The First 48 Hours of Mack 2.0
Henceforth, if I EVER type the phrase “Mack Is Back”… JUST SHOOT ME. For seven years I never did one single play on words about “Fedora / Hat” which put me in a minority of one. Saying what everyone else says the way everyone else says it is not what I do here.
Is there a Richter Scale for a Media Tsunami? If so, what did UNC Rehires Mack Brown register? Really High!
The backwash from the initial announcement of Mack’s Return is still splashing about along the highways and byways in a 100-mile concentric circle from the intersection of I-40 and Miami Boulevard…. “Ground Zero” for 97% of the human race that “might” spell Doeren or Cutcliffe correctly or know (or care) “How many Choos in Choo Choo”.
I still bet The Butcher doesn’t know or care. Larry Fedora never bothered to ask “how many Choos” either.
I’m sure Mack knows how many. The answer, of course, is “2”. Has Mack (or Sally) ever read Look Homeward Angel? Who has?
Some sports guy with WRAL – not named Adam or Joe or Jeff – wrote a fine piece about Why Larry Fedora Is Gone… noting it was NOT one reason but a camel’s back load of reasons. I agree. What was “the straw” that broke that camel’s back? It might have been The Nightmare In Dowdy-Ficklin back in early September on top of “Shoe-gate”… on top of “CTE-gate”… on top of…?
Doesn’t matter… he’s gone. Larry never “fit” at UNC.
I’m not sure what “a good fit for UNC” means or if that is a desired term to strive for.
Bill Dooley was not… Dick Crum was not… “Burly John” almost was, but wasn’t… The Butcher was not… Fedora was not. No clue about Carl Snavley. “Sunny Jim” Tatum was not as good a fit as “legend has it” but “tragic death” has a way of distorting reality. See “Valvano, Jim”…
“Saint Dean” was THE 110% PERFECT FIT for UNC. UNC alums/fans loved and mythologized(?) DES for his decades of on-court successes. UNC faculty loved him because he could spell Nietzsche and recruited Charlie Scott away from Lefty Driesell at the 11th hour.
Ol’ Roy “fits” because he has a death grip on Dean’s coattails despite having no clue who/what Nietzsche was. … or who Julius Nyang’oro or Deborah Crowder are either. … wink, wink.
Mack doesn’t know Nietzsche either; but, if you asked him he will divert the conversation into a 10-minute series of sappy Mack-isms during which he will use your name at least three times. When he stops to take a breath, you will have forgotten your question and be convinced Mack is your BFF.
That is a rare talent and Mack Brown is a Grand Master of It.
No one knows Mack’s politics that I know of. And he (Mack) is crafty enough that we’re never gonna know, which is “the smart play”.
Unlike all of those other UNC HFCs, Mack understands the local rivalry minefield. Bunting understood it but was not media-savvy enough to handle it. The Butcher and Fedora had both been in “Real Football Rivalries” so neither of them gave the local State / Duke / UNC stuff much importance. They should have…
“When in Rome…” it is very important to appreciate the Romans REALLY hate the Carthaginians so you need to REALLY hate the Carthaginians too.
The Visigoths are hated too… but not as much as those sorry, no-account Carthaginians.
Mack gets it. Mack knows how the local Braggin’ Rights silliness works. It isn’t Texas vs Oklahoma, but this isn’t Texas either.
I assume all of you reading this – regardless of school loyalty – know that:
Mack Brown and Dave Doeren have the same “agent”. No, not Jimma Sexton. His name is Jordan Bazant.
“Having the same agent” doesn’t mean “squat”. 99% of the rivalry feces that get thrown back & forth doesn’t mean “squat”. Add Jordan Bazant to that pile of “squat”.
OK. Lets hit the Two Key Points that EVERYONE around these parts is obsessed with over the past 48 hours…
Mack’s Age… By his first Kenan “Jr” game next September, Mack will be 68. Roy is 68… Nick Saban is 67…Krzyzewski is 71… Cutcliffe is 64… “The Butcher” is 67… Justice Ruth Buzzi Ginsberg is 85. Noah’s Grandfather Methusalah lived to be 969 if one takes the Old Testament literally.
