Crean on Job Rumors: "See my track record"

Tom Crean met with the media Monday evening to discuss Saturday night's victory over Notre Dame in South Bend as well as the Golden Eagles' upcoming game in Louisville Wednesday against the Cardinals . Crean also addressed questions about the rumors that mention his name as a candidate for some of the high profile college coaching jobs that will come available at seasons end. MarquetteHoops.com's Andrew Sharos was there....

Have there ever been so many high profile college basketball jobs that opened up in the middle of the season? A tragic drunk driving incident with Hall of Fame coach Eddie Sutton of Oklahoma State has left the Cowboys without their coach for the rest of the season. Mike Davis recently announced that he will leave Indiana University at the conclusion of the season. A month ago, a former interviewee for the Marquette job in 1999--Quinn Snyder was fired from Missouri. Rumors are still swirling about Kentucky's Tubby Smith joining the NBA ranks and Rutgers coach Gary Waters just announced today that he will likely resign at season's end. Add it all up, and that's a lot of major conference job openings.

When a major program has a job opening, most schools opt to hire a high profile coach from another school as opposed to promoting some assistant within the program. Recently, Tom Crean's name been mentioned as a top candidate for the Indiana job along with a host of other options. ESPN college basketball writer Andy Katz and CBS's Seth Davis have also mentioned Crean as a good fit for the Hoosiers.

During Marquette's Monday evening press conference, Crean confirmed how unfitting a time this was to discuss his own future. His Golden Eagles recently locked up a trip to the NCAA tournament by virtue of their impressive road victory over rival Notre Dame.

"There are so many other things going on with our team, this never becomes a hindrance," Crean said of the swirling rumors about him moving on from Marquette. "I don't take it one way negative or positive. I guess it beats your name being on a ‘hot seat' list."

Crean admittedly has heard the talk about other jobs this year. He does find himself in a familiar situation though. As recently as the summer of 2004, Crean was being talked about as a top candidate for the Ohio State job and in the summer of 2003, was rumored to be on Illinois's list.

"Go to the track record. There has never been any reason to think those things (leaving)," said Crean. "I have a long term contract and a young team. Every once and awhile it can become a distraction but if we can control distractions, we are going to control them. In this case, it is no distraction and it doesn't affect me."

When asked if he was flattered that so many other schools have considered him on a list of their list of possible head coaches, Crean again reiterated how much he liked his current job at Marquette. He said that he was more flattered that he got a contract extension last season and that his contract has been renewed several times since arriving at Marquette in 1999.

Crean hasn't been the only member of the Marquette camp to hear the rumors swirling around the college basketball world. Freshmen point guard Dominic James said he has heard some talk about his head coach, whom he cites as the primary reason for coming to Marquette.

"I think it's hilarious," said James of the rumors. "He has a great situation here at Marquette and we have the potential to win a lot of games. There isn't a better place for him right now. I know his goal is to become a hall of fame coach and I think he can do that here. He knows he can do that here. We are both in the same boat, trying to build on the tradition here at Marquette."

People can always change their minds, but on Monday evening, Crean didn't hesitate one bit. While the national and local media may still prod the question to Crean about moving on, it sounds like he is content in Milwaukee.


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