Dominant Personality

In his weekly recruiting column for Hawgs Illustrated, Dudley E. Dawson catches up with ESPN senior analyst Dave Telep for some insight on candidates being mentioned for the vacant Arkansas head basketball coaching job. This story is free and sponsored by the Arkansas Toyota Dealers. Click on the Arkansas Toyota banner.




As the former national scouting director for Scout.com and the current senior analyst for ESPN.com, Dave Telep comes into contact with every major head basketball coach in the country.

That gives him a unique perspective on many of the reported candidates for the vacant head basketball coaching job at Arkansas.

"You can win at Arkansas and you can win with many different styles," Telep said. "It's a great job for the right fit."

No matter whom the Razorbacks hire, Telep notes that guy needs to have one definite quality.

"You have got to hire a coach with a dominant personality," Telep said Thursday. "Arkansas has a passionate fan base, a great fan base that wants to be led. They are longing to be great again like they once were. They are longing to come back out in great numbers and they just need a reason.

"They are really looking for a leader, a guy who commands the room, who connects with that fan base," Telep added. "I think they will get one because there are a lot of great young coaches that are interested."

Telep has plenty of thoughts on most talked-about candidates:

Missouri's Mike Anderson: "I don't see why he wouldn't be the perfect choice. He's a coaching star, he's got that dominant personality, he's got the charisma, he was there during the glory days. If they want to pack the place, that's the guy.

"I know there are people saying Arkansas doesn't want to go back to the past. But Nolan Richardson is the past, Mike Anderson is the future."

Marquette's Buzz Williams: "A great coach, a dominant personality and is going to be a star and one of the best in profession whether it's at Marquette or somewhere else.

"He is one of the most relentless workers and recruiters that you can be around. In fact, he carries around a book during (the) July (recruiting period). People call it Buzz' Bible. It pretty much has everything in there – scouting reports, every bit of information you could ever want about a kid or the people around him, his travel plans.

"Basically he took what Billy Gillespie was doing and took it to a whole new level. He wants to be prepared for everything and never be caught off guard and he never is."

Texas A&M's Mark Turgeon: "He basically has taken what Billy Gillespie did there at Texas A&M and continue to build on it. He adapts to the talent that he has and seems to have great success in doing that. He is one of the rising stars out there in the profession."

Wichita State's Gregg Marshall: "The guy is just a flat out winner, has been wherever he has been and will be wherever he goes. He will fight like crazy for his team and his fans. Winning follows guys like him because he does the right things and gets results. He just gets it done."

Kansas State's Frank Martin: "Nobody in the country does a better job at taking kids with chips on their shoulder and getting them to play to the best of their ability. Obviously he is very intense and gets the best out of his players and is going to continue to do that because he demands it."

VCU's Shaka Smart: "Yes, he is young (33), but age is just a number. When he took over at VCU, he made a plan and a mission statement on how he was going to do things and he has stuck to that. His players love him, his fans love him and he is going to be one of the nation's best coaches when it is all said and done. I can't say enough good things about him."

Xavier's Chris Mack: "He was one of the nation's best recruiters when he was an assistant and has kept that going as a head coach. He is a great coach and I have no doubt he is going to be called one of the best in the country very soon."

Cincinnati's Mick Cronin: "I think he is a guy that isn't getting enough credit for the job he has done there. He's a hard worker and is having success and doing it because of his hard work."




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