Bigos but I want a Jeffy Libby or Brian White. Nemec should be those guys but he isn't, he'd get benched if tried to be those guys. Either the head coach needs to be changed or Assts need to changed, something needs to shake up the direction of this team, the status quo isn't working.

amherstblackbear
03-15-2011, 12:42 PM
What I find curious is that judging on the performance doesn't appear sufficient for some people-- that any positive aspects of anything during Whitehead's tenure are reassigned to Walsh, to Grant, or to the players themselves, while the negatives only are heaped on Whitehead. I suppose if the guy inspires no loyalty or admiration that's also part of the problem, but I'm just curious as to why that is.

Maine usually makes the playoffs. They get home ice more often than not. They've been to the NCAAs several times in the past decade. The coach's career winning percentage is respectable. So, yes, I'd have a hard time in that position saying that a guy that wins more often than he loses, competes for titles, needs to be replaced. I'd say that calls for replacing Whitehead are more justified than calls to replace Parker, but less justified than the calls to replace MacDonald and Army.


Who isn't going by performance? Four straight years (going on 7) of missing the NCAA tournament is unacceptable. It'll be unacceptable for the next guy, too.

Tom Izzo was interviewed on Mike & Mike (ESPN radio) this morning, and spoke about how you just can't understand how much it means to have leadership from your players. How much his teams have benefited from having a coach on the court. I think Whitehead would agree with that. There's no question that, early on, he benefited from on-ice leadership (guys like Metcalf). To say that Whitehead isn't solely responsible for his early success isn't stretching the truth. It's obvious.

Yes, he lost those players, and those assistants. It's his job to replace them. I'll grant that a large share of blame goes to the administration - it does seem as if Whitehead's support is more personal than institutional. Maybe he doesn't get as much to work with as he should. If so, why hasn't he pressed the issue? To the outside world, Whitehead seems averse to risk. He seems happier being complacent with mediocrity than putting his neck out to try to improve. That's not going to win a lot of fans.

sandiegoblkbr
03-15-2011, 01:38 PM
You are far too, rational for this crowd.

As opposed to you.......the ultimate apologist and irrational "fan".

sandiegoblkbr
03-15-2011, 01:43 PM
evidently, patenaude has selected the guy from southern illinois as the new pres...

http://new.bangordailynews.com/2011/03/14/news/bangor/system-chancellor-nominates-s-illinois-university-provost-for-um-president/

He's from SIU-Edwardsville.........not the larger, more well-known Southern Illinois that has an FCS football program, and has been a consistent NCAA basketball participant.

Runsub5
03-15-2011, 02:05 PM
I for one don't take calling for the coaches head lightly, I realize that he is going nowhere for 3 years. On the other hand doing the same things over and over again expecting a different result is crazy. Something has to change. I assume you haven't seen Maine play that much in recent years, what did you think of Maines D in the games you have seen? They are so soft its pathetic, its been like that for 4 years. Guys that came in with a reputation of being tough,mean,physical have been turned into pussycats who poke check and turn the other cheek. I don't want Bigos but I want a Jeffy Libby or Brian White. Nemec should be those guys but he isn't, he'd get benched if tried to be those guys. Either the head coach needs to be changed or Assts need to changed, something needs to shake up the direction of this team, the status quo isn't working.

The numbers don't totally agree with what you perceive to be the case. Merrimack leads the league in penalty minutes at 21.3/game. NU and Maine follow at 18.7 and 18.5 respectively. Granted, some of these minutes are a result of players not being disciplined and retaliating after the whistle. I'm not sure how you separate out these minutes. Diamond came to Maine with a reputation as a feisty hard nosed player and still plays that way. I don't see how Whitehead coached that out of him. He leads the team with 102 total penalty minutes. Banwell and House are next at around 50 and many others 20 - 30. It's fine to be physical, but a player also needs to play with discipline. It's counter productive to play physical and then spend time in the penalty box playing at a disadvantage. I thought it more difficult for Maine to play physical (and be effective at it) against a bigger team like Merrimack.

acs64
03-15-2011, 02:20 PM
The numbers don't totally agree with what you perceive to be the case. Merrimack leads the league in penalty minutes at 21.3/game. NU and Maine follow at 18.7 and 18.5 respectively. Granted, some of these minutes are a result of players not being disciplined and retaliating after the whistle. I'm not sure how you separate out these minutes. Diamond came to Maine with a reputation as a feisty hard nosed player and still plays that way. I don't see how Whitehead coached that out of him. He leads the team with 102 total penalty minutes. Banwell and House are next at around 50 and many others 20 - 30. It's fine to be physical, but a player also needs to play with discipline. It's counter productive to play physical and then spend time in the penalty box playing at a disadvantage. I thought it more difficult for Maine to play physical (and be effective at it) against a bigger team like Merrimack.

