Coaches Can’t Win Too Many

[stextbox id=”custom”]The more teams win, the greater the demands.

Indiana University has fired soccer coach Mike Freitag, despite an impressive record at the Bloomington school. He compiled an amazing 74-22-18 record at IU, including a national championship in 2004, his first season.

Freitag’s 12-10-1 mark this season was reason enough to sack him for IU athletic director Fred Glass, now searching for a replacement to carry on a tradition that includes six other national titles.

Advice to Glass: Leave Louisville’s Ken Lolla alone. He’s busy developing a national contender at U of L. And his boss knows the difference between a winner and a loser.


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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

3 thoughts on “Coaches Can’t Win Too Many

  • December 2, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    This Glass guy is worse than some fans I know. Coaching is challenge occupation because, as Kragthorpe noted, there is no patience these days. It’s the instant gratification society. But one thing I’ve noticed about the instant gratification people is that they usually haven’t accomplished much themselves.

  • December 3, 2009 at 3:29 pm

    It is absolutely pathetic on how this all unravelled. Freitag was a former player and assistant under Jerry Yeagley and then was recommeded for the head coaching position when the godfather (yeagley) retired. One would generally expect a hall of fame coach to walk away quietly into the sunset and leave a positive legacy. Yet yeagley was so consumed with IU soccer he couldn’t emotionally let go. He continually underminded the program, and this year it went too far. Calling present players and their parents, calling reporters, finding out which potential recruits IU was looking at and communicating to his son at Wisconsin and then showing up at the IU training sessions for 2 days prior to playing Wisonsin. The worst is that this legend had the audacity to attempt to persuade one of freitag’s assistants to leave IU to become an assistant for his son, Todd. We all realize it also about wins/losses but having a season ending meeting immediately after arriving back on campus at midnight is uncalled for. The fix was in, and it overshadows whether the decision was required. No proper process or protocol was followed. The program has embarassed itself more than any loss during the Freitag era

  • December 3, 2009 at 10:19 pm

    What’s embarrassing is how people respond with allegations without the ability or desire to provide any evidence (ahem, Steve).

    The issue in Bloomington was not Yeagley. Anyone trying to make that argument has not been watching the team play. The quality of the product on the field, and character of the players in the program, have been on a rapid and steady decline for 4+ years. It is easy – too easy – to look at the record and say “that ain’t bad” and “their expectations are too high.” In Bloomington, we define success by more than wins and losses. How you play on the field, the grit and personality of the team, the desire shown by players, the willingness of the coach to make difficult decisions, etc. All missing in Bloomington since Freitag took over.

    Despite mediocre play, he kept his favorite players on the field game in and game out. Every minute Noschang was on the field was a farce. Eric Alexander has been ineffective since his freshman year. Sarkodi made the same mistakes over and over. And they kept getting minutes, and many of them.

    You can characterize Freitag’s dismissal any way you wish. People will make assumptions about Yeagley’s role and critique Glass just because hating ADs is a Hoosier hobby. Go ahead with all of it – but base it on reality, not you heard from a friend of a friend of a friend heard from their nephew who knows a guy who’s in class with the back-up keeper’s ex-girlfriend.

    If you even try to do an objective assessment you will have to acknowledge the simple fact: Hoosier soccer has been on a downward spiral since Freitag took over. Don’t like it? Stick with Lolla – he’s building a heck of a program.

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