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Let’s hear your sales pitch for the head coaching job

Over the next few weeks, you’re going to hear a lot of names as potential new head coaches. Mitch Barnhart will be burning up the phone lines, putting out feelers to some big names, many of which will likely turn him down. But, if you were Mitch Barnhart, how would you sell the UK coaching job?

Right now, Kentucky is one of the least desirable jobs in the toughest conference in the country. Three other SEC schools (Tennessee, Arkansas, Auburn) will likely be searching for head coaches in the coming months. The program is at its lowest point in recent memory. With this hire, Mitch has the opportunity to show the school’s commitment to the football team and its future. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of the job, and how Mitch could present it to potential prospects:

— We’re in the SEC. Everyone wants to coach in the SEC?
— In his open letter to the Big Blue Nation, Mitch was hopeful about the program’s chances at getting funding from the Legislature, the University President and Board of Trustees:

We have invested in football specifically and have high hopes there will be the opportunity to do major work in our stadium with some financing opportunities in the very near future.

If Mitch can guarantee funding, this will be a pro, not a con.
— Mitch has said that money is not an issue, and he is prepared to make the next coach the highest paid coach in the country
— The fan base has shown that they will support a successful team (just ask the hotels and bars in Nashville)
— Not a ton of pressure to win big. The majority of Kentucky fans just want to go to games, have fun, and make it to a respectable bowl game.
— Decent young talent to work with already

— We’re in the SEC. It ain’t easy to win in the SEC.
— As of now, facilities are in need of major improvement. Again, this will be a non-issue if Mitch can guarantee funding.
— Lack of in-state talent in recruiting.

What else would you include in your sales pitch?

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

65 Comments for Let’s hear your sales pitch for the head coaching job

  1. Bg Cat
    11:03 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    There’s nowhere to go but up. Three other schools are hiring, so UK could be better than them by improving just alittle, tickets to see Matthew Mitchell’s latest dance moves at big blue madness.

  2. bigcat76
    11:09 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    You might be able to become friends with Cal
    You might get some of that salad

    Your every move will be scrutinized on by a bunch of hacks, Cutler, Tipton, KSR.

  3. Matt in Franklin
    11:13 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Sean Payton can’t coach in pros or be contacted till seasons end…call him up UK and make an offer! It’ll never happen, but what if?

  4. emlang08
    11:14 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Is Butch Davis being tossed around?

  5. RobertinTN
    11:14 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    You build us a good program and we pay you a whole lot of money.

  6. PutThatOnDeAndrewLiggins
    11:16 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    We just got embarrassed by Vandy.

    effing Vandy.

    Think about it…

  7. OwensboroDavid
    11:17 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Send Howard Schnellenberger to Petrino’s house and we’ll be a winning program. That’s the only sales pitch we need.

  8. BigBlueDiehard
    11:19 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    The job includes great seats to the basketball games.

  9. SteveM
    11:21 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    If I were Mitch Barnhart, I would advise prospective coaches that I would be resigning so as not to be a further impediment to the success of the UK football program.

  10. bluebabyblue
    11:22 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    PLEASE Mitch, do NOT talk to Bobby Petrino. We don’t need that kind of image at UK. We may THINK we’re desperate, but we don’t need to sell our souls to the devil. Quickest way for you to get fired would be for you to hire Petrino. You don’t need another ‘Billy Clyde’ on your resume.

  11. KDPearson
    11:28 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Sales pitch…No other coach in the nation would be up to the challenge except YOU! (Regardless of who he is talking to)

  12. Dr. Kutaweigh
    11:29 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Kentucky has never beaten Vanderbilt in football by 40 points. The most embarrassing loss ever in the history of UK football, the second most embarrassing loss, Western Kentucky University. The two most embarrassing losses in UK football history…both in the same year. Joker is probably a great guy, but that sure didin’t make him a football coach.

  13. Riggo
    11:29 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Listen…….we will pay you over a million dollars to win half…..only half…. the games on the schedule. All you have to do is act like you’re excited to be here.

  14. kybigblue
    11:29 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Pro UK since stadium expansion has often been in the top 25 in football attendance.
    Near Keeneland

    Con Not as much football tradition as many other SEC schools.

