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PSU basketball is embarrassing, and it's time for DeChellis to go
December 22, 2010 - Cory Giger
The Penn State men's basketball program is an embarrassment.
Losing at home to Maine 74-64 Tuesday night is disgraceful.
Yes, to Maine, a team that came in with a 5-5 record and having lost:
* at Maryland by 30
* at Notre Dame by 25
* at NEC member Quinnipiac by eight
* at home to Brown by eight
* and at home to Delaware State by 19
OK, Maine had won three in a row over UMass, Norfolk State and Colgate, but still.
At home, no less.
To make matters worse, standout guard Talor Battle had to be taken for X-rays after the game because he hurt his hand on a late dunk.
If the Lions lose Battle, they may not win another game this season, which is down to Big Ten play.
Even with Battle, it's doubtful the Lions will win more than three or four games in league play.
This is a bad team and a bad program.
Ed DeChellis is a very nice man, and anyone who knows him would like to see him succeed.
But the time has come for DeChellis to go.
He has failed with this program. And no, an NIT title does nothing to change that opinion.
Believe me, this gives me no joy calling for DeChellis' ouster. He has been nothing but gracious and cooperative to me over the years.
But this isn't about being a nice guy. This is about winning basketball games.
DeChellis doesn't do that anywhere near enough.
He has one of the best players in the program's history in Battle, and he can't even build a supporting cast strong enough to get to one NCAA Tournament with him.
DeChellis is a cheap coach -- at $700,000 per year -- and with the prospect of having to pay more for a football coach if Joe Paterno retires, it's unlikely Penn State will fire him. DeChellis has three more years left on his contract, and the school does not want to eat that money.
This whole situation stinks.
The team loses most of its best players after this season: Battle, Jeff Brooks, David Jackson and Andrew Jones. The Lions could be a train wreck next season, so there's no better time for the program to start over with a new coach.
But it's clear Penn State has no desire to have a strong men's basketball program. School officials can talk all they want about that not being true, but they contradict themselves with their actions by keeping DeChellis.
As a college basketball fan, I would love to see Penn State build a good program that is fun to watch. As it stands, there is absolutely no reason to want to watch the Nittany Lions.