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Arizona State Football Coaching Search Has Been an Embarrassment

TEMPE, AZ - NOVEMBER 19:  Head coach Dennis Erickson of the Arizona State Sun Devils before the college football game against the Arizona Wildcats at Sun Devil Stadium on November 19, 2011 in Tempe, Arizona.   The Wildcats defeated the Sun Devils 31-27.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Christian Petersen/Getty Images
Chris GreenCorrespondent IIIDecember 9, 2011

Arizona State has fallen from a once respectable job in college football to a national joke. With the events that have transpired over the past three weeks, one would think Jeff Spicoli is running the athletic department for the Sun Devils.

Aloha, Dr. Crow!

The season for Arizona State football began with promise. There was hope that the Sun Devils would be representing the Pac-12 South in the conference’s inaugural championship game.

Dreaming is free, right?

Those hopes quickly faded when the Sun Devils failed to win a game in the month of November and finished the season with four very disappointing losses.

The 2011 debacle continued as the athletic department delayed firing head coach Dennis Erickson. They watched as recently vacated Pac-12 coaching positions at Washington State and Arizona were filled with big-name coaches.

Arizona State was then turned down by its first choice, Kevin Sumlin, who opted to stay at the University of Houston rather than coach the Sun Devils.

They watched Larry Fedora, another name that had been floated around, sign at the University of North Carolina. Apparently there was more appeal at a school where basketball is king and football is merely an afterthought than there is at Arizona State.

The embarrassment came to a crescendo on Wednesday when Arizona State reportedly offered the head coaching job to June Jones, a man whose résumé strongly resembles that of recently dismissed Dennis Erickson, but then pulled its offer.

Arizona State was running around like a guy who didn’t have a date for the prom and having been turned down by the cheerleaders went straight to the band room to ask a flutist to the dance.

As bad as it would have been if Jones was actually hired, it is almost worse to offer a job and then pull it. It removes any credibility from the university and sends a negative message to future candidates.

Arizona State will now be lucky to convince the offensive coordinator of Scottsdale Community College to take its head coaching job. It has shown that the athletic department is rife with incompetence and that it cannot be taken at its word.

Brace yourselves, ASU fans: Whoever the head coach ends up being, it's sure to be a bumpy ride.

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