With all but one player returning, 2011-12 looked like a great season for Kent State fans.
Kent State's two-time MAC Coach of the Year Geno Ford stunned fans by quickly accepting an offer to coach Bradley from the Missouri Valley Conference. This all happened so fast that star forward Justin Greene had to find out through Twitter.
At least in the short run, this will be a step back for the MAC's most successful program. It will also be a test for the new athletic director Joel Nielson. Laing Kennedy has proven that he can pick a great basketball coach. He did it several times.
The first name being mentioned is Rob Senderoff. Here is what two players told Dave Carducci of the Record Courier:
“All I know is I want to play for only one guy, and that’s Rob Senderoff and the staff we have here at Kent State,” said MAC player of the year Justin Greene. “It’s important to all of us that everything stays the same. This team has a chance to be too good to be broken up.”
While the star center took on the role of team spokesman, every player on the roster echoed the sentiment.
“If this staff comes back, we are going to be very good,” said Rutgers transfer Pat Jackson, who will play his first season with the Flashes next season. “If coach Senderoff isn’t the head coach, who knows if some of this team breaks up.”
“If it isn’t broken, don’t fix it,” said Greene, who will be back for his fourth season next season. “Why not keep it going? We’ve won the last two (regular-season championships) and probably 60-percent of that was Geno Ford, and 40-percent of that was coach Senderoff. Coach Senderoff has already been like a head coach on the court. He is the only one who can keep this all together.”
Ford is one of the classiest coaches you'll find in the country, so I'm sure he regrets not being able to tell his players personally.
In the aftermath of the MAC Championship game, he showed his class by instructing his players not to gripe about the last play. The easy thing to do would have been to allow the media and fans to protest the victory, but he let Akron and Keith Dambrot have the moment.
For those Kent State fans out there, below is a poll...
- 2013 (110)
- 2012 (199)
- 2011 (225)
- 2010 (266)
- 2009 (380)
- 2008 (327)
- 2007 (561)
- 2006 (605)
- 2005 (89)