PROMPT: What qualities are you looking for in the next coach? Who do you think it should be?
Nick Kranz: Like Monty, but with marginally better recruiting? So, by that I mean one of (if not the) best tacticians and skill developers in the conference, but working with consistently high end high school talent up and down the roster? Is that waaaaay too greedy? Probably. But dammit, this is a fan base that deserves to be greedy for once.
atomsareenough: I think I'd like a younger guy who can potentially build the program into a powerhouse for many years to come. That doesn't necessarily mean a greenhorn who doesn't know what he's doing, though. Essentially I want the right blend of experience, energy, integrity, and acumen. Monty was a great X's and O's coach, but he wasn't the best recruiter and in recent years he seemed to have a little more trouble relating to players in a way that would fully motivate them. It'd be nice to find someone who can put together all of those components.
Obviously, every half-decent non-powerhouse major conference school (which we are) wants Shaka Smart (VCU) or Gregg Marshall (Wichita State). If one of those guys decides Berkeley is the great fit he's been waiting for, then hey, sign him up! Both of those are fairly young (well, Marshall's 51, but that's not old), experienced, extremely well regarded, have had great, dominant results both in the regular season but also in the NCAA Tournament, and seem to be good judges and developers of talent. I really like how both their teams execute and play smart basketball. Tommy Amaker (Harvard) would also be a nice hire, but as with the previous two guys, it seems unlikely that Cal would be able to pry him away. Josh Pastner (Memphis) is also pretty exciting to think about, but again, who knows if he'd leave Memphis.
Moving away from the buzz bin, some other names that could be interesting are Archie Miller (Dayton), Steve Kerr (wouldn't hurt to check if he were interested anyway), Danny Manning (Tulsa), and even Russell Turner (UC Irvine). All of those guys could be intriguing and potentially have some good upside, and aside from Kerr, I'd imagine they would likely say yes to a Cal offer. If we're looking at assistants, Mike Hopkins at Syracuse is presumed to be the heir apparent to Boeheim, but he's extremely well-respected and has been sought after for many head coaching jobs of late. Obviously there's also our own potential heir apparent, Travis DeCuire. Travis has a great reputation within the Cal community, the players seem to love him, and he's been shouldering most of the recruiting load in recent years anyway. Obviously he has Mike Montgomery's strong endorsement. If we can't get a clear home run hire like the 4 guys I mentioned in the previous paragraph, then maybe sticking with our internal hire isn't a bad option. I'd really want to know before I hired him what a Travis DeCuire-coached team would be all about, though. Continuity could be a good thing in a lot of respects, but I wouldn't want him going in there and trying to be Monty redux, either. What's his vision? Anyway, I'm not opposed to promoting DeCuire, but that shouldn't be the first option until we know where we stand with the home run hires.
Ruey Yen: Out of the guys rumored: I just hope it is NOT Joe Pasternack. Even though he was a Cal assistant under Braun at one point, I don't forgive him for that one incident when he kicked Jorge Gutierrez. I would be perfectly fine with giving Travis DeClure a shot. With that said, if we somehow get a Shaka Smart (subscribing to this pipe dream since Chris Petersen somehow decided to go to UW), I would be very very happy.
Berkelium97: I think we need an offensive mastermind whose high octane offense will light up the Pac-12 and put butts in the seats. I fully endorse Mike D'Antoni for our next coach!
Vincent S: A coach who gets the most out of his players. A coach that you would trust to recruit and lead California with class, dignity, and pride. A coach who would want to stay and build a long-lasting tradition in Berkeley.