I think what Wally is really asking for is more physical defensemen....Bigger, stronger kids who can consistently take the body...or who can just annihilate a forward (cleanly) when needed. Some kids are big like Nemec but they'll never be physical players...which is the case with him....its just the way they've grown up playing the game and feel more comfortable with it. Other defensemen consistently take the body at this level because they're strong enough to do it, and its the way they've grown up learning how to play defense. Its a recruiting thing I think more than a teaching thing. White, for example, you could tell grew up pulverizing forwards as a way of life. He wuz just so dam good at it. Timmay has just gotten away from recruiting a few of these big fellas....but you gotta have at least one in the D corps if you ask me...a punisher....you cant have a whole team full of lightweight skaters. Doesnt work in my book. Just like its not good to have all midget forwards...gotta have a blend of speed, size, grittiness, good hands, and guts.

walrus
03-15-2011, 02:24 PM
Diamond came to Maine with a reputation as a feisty hard nosed player and still plays that way. I don't see how Whitehead coached that out of him. .
I'm talking about the D mostly, Joey is going to do what Joey does, just like Prestin Ryan did. You want those guys on your team, you have to accept thats the way they are. I also know there is a fine line between stupid and nice physical play. They aren't always going to be perfect. Campbell Blairs D knew the difference, they played physically, took penalties but also made nice plays. Maybe it was the caliber of the player??

One other thing, its also harder now to do what I want with the finishing the check rule. Sometimes its interference and sometimes they let it go. I got very frustrated seeing a puck leave a forward, a Maine D man hit him and Bunyon say, interference.

walrus
03-15-2011, 02:29 PM
Diamond came to Maine with a reputation as a feisty hard nosed player and still plays that way. I don't see how Whitehead coached that out of him. .
I'm talking about the D mostly, Joey is going to do what Joey does, just like Prestin Ryan did. You want those guys on your team, you have to accept thats the way they are. I also know there is a fine line between stupid and nice physical play. They aren't always going to be perfect. Campbell Blairs D knew the difference, they played physically, took penalties but also made nice plays. Maybe it was the caliber of the player??

rufus
03-15-2011, 02:56 PM
Absolutely daming statistic Larry digs up today: Maine, which wound up 17-12-7, finished 57th out of 58 Division I schools in save percentage at .884. Maine’s .889 save percentage over the last three seasons ranks 54th.


And after starting the season 6-1-3, they play .500 hockey the rest of the year, 11-11-4.

rufus
03-15-2011, 03:11 PM
Maine came out and scored two goals in three and a half minutes and then rolled over and died and didn't score again for the rest of the game (Timmay's system? Take an early lead and then try to protect)



"Don't overextend yourselves, and save your energy". Great advice from the head coach. Good that they weren't spent after giving up the five straight goals, that they still had something left in the tank.

KnowItAll
03-15-2011, 03:17 PM
Diamond came to Maine with a reputation as a feisty hard nosed player and still plays that way. I don't see how Whitehead coached that out of him. .

Timmy plays favorites and some are allowed to do pretty much whatever they want. Diamond and Tyler are goed examples.
Others get benched for going against Timmy's wishes... Hegarty and Duffy and DUFFY come to mind

KnowItAll
03-15-2011, 03:30 PM
--A 25 year old senior from Quebec who stayed close to home while wanting to fulfill his deceased FATHER'S dream of him playing college hockey and earning his degree (Leveille)


eee modzee, what choo thinking?

KnowItAll
03-15-2011, 03:34 PM
Why does everyone think Nyquist won't be the only early departure? I love Spencer Abbott, but besides a blistering shot, I don't see a ton of true pro potential. I actually think Flynn has the best chance of anyone who isn't Gus to take his game to the next level as I think he has the most well rounded game and the right approach, but I can't imagine he's leaving.

I think O'Neill wears the C, while Flynny and Abbott don the As, and short of one of the goalies jumping somewhere else (I think we've established how much of a 'shame' that would be), I think everyone else comes back.

ppphh Timmy always throws a few to the curb... sometimes he is forced to ask them back, but the night before the banquet he will call acouple into his office to say that the team would be better off without them next year.
I have a guess on two, but one is a good pk man, the other has nothing going on in D1
and there is one who I would like to see transfer so that he can get more playing time... tim will never use him to his potential