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Defining Greatness Again


Harry
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Great - "Important; highly significant or consequential"

-- Dictionary.com

A couple of people have asked again about the greatness of Darrell Dickey. I went through my argument for the great DD before and since some people asked about it again - here it is.

Again.

This is the MGB. We don't deal in pie-in-the-sky dreams or what people think UNT's football program should be.

We present it as it is.

Click here for the rest of this article

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What kind of relationship did DD and Vito have ?

good sense of humor, but the bottom line is that compared to most of the mistakes we've had here as coach, Dickey was a real winner. He, along with Mitchell, Rust (for a while), Corkey Nelson (when he was on) and Fry are the only ones who really helped the program by their presence here.

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His assistant coaches were being hired away "left and right"......but not Dickey. If he was a giant, he would have been hired away from North Texas....like Jerry Moore....who had an 11-11 record here.

If someone had hired Ramone Flanigan then Vito might be able to make this argument.

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Dickey was a very good coach who did a lot with limited resources. Comparing him to Mitchell's era is illogical.

With all due respect, and I know this will make some of you very mad, DD had a good team at the right time in a bad conference. The Belt got better, UNT did not progress along with it like we could have.

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With all due respect, and I know this will make some of you very mad, DD had a good team at the right time in a bad conference. The Belt got better, UNT did not progress along with it like we could have.

No Dickey won 4 CONSECUTIVE conference championships and that is a major accomplishment at any level. You can knock the conference all you want, but when you coach a football team your goal is to win the conference. You are correct the Belt got better and Dickey was unable to continue winning it and that was ultimately one of the reasons he was fired. And yes maybe luck played into the fact that DD was so successful. You have to remember that DD did all this with bottom of the barrel assistant salaries and piss poor facilities. Thank goodness that has changed now. And yes he had his issues his shortcomings as do we all. Please don't try to detract from what the guy accomplished when he was here.

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I guess for UNT he was a great coach, but when you look at the whole picture (OOC record and bowl performance) I think it really just shows how bad UNT football has been over the years and how bad the Sun Belt was in the early 2000's.

If you look at OOC and bowl performance, it's a lot better than anything we've accomplished since and some time before Dickey happened.

Back to back national rushing champions. Top 10 ranked defenses. I don't know if you were around in the early 2000s, but there was some serious coaching and talent going on there.

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Using Vito's definition, I don't think we can call Dickey's tenure great. The run was good for us while it lasted; however, I don't think we can call it "highly important" or consequential. I say this because the run did not leave the program better off. Most of the posters believe Dickey left the program in tatters. Obviously, Dodge did not pull it up. It was more like a blip that happened to occur while Dickey was coach. Someone mentioned Rust for a while. Rust was great when he had Mitchell's recruits, but he was not able to sustain. Greatness requires one to sustain. With the successful run Dickey had, he did not sustain.

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If you look at OOC and bowl performance, it's a lot better than anything we've accomplished since and some time before Dickey happened.

Back to back national rushing champions. Top 10 ranked defenses. I don't know if you were around in the early 2000s, but there was some serious coaching and talent going on there.

I don't think I'm alone when I say that Darrell Dickey and the early 2000 football teams are the reason for getting me interested in any UNT sport.

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I don't think I'm alone when I say that Darrell Dickey and the early 2000 football teams are the reason for getting me interested in any UNT sport.

Me too. With the exception of one home game against Houston I went to in the late-90s, I unfortunately hadn't given UNT much of a thought since I'd graduated. Noticing in the TV guide that UNT was playing Colorado State in a bowl game was the turning point for my fandom, personally.

Edited by UNT 90 Grad
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I don't think we can call it "highly important" or consequential. I say this because the run did not leave the program better off.

What of Matress Mac?

There were some rough waters flowing between UNT and Matress Mac, but I would not dismiss Dickey's relationship with him and the money that followed as not important or inconsequential.

MeanMag, you're not alone. (Watching Chris Davis play didn't hurt, either)

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What of Matress Mac?

There were some rough waters flowing between UNT and Matress Mac, but I would not dismiss Dickey's relationship with him and the money that followed as not important or inconsequential.

MeanMag, you're not alone. (Watching Chris Davis play didn't hurt, either)

For those of you who are like me and are a little in the dark about the Mattress Mac situation...here is a good article that summarizes the situation

Mattress Mac

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I don't think I'm alone when I say that Darrell Dickey and the early 2000 football teams are the reason for getting me interested in any UNT sport.

This is what most people that bag on DD don't give him credit for...his run brought many, many fans to the program that are still fans today.

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Using Vito's definition, I don't think we can call Dickey's tenure great. The run was good for us while it lasted; however, I don't think we can call it "highly important" or consequential. I say this because the run did not leave the program better off. Most of the posters believe Dickey left the program in tatters. Obviously, Dodge did not pull it up. It was more like a blip that happened to occur while Dickey was coach. Someone mentioned Rust for a while. Rust was great when he had Mitchell's recruits, but he was not able to sustain. Greatness requires one to sustain. With the successful run Dickey had, he did not sustain.

The academic side of the football program was in a bad way when DD left. You have to give Dodge credit for leaving the program in much better shape in that area when he left.

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Great? I don't think so.

DD did some real nice things. The 4 year run through conference was amazing. We had some nice pub and CUSA was sniffing around when they were looking to expand. That was the great stuff he accomplished.

Now for the bad and really ugly. Even during the great dominating defensive years, the offense was capable against Sun Belt/Big West opponents but absolutely horrendous against better competition. Yes, we won a few non conference games against AQ teams that were having bad/mediocre seasons but we just couldn't move the ball on offense against a decent team. I remember a few of us Mean Green fans cheering in Norman when the Mean Green finally amassed 100 yards of total offense in the fourth quarter. In DD's second season, the offense averaged just over 10 points a game - think about that for a minute. The point is the fan base was subjected to really bad, really boring football for many years and attendance reflected that. I think a major reason attendance actually went up during the Dodge fiasco was even if we lost, it was at least entertaining.

The recruiting absolutely, positively fell off sharply. I'll give all the credit in the world to DD for what he accomplished with what he had to work with during those 4 great years. But in the end, he turned the Mean Green into a Sun Belt cellar dweller. We never made the strides as a fb program that we were as an athletic department. We never took it to the next level and regressed quite a bit.

It was all a flash in the pan. But man, that was one great run.

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This is what most people that bag on DD don't give him credit for...his run brought many, many fans to the program that are still fans today.

Agreed. DD's teams are what got myself and about 5 of my close friends interested in NT football (and subsequently UNT's athletics program in general). All of us are now MGC members and multi-sport season ticket holders. Have been since graduating in the mid-2000's.

Not saying that everything during that time period was great (didn't particularly care for the way things ended here), but it was at least enough to get us fence riders invloved in the program, and the New Orleans Bowl appearences gave us our first taste of the big time college athletics feel. It was instrumental in showing me that great things could be accomplished here.

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DD did not leave this program in shambles, academically or talent wise. For every bad apple there were countless individuals getting it done in the classroom and graduating.

He left us a QB in Danny Meager who was talented enough to make an amazing transition of a mostly run first offense to a passing one, and did it well enough to set a school passing record against SMU in Dodges' first year. He also left us with a national rushing champion running back in Jamario Thomas. Defensively Jeremiah Chapman ended his final season second in all the nation in tackles for defensive ends.

Regardless of DD's shortcomings, poor decisions with his staff and public gaffes later on in his carreer, he is and always will be an important figure in North Texas football history. And for that I greatly respect him and expect that he will be in the NT Hall Of Fame someday.

Rick

Edited by FirefightnRick
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