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UNT cites fall success as sign Baker is delivering on promise to elevate programs


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Wren Baker vowed better times were on the way when he took over as North Texas' athletic director in summer 2016.

Those times certainly appeared to arrive during the fall sports season that will go down as one of the best in program history. Those few months kicked off Baker's second year at the school.

The UNT football team won the Conference USA West Division title and played in the New Orleans Bowl. And that was only one milestone school officials see as an indication of how far the program has come in a short time.

UNT won the C-USA tournament in women's soccer and the regular season title in volleyball. The school also broke ground on a new facility for its soccer and track programs.

"I am proud of our student-athletes, coaches and staff," Baker said. "This fall was certainly one to celebrate and be proud of. I'm also grateful for our alumni and fans, as well as the community, for supporting and embracing our student-athletes. Together, we are building a program that excels academically and athletically."

read more: 

http://www.dentonrc.com/sports/mean-green/2018/01/16/unt-cites-fall-success-sign-baker-delivering-promise-elevate-programs

 

 

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3 hours ago, Harry said:

Wren Baker vowed better times were on the way when he took over as North Texas' athletic director in summer 2016.

Those times certainly appeared to arrive during the fall sports season that will go down as one of the best in program history. Those few months kicked off Baker's second year at the school.

The UNT football team won the Conference USA West Division title and played in the New Orleans Bowl. And that was only one milestone school officials see as an indication of how far the program has come in a short time.

UNT won the C-USA tournament in women's soccer and the regular season title in volleyball. The school also broke ground on a new facility for its soccer and track programs.

"I am proud of our student-athletes, coaches and staff," Baker said. "This fall was certainly one to celebrate and be proud of. I'm also grateful for our alumni and fans, as well as the community, for supporting and embracing our student-athletes. Together, we are building a program that excels academically and athletically."

read more: 

http://www.dentonrc.com/sports/mean-green/2018/01/16/unt-cites-fall-success-sign-baker-delivering-promise-elevate-programs

 

 

Congrats to all! GMG 

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Now comes the hard part. Gotta be consistent. If Baker can show consistency in winning for a few years across multiple programs, he'll be snatched up by a P5 in a hurry. The hope is that he doesn't leave the cupboard bare when he goes.

I think we're in good hands for at least a few more years with Baker. He's a good one.

 

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No one can deny the progress that the athletic department has made under Baker.  Baker has been very good for NT, but he would not be successful without a supportive Administration.   

So I would add that the President and the BOR are also very responsible for this athletic turnaround.   Also thanks to the big donors that keep the program rolling in the right direction.   

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7 minutes ago, greenminer said:

Fun hypothetical: if The Wren fires Benford immediately, do we never get McCasland?

Probably not, but I gotta think Baker's basketball coaching connections are very wide (himself being an Eddie Sutton disciple), and he could have found another guy that would be a good coach as well.  Who knows the real reasons why he kept Benford (the fake reason of poor team morale was a joke).  Probably money-related.

We like McCasland because of what he's done here, and because he's ours, but I doubt he's the only guy that could turn around this team.

It was a tough season to endure (very obvious lame duck year), and McCasland appears to be the real deal, so water under the bridge now, I suppose.

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The biggest improvement any team or organization makes is going from awful to average. WB and Company has more than done this. And he should be commended for doing something in 2 years that the previous AD wasn’t close to achieving. 

But the next steps of becoming  consistently good will be the deciding part of WB being an AD at a place higher up the food chain than being here. He has shown that the job isn’t too big for him. I suspect he will turn this into a hefty raise somewhere else in the years ahead.

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6 hours ago, greenminer said:

Fun hypothetical: if The Wren fires Benford immediately, do we never get McCasland?

Short answer is no, not McCasland. And, while I'm sure there are more people than just McCasland who could have improved on Bedford, I'm not sure the person we could have found on short notice in the middle of the summer would have been as good as those available waiting as we did. 

I have no actual knowledge the following happen, but based on the fact Wren is competent at his job. He can't formally offer anyone a job before Bedford is actually terminated as that's a violation of multiple laws. He could talk to agents to find out whom might be theoretically interested in a future job as long as there are a LOT of disclaimers. I suspect Wren did this and didn't find anyone he wanted to commit to being our next basketball coach at the time he took over. Yes, he could have improved on Bedford but probably not by enough to commit to that person when the best coaches are available right at the end of the season. I think Wren chose to wait knowing he would have a much stronger pool of candidate in March/April than in July/August. Again, I have no way of knowing this what he actually did, but I believe this is what happened. 

While I'm sure there are many in the fan base who would have preferred replacing the "F" coach Bedford with a "C" coach, I'm glad Wren chose to suffer through one more season to get an "A" or "A-" level coach

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8 minutes ago, VideoEagle said:

Short answer is no, not McCasland. And, while I'm sure there are more people than just McCasland who could have improved on Bedford, I'm not sure the person we could have found on short notice in the middle of the summer would have been as good as those available waiting as we did. 

I have no actual knowledge the following happen, but based on the fact Wren is competent at his job. He can't formally offer anyone a job before Bedford is actually terminated as that's a violation of multiple laws. He could talk to agents to find out whom might be theoretically interested in a future job as long as there are a LOT of disclaimers. I suspect Wren did this and didn't find anyone he wanted to commit to being our next basketball coach at the time he took over. Yes, he could have improved on Bedford but probably not by enough to commit to that person when the best coaches are available right at the end of the season. I think Wren chose to wait knowing he would have a much stronger pool of candidate in March/April than in July/August. Again, I have no way of knowing this what he actually did, but I believe this is what happened. 

While I'm sure there are many in the fan base who would have preferred replacing the "F" coach Bedford with a "C" coach, I'm glad Wren chose to suffer through one more season to get an "A" or "A-" level coach

Benford....Bedford is a city over that way.....Benford was the bad coach

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