  15. CardFan
    11:33 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    I think UK should go after Alabama’s Defensive Coordinator Kirby Smart. Would be along the lines of the Cardinals hiring Charlie Strong. Coach Smart has strong ties to SEC recruiting grounds and has been a coach on a proven winner. If he isn’t available, try for someone with ties to the NFL or SEC. Petrino will win but he comes with a ton of baggage, that is on Cats fans to decide if they can overlook it. Good luck either way, looking forward to UK putting a competitive football team back on the field. Go Cards!

  16. JT
    11:35 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Front row season tickets to all UK basketball games plus a 500 acre horse farm on Versailles Road. To sweeten the deal, seat beside Cal at Wheeler’s Pharmaacy.

  17. Young Buck
    11:36 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Kentucky has heavy presence with the sec in two major sports basketball and baseball(4 teemas uk hoops and softball included).
    While also competing inTennis, rifle, cheer leading ect
    UK is climbing in athletics, The name Kentucky has the national Recognition, a growing city And a Progressive university, to provide and work with an incoming coach.

    A hirer here could easy flip kentucky’s football future and could utlmently rewrite Kentucky football for ever. Mich needs to hit the head on the nail with this one. With the media level in lexington at an all time high, He is in the prostitsion to feather kentucky’s athletic presence in the sec and amoung the national level.

  18. Han
    11:38 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    For me, you have to at least reach out through back channels to the HUGE names, the guys who are former NFL coaches (Gruden, Billick, Mangini, Cohwer) or soon-to-be former NFL coaches (Ryan, Payton, Lewis? Reid? Shanahan?), the disgraced college coaches (Tressel and Petrino), or the top assistants. Yeah, you probably get laughed at, but you have to pitch the potential of the program, not its reality. This program has not had a legend since we lost Bear. We get one of these guys, they can be a legend in a way they wouldn’t be at another school, or even at an NFL team.

    You pitch UK’s national profile as a basketball team and the idea of standing next to Cal and making UK the next big thing in the best football conference. You pitch having to recruit hard, and having a couple tough years, but then being coach of the year when you succeed. You pay them as much as anyone else save maybe Saban. And you promise whatever upgrades to facilities it takes. People say UK fans don’t care about football. That’s just because UK’s program never gives us a reason to care about the program. You get Cal to tell them exactly how rabid our fanbase can be (and you can even show some numbers on how we traveled to bowl games).

    Spurrier has made USC Jr. into a contender. Do him one better and make UK a contender.

  19. Young Buck
    11:40 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Bobby would be the worst hire possible. Like cal says its all about mama and mama wants to know if your going to take care of her baby? You think mama is going to trust bobby?

  20. Bristol Cat
    11:48 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Sales pitch:

    Win 8 games here and you’ll be in line for the Alabama job when Saban leaves.

  21. WastedElectricity
    11:51 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    I ain’t coming to that goat path known as CommonWealth…I have a reputation to maintain!

  22. JLivermore
    11:51 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    We have the easiest non-conference schedule in the history of mankind, and if you win 3 of them every year, you are good. If you win all 4, you are a god.

  23. Southbound
    11:51 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    UK – “So I hear you’re pretty good! Prove it, make Kentucky a contender!”
    Candidate – “Can I bring in Celeb Rappers Like Cal?”
    UK – “Sure…. If you’re winning!”

    Wish List of Coaches (May seem odd choice to some)
    1. Art Briles ~ Exciting brand of football, has a knack of finding talent, very good at developing talent, has proven he can put players into the NFL.

    2. Jay Gruden ~ Seems to be very good with QBs and making the most out of the pieces he has available.

    Just my 2 cents.

  24. Mitch Barnhart
    11:51 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    “We can’t hide you here at Kentucky. If you can’t coach, everyone watching ESPNU for the 12 o’clock game will see it. People don’t come here because it’s easy, clearly. People come to coach the Commonwealth’s football team because it is hard. You will put in a lot of hard work, and sometimes the fans will be critical, but you just have to keep working. We could have offered any coach in the country, but we are offering you. Also, you aren’t going to be the big man on campus. If you want to have all the attention and can’t share the spotlight, then UK isn’t for you. We are going to have other coaches here that are also pretty dang good. You have to learn shared sacrifice for the good of the athletics program. Now, I am saying all of this because I want you to know what you are getting in to. We want you here, and we think that you can be a major piece in the championship puzzle for our football team. And finally, we are extending an offer of 7 million dollars per year for 7 years. You can have your lawyers read this contract over. You are definitely going to have to actually sign this contract before you can start work. Go ahead and talk about this with your family, call me if you have any questions or concerns, and fax it in to my office at your convenience next week.”

