- My day started with more buzz that Todd Lickliter could be on his way out at Iowa. No stretch to imagine since Lickliter has led Iowa to its three losingest seasons ever. However, it was all hearsay, since no connected sources were willing to go on the record. The sparks turned to flames when an Iowa City radio station, which I'm not familiar with, reported on its Facebook page that Lickliter would resign for health reasons. Iowa Sports Information Director Phil Haddy denied anything regarding the future of the basketball program had been decided, and called all internet stories "inaccurate". (Denials like this should always add the words "at this time".
- So what does all this mean? We don't know, but I think you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who watched Lickliter's post-game news conference who doesn't think there's something to it. Lickliter said it wasn't up to him whether he returns. He also made it a point to say he's "healthy". Barta had the chance to provide a vote of confidence and definitely passed. There's $2.5 million owed, so nothing is said without careful thought and consideration.
- A month ago, I was confident Lickliter would be back, but the past two weeks have been a disaster. He's lost the team. The body language is awful. The players lost by record margins at Wisconsin and Minnesota. If they could have had thought bubbles over their heads, they would have read, "Can we please get this season over." Even the quotes have been telling; a lot of honest emotion, especially from Matt Gatens, about how much losing just flat out sucks.
- We won't know until we know, but I think it's over. Do you know anyone who doesn't?
- Should it be over? Yes. In year three, Lickliter had his worst season (and Iowa its worst season ever). The fans don't like the style of play, and neither do the players. They say the right things to reporters, but privately, they want a change. Lickliter can coach, but not in the Big Ten.
- I really don't enjoy stories like this. It's such negative energy, and there are real people involved.
- Meantime in Ames, Iowa State has to sell a program that just lost its two best players while going 4 and 13 in the Big 12.
- It's a good time to be a UNI basketball fan.
Thursday, March 11, 2010
Lickliter Speculation Runs Wild
Posted by Keith Murphy at 11:53 PM