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PITINO PLUG: CBS Sports Correctly Implies Georgetown and Pitino Would be a Great Match

Matt Norlander speaks with Rick Pitino about his future

COLLEGE BASKETBALL: NOV 18 Hall Of Fame Showcase - Iona vs Vermont Photo by Erica Denhoff/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

There has been one incredible streak that have Georgetown Hoyas fans very excited. In case you haven’t been following on Twitter, Casual Hoya has tweeted out the name “Rick Pitino” on a daily basis. Many Hoyas fans feel that since the NCAA Independent Review Panel cleared his name, Pitino and Georgetown could be a match made in heaven—if and when the head coaching position opens up.

Today, Matt Norlander posted a CBS Sports article after spending time talking with the Hall of Fame coach of the Iona Gaels. The subject: updates on Pitino’s future ahead of what’s sure to be an interesting coaching carousel in March. Georgetown gets a mention as a possibility.

In a CBS Sports article that you absolutely have to read every word of, Norlander specifically notes that “Big jobs are expected to open” and “Georgetown is a prime candidate; if ever that program needed an injection of coaching credibility, Pitino’s more qualified than any candidate, and he knows it.” Seems almost too simple.

Rick Pitino certainly has a past, but he’s an incredible basketball mind who has re-embraced the key aspects of teaching and developing student-athletes during his time at Iona. While Pitino makes no apologies in the article, Norlander’s piece certainly illustrates a very different Pitino—a reflective, methodical old coach who wants to give it one more go on the big stage.

Pitino’s connections to the BIG EAST and Georgetown are well documented, and some folks are reading Norlander’s article as an open invitation for Georgetown to reach out. The administration and prospective search committee would be fools if they were to not to have a discussion with him.

Here are 10 great quotes from Norlander’s piece:

  1. “I’ve been doing this for 45 years ... and I’m more excited about doing it now than I was even when I was 40, because I know it’s not going to go on forever.”
  2. “I want to coach five or six more years ... I still exercise like a demon. I still get after it. And as long as you do that [and] your mind is sharp.”
  3. “I want to do something special, whether it’s at Iona or it doesn’t matter. I want to do something special, and I think we are doing something special.”
  4. “It would have to be someplace really, really special with the type of president that I have here ... Now, it’s easy. I got exonerated by the NCAA, they said you didn’t do anything, now it’s easy to hire me. But [Iona AD] Seamus Carey didn’t have that guarantee.”
  5. “[Pitino] still gets to the gym before 8 a.m. most days and does individual workouts with his bigs, then the wings, then the guards.”
  6. “Minimal commute time has been huge for [Pintino’s] productivity, which includes near-weekly fundraising. Nearly $2 million has been raised to overhaul Iona’s athletic facilities and offices ... with $400,000-$500,000 coming from friends in Kentucky.”
  7. “I was offered three really good jobs last year ... But I told the one job, it was a big-time job, I said, ‘Look, I’ve got a $5 million buyout. I had $10 million prior to that. I’m not worth that.’”
  8. “In the offseason, Pitino went to [AD Seamus] Carey and had his buyout taken down to $0, making him easier to pluck.”
  9. “I have no idea what the answer is about where I’ll be or what I’ll do,” Pitino said. “I know I love the place. I know I’m eight minutes away. I know I love Winged Foot … I do know that there’s certain places and there’s 20 or 30 states where I don’t want to live.”
  10. “Many of those states are covered by Big Ten country, a conference Pitino said he’d never work in after his son, Richard, was fired by one of the league’s schools (Minnesota). With no eagerness to leave New Rochelle, Pitino will be picky if schools come calling.”