  25. me
    11:53 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    I’m with 20.. make something happen here, say win the SEC East and you are looking at a COY. This could be a springboard for someone IF they could make something happen.

  26. BobbyPsNeckBrace
    11:54 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Not about to enter into a contract with a program that sends its ex coaches to an eternal grave yard.
    Get over yourselves…You’re UK, not a REAL $EC Football school.Besides,doormats don’t get any respect from anyone.

  27. Pitch, lol, what pitch?
    11:59 am November 5, 2012 Permalink

    The only pitch UK has is “come give it a try. Yes, we know no UK fb coach in the last bazillion years has had a winning record. But look at the bright side: You will more than likely fail, but you can walk away with $3 million or so when we open the revolving door in 3 years and hire the next lunatic willing to come to the graveyard of fb coaches”.

    So find a John L. Smith that is bankrupt or in major debt and appeal to his wallet. He won’t succeed, of course, but the position will get filled and we can sweep this all under the rug and get back to basketball.

  28. wes
    12:04 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    just saw the report of the joker firing. The reporter’s name was Edward Aschoff! Now, there’s a name you could have fun with…”Thanks Edward, he reallly worked his ashcoff for that story.” “Now, we’re live on the sidelines. Edward, it’s a cold one today. Looks like you’re freezing your aschoff.”

  29. Joker Blows
    12:05 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Your PRO’s are cons!!
    “Not a ton of pressure to win big. The majority of Kentucky fans just want to go to games, have fun, and make it to a respectable bowl game”
    Real football coaches want a school that WANTS to WIN not just be respectable….”respectable” is what loser fans want.

  30. WalkersGoggles
    12:06 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    PROS—you get courtside tickets to probably one of the greatest upcoming UK basketball seasons ever.

    CONS—good luck getting the big money donors giving to basketball to give to you

  31. Bob Loblaw
    12:08 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    29 I agree, KSR acts like you are stupid if you want a winning team.

  32. wes
    12:09 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    btw…Pros- UK has a ton of young talent with game experience to help the transition to new recruits.

    12:17 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    – following a losing coach and a program in decline; when you are following up a coach who won 1-2 games in the prior season, you have nowhere to go but up. Its a lot easier to follow-up a coach like Joker than a coach like Rich Brooks. Personally, I think its much easier to get UK back to being a bowl team than it is to go from a 6-7 win team to an 8-9 win team.

    I don’t envy the coach who has to follow CAL.

  34. Dano
    12:20 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Beat the teams you are supposed to beat, pull off a few upsets, go bowling somewhere south around New Years and 70,000 fans a week will call you a god. We have plenty of talent. BUT the JOKE got rid of all the position coaches who had a clue what they were doing. You can’t do any worse.

    12:21 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    #32 MOST of whom will transfer before next season….

  36. bofkentucky
    12:22 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Fertile recruiting grounds just 80 miles north in Cincinnati/Ohio. OSU is leaving better talent behind in that market while Urban mines his old territory down in FL.

  37. bluebloodtoo
    12:25 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    selling point – WIN. If you win, you will get the largest and most passionate fan base in all of sports behind you. BBN is mostly focused on basketball, but we like winners. Give us a winning football team and you will overtake the notre dames and USC’s of the football world.

  38. phillip
    12:25 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    You will get to attend as many UK Basketball games as you want, for Free!!!

  39. bigbluejon
    12:27 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    You would not include “cons” in a coach interview.

    12:29 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    34 – Agree. Joker replaced coaches who couldn’t recruit with recruiters who couldn’t coach. It sounded OK in theory when they were hired. However, the problem is we still couldn’t recruit. Therefore, we had bad coaches and recruiters instead of just bad recruiters.