If they haven’t already, NC State recruiters will soon be Tweeting, Texting, Facebooking and Instragraming every High School (and Jr Hi just to be sure) football player in North Carolina that (1) MACK BROWN IS FREAKIN’ 68 YEARS OLD… (2) MACK BROWN will be reretired, if not dead and buried, within 2-3 years… (3) MACK BROWN uses a flip phone and thinks “rap” is what you do to Christmas presents… and (4) … and (5) … I probably would be doing that if I was them.
Refer to my Fred & Ethel column for Fred’s theory on how “those eeeevil State people used TGU against Larry”…. yawn.
Mack Brown IS 20 years older than he was when “he lied to ‘dem boys” and ran off to Texas. That’s a fact. He does NOT use that Industrial-strength “Just For Men” that Coach K uses.
When Mack “lied and left” 20 years ago, area “hated rival fans” disliked him a lot. 20 years later their “Mack jokes” haven’t changed as much as Mack’s hair color. To no ones surprise.
Five years ago when Mack resigned at Texas he was 63… but looked 75. The stress of that situation showed in every aspect of his physical appearance. He seems to have “recharged his batteries” since then, and now “looks about 67”.
I look for Mack to create a unique CEO role for himself… using the organizational and executive staff management skills he has always been noted for… and, of course, his renown booster backslapping and shmoozing talents.
Those shmoozing talents get poo-pooed by hated-rival fans who have never been a major college FB / MBB coach. But highly valued by anyone who has been or is.
His Staff … The rumors are rampant re: who will be DC, OC, etc etc etc. I haven’t seen Steve Logan’s name yet but surely he’s on some loonie’s “I heard that ….” list. I expect one/both Coordinators to be well-known among those who know such people… either former HCs or Established Gurus.
The rest of the staff to be guys who played for, coached for, or otherwise Mack has known. The $$$ to pay them “is NOT an issue”. One of them MIGHT be designated Asst Head Coach or even designated Heir Apparent… but that might not be revealed for a year or so.
All of Mack’s staff will (1) use state-of-the-art techno-devices and… (2) all of them will “tweet & text”… and (3) be able to name at least three “famous rappers”. The fine art of Recruiting 2018 will be well-known to those assigned to do it. They will be as “savvy” in their tactics as the coaches they are recruiting against.
No current Big Name Coach regardless of age is any better than his meat-on-the-hoof… i.e. the depth of the talent on his roster.
If Mack can construct, delegate and maintain that CEO role, he could easily “do it” with success for 6-7-8+ years, but more likely 5-6 before stepping aside for that Heir Apparent.
Five years from now will be 2023. How many current Triangle-area HFCs and/or ACC HFCs will be in their current positions in 2023 ???
Defining “Success”… 5-6 Ws in 2019 would be “nice”. More will be “nicer”. Ws over “hated rivals” count double. 7-8-9 Ws by 2020 … will be expected with Ws over one/both “hated rivals” strongly advised.
Will Mack 2.0 Awaken The Sleeping Giant? IF that means… draw 40,000+ to Kenan Jr in nice weather versus a “name opponent” then Yes.
If that means… “cause Dabo to lose sleep wondering what Mack is up to”… then No.
In Conclusion: Would “that guy at Appy”… or “the guy at Memphis” … or “Hotshot Coordinator at …” … or “Whozit at Troy”… be better suited than Mack Brown to lead UNC Football for the foreseeable 5+-year future ? I don’t think so.
Mack Brown already knows how many Choos in Choo Choo… and Sally will buy him a copy of Look Homeward Angel to place prominently in his office… right next to that brand new fish tank.
Will Mack be clever enough to keep that copy of Wolfe’s Look Homeward Angel opened to the classic line… “You Can’t Go Home Again.” … OUCH!
Want some highly partisan political opinions.