Tuesday, March 04, 2008

The Strange, Focused Curse of Ritchie McKay

If you peruse the current men's college basketball standings, you'll find that there's only three teams - three out of well more than 300 - that are completely winless in their conference.

They are: Rice, in Conference USA; Oregon State, in the Pac 10; and Colorado State, in the Mountain West.

One baseball school in Texas. One former powerhouse in the Northwest. And one non-anything school on the front range of the Rocky Mountains. On the surface they don't have much in common, but if you delve deeper you find out that two of them - Oregon State and Colorado State - were once coached by the same man: Ritchie McKay, current coach at Liberty.

There is nothing that needs to be written that hasn't been written before. In fact, two of McKay's other former programs - Portland State and New Mexico - are doing quite well. Portland State leads the Big Sky Conference (20-9, 13-2), and New Mexico is third in the MWC (22-7, 9-5).

So why OSU and CSU? It may be because a player named Ron Grady transferred from Oregon State to Colorado State to play for McKay, only to learn after a year that his coach was leaving to head up the program he had just left behind.

Or maybe it's because both of them are terrible programs that are headed in the wrong direction.

If you picked three teams out of all the programs in Div. I-A out of a hat, though, it'd probably be a long damn time before you found two that had been coached by the same person.

That's how it works, however. Some programs make the right decisions and move along, and some just take the hit.

Speaking of which, if you take "hit" out of "Ritchie," you get "Rice." Coincidence?


Garth Tingey said...

I really don't think that Ron Grady has anything to do with OSU or CSU's troubles this year as he hasn't played college ball in almost 10 years.

However J.S. Nash, himself a former McKay player, described Richie thusly:
"He is just an angry little man"

Hercules Rockefeller said...

Sheesh...even Northern Co. has a few conference wins.