  41. Mitch
    12:30 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    We had 2 guys drafted 1-2. One took the fifth most shots and the other took 4th most shots. Oh wait…what are we talking about? Football? You are a football coach? Ok great! The job is yours.

  42. Maxps8
    12:30 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    #1. We have THE most prominent and inter/nationally recognized basketball program bar none. This provides you, as the HC of UK, access to people and places few have. (And maybe CoachCal will allow the use of the private jet for crucial recruiting trips; to be coordinated around CoachCal’s schedule, of course). This means during the ‘off-season’ the KentuckY ‘brand’ will be all over the airwaves providing you ample opportunities to get out, get interviewed, and build the UK Football brand. The KentuckY Effect.

    #2. You are the most northern team in the SEC, closest to Ohio, PA, NY, MI, and several other great recruiting areas (this is one of specific reasons why Jim Tressel is THE perfect person for the job). This means recruits can play in the SEC but their family can also come visit and watch more often. And they are closer to home for the off-season trips home to do laundry.

    #3. You will be following in the footsteps of Bear Bryant and forever loved by the BBN which is huge and global.

  43. East Kentucky Infidel
    12:31 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Pros – Cal

    Cons – MiTch

    Give the keys to Cal, let him go find us a coach and staff wanting to come to the greatest untapped sports opportunity in the nation.

    Tell Mitch to go run the non revenue sports. Cal’s got the rest.

    Two weeks tops and Kentucky Football is on the map.
    Three years tops and UK is a contender in the SEC!

    Mitch has had eleven years and he’s still chasing his tail.

    Cal in two weeks can do what Mitch will never accomplish.

    12:42 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    36 – GREAT POINT!!! If you get the best OSU leftovers in Ohio each year and establish that base as the choice program of kids who aren’t recruited by OSU than it could go a long way at making us relevant in football.

  45. Han
    12:48 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    35) We land a huge name, especially an offensive coach, and we won’t lose any of our top talent.

    42) I really hope Tressel is in the top tier of our offers. There’s a ton of baggage, both compliance and PR, but we should be used to that since Cal came. And yeah, odds are he just uses us to get a better job when his Show Cause ends, but I can live with that. And while many people think basketball would overshadow the football program, we just need someone who can use it, who can bring recruits to Rupp and say, “Help me get Commonwealth rocking like this. You can go to OSU or Bama and sit on the bench for 2 years behind other NFL players, or you can come to Kentucky and start.”

  46. Hal
    12:53 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    you are your coordinator’s keeper
    we cant hide you in the SEC if you cant coach
    this will be the hardest thing you do in your life

  47. BigBlue
    12:59 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    12) Neither of those losses were exactly “good losses” but they’re both to good teams who will be going to Bowl games this year. There’s been far more embarrassing losses (losing to 3-8 Louisiana Monroe in 1994 and losing to 4-8 Ohio U in 2004 both come to mind – and yes, I was at both of those games). UK’s record sucks this year, but we’ve also played the #1 hardest strength of schedule according to the computer rankings (at least through last week).

  48. BigBlue
    1:04 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    I wish somebody would explain to me the “facilities” argument again. I get that we don’t have the biggest or the newest stadium in the SEC (then again, Tennessee’s opened in 1921). But our stadium is in the top 30 or so of college football stadiums in the country (not counting college teams that play in pro stadiums like TSU on the Titan’s field in Nashville). We have a very nice field house. I just have trouble believing that either coaches or recruits choose not to come to UK because we don’t have a Penn Station concession stand or fancy architectural lighting in the recruiting room. And clearly, we don’t have any need for an 85,000+ capacity stadium right now.

  49. Jared
    1:09 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    If he can bring in both assistants then Tommy Tubberville needs to be the next head coach. His OC is a former player who runs the air raid, and his DC has done an INSANE job in 1 year.

    In 2011 TT ranked #114 in total defense, #120 in rushing defense and #117 in scoring defense. In short, Kaufman inherited a total mess. This year to date TT is #18 in total defense, #28 in rushing defense and #59 in scoring defense. That is outstanding improvement and a very impressive job by Kaufman. Would love to see what this trio could do at UK.

    If he can’t bring both, then get Dykes.

  50. Paul Marie
    1:19 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Kerry Coombs,
    Kerry Coombs,
    Kerry Coombs,
    Kerry Coombs.

