It was the worst kind of season for the Clemson basketball team. The program had NCAA Tournament aspirations and played at a fairly high level for most of the season, but a slew of close losses in ACC play relegated them to the NIT. Some Clemson fans believe that Brad Brownell’s team underachieved this year and more than a few of them are wondering aloud if the program should move in another direction. Clemson wasn’t a bad team; they weren’t a great team; they were just a good team. Sometimes those are the teams that get the most frustration from fans.
The frustration of so many close losses is understandable, but using that as justification to run off the coach seems a little overboard. The fact of the matter is the program is right on the cusp of the NCAA Tournament. They were competitive all season long in the most competitive basketball conference in America. It’s fine to put Brownell on a short leash going into next season, but he deserves to be back to coach a group that even without Jaron Blossomgame will have a lot of talent returning.
The other part is, who would Clemson hire? Gregg Marshall is the name everyone will throw out there and maybe he can be had, but it wouldn’t be as easy as just picking up the phone and telling him to pack his bags and come to Clemson. The more likely scenario would be going with another coach from a mid-major looking to move up and see how it turns out. Maybe it will work, maybe it won’t. Running Brownell off could destabilize a program that is on the cusp of making a return to the NCAA Tournament.
Brownell was asked about his job future today and he indicated he is comfortable with his status going forward. No discussions on his future will take place until the end of the season when he and Dan Radakovich sit down. For now the Tigers will focus on the NIT and a Tuesday night matchup with Oakland at Littlejohn Coliseum. The winner will face Alabama or Richmond in the next round.
Check out what Brownell had to say below.