    1:23 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Bring Mike Leach back… AIR RAID!!!

  52. Catlogic15
    1:33 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    #48. We don’t have a recruiting room.

  53. The Captain
    1:56 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Still havent understood why we have never requested this funding for football anytime over the last 10 years. If so maybe we could have already had better players to work with.

  54. Fecesforbrains
    2:12 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Keep in mind the elevator speech has now been reduced to 6 seconds according to popular sales marketing gurus..
    Potential coach: good afternoon thanks for holding how may I help you?

    MB: you are about to be inducted into the hall of fame and the most recognize able name and logo in all athletics and colleges will be on your chest. You sir will make Hoosiers Rudy and Brian’s Song forgotten. You and about 3 million fanatic dying for a football team fans will work together to finalize the last piece of s beautiful puzzle that covers most of if not all of the must beautiful state of the union . You will be afforded all the privileges and riches as if you were or are the second coming of Christ … That’s if u win 7 games and show nicely in a bowl game . You sir will receive the kings ransom in one lump sum when u return from the tour of the state with the national championship will have trucks liquor and children named after u along the way it’s the toughest job in America but u will live it eat it breathe it sleep it and love every second of it .. If I may please allow me to patch the greatest basketball personality in to affirm these claims … Now Cal joins the conversation and speaks of Kentucky and all it’s grandure…

    MB again: we have a good amount of talent coming back and we are QB rich with a heisman candidate in the roster you will win right away and go to a bowl next year with your talents and your recruiting prowess 5-0 will not be impossible and will receive 250,000 bonus and 100,000 per game bonus each game u win over 6 … The course is laid and the contract is ready so here’s the pen ..

  55. Fan-tastic
    2:14 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Come to Kentucky, where we have excellent Basketball coaches. We want to be a eminently good, first class program for a SEC school in Football. We know that the challenge is difficult and would like someone who is up for a challenge! We need a tough, mean and getter done coach,
    who is also good at recruiting the top notch players. If you belive in your self, we can belive in you. The SEC is the best college football program in america, so get ready and come on down, if needed we have coach cal on stand-by, for players trying to decide if they want to come here. All you have to do is: Coach your Team!

  56. Hal Mummy
    2:18 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Forrest Gregg isn’t coaching.

  57. Hal Mummy
    2:19 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Joe Paterno isn’t coaching.

  58. CAK
    2:19 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Jon Gruden Jay Gruden

  59. Will HIll
    2:25 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Pro: Previous successful coaches have gotten offers from schools like Baylor.

  60. Bob Hughes
    2:27 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Pros: You can bring recruits to Big Blue Madness or other UK basketball games to get a taste of how crazy the fans are here.
    Look around at our baseball, volleyball, softball, girls hoops, tennis and soccer teams. All are on the rise and having success and all that is missing to make UK one of the greatest destinations in America is high level football program and we think you are the man for the job!!
    Put together a few winning seasons with bowl wins and compete for a BCS game and we can guarantee your name will be in the circle of fame!! You can then run for Governor when your done coaching football.

    Cons: You will always be little brother to Cal and the basketball program

  61. Hal Mummy
    2:35 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Jerry Sandusky.

  62. HerpDerp
    2:49 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    I actually don’t buy the facilities issue. Anyone seen Kansas State’s facilities? They seem to be doing okay.

  63. bluegrassjimmy
    2:52 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    Bobby, WE know you are the best coach we could bring here, We know you can coach, hell you kicked our ass every year you were at Louisville, You were a good Pro Coach For Atlanta, YOU had the hogs positioned to contend for the national championship, and you did this in less than 3 years when the hogs were NOTHING! We have the money, take us to the top, we’ll take care of you!

  64. roshnip
    4:39 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    You can be another name on a list successful coaches at other schools. Come to UK and its “your name here” and Paul “Bear” Bryant.

  65. Patty San
    7:16 pm November 5, 2012 Permalink

    The greatest football coach ever (Bear Bryant)came here years ago when this football team was not very good and turned them into champions before leaving here to go to another SEC school and lead them to many championships. This could be you and your name could go down in history.
    The Kentucky fans will love every move you make to bring this team up from where we are now.
    BBN, need I say more.