Calling All Aggies :: 03/26/10

Written By: Steve Macy, NM State Associate Athletic Director

I have been trying to stay out of this and keep my mouth (and fingers) shut on this issue, but I think it is too important to ignore.

During most of the season, I read and heard people disparaging the men’s basketball program, and especially Head Coach Marvin Menzies. Even the Sun News Sports Editor, Teddy Feinberg, took a swing at Coach Menzies, saying that since he took over, the program has been spiraling downward. The attacks on Coach Menzies and the program were at times viscous, but always consistent. Those attacks continued up until the WAC Tournament.

Forward ahead by three weeks and the Aggies season is over, with a WAC Tournament Championship and a near-miss in the NCAA Tourney against nationally-ranked Michigan State. You would expect these same people who spent so much time and energy disparaging the program and the coach to admit they perhaps they were quick to judge, or maybe they were wrong. But, no.

What are we hearing instead? Really, it is two things:

1. The team started playing better with the WAC Tournament, with no mention of credit for the coaching staff.
2. Coach Menzies really grew starting with the WAC Tournament.

To believe number one, you have to also believe that Coach Menzies has no input on the team’s wins and losses, but then you would be left without being able to blame him for anything bad. To believe number two, you would have to believe that for almost three seasons he has been coaching the Aggies, a light switch went off and suddenly, overnight, he “grew” as a head coach.

Both of these explanations we have been seeing and hearing are quite simply disingenuous. They do not pass any sort of test of reality other than to provide cover for people that don’t have the internal fabric to admit error. It really is sad, because they are so many great Aggie fans that vastly outnumber the hit-and-run “fans.”

Here are some of the things the people who refuse to give Menzies credit for succeeding at NM State fail to admit or acknowledge:

· Won a share of the WAC Regular-Season Championship in his first year, despite losing the starting point guard and power forward from the previous year
· Reached the WAC Tournament Championship in his first year, and two of the team’s stars missed shots that would have won the game at the end of regulation and the end of the first overtime.
· Had to replace almost the entire list of major players and elected to replace them with four-year players, rather than transfers and JuCos in order to build a strong program for the future, rather than a quick fix.
· Has won more games in his first three years as a head coach at NM State than any other coach, except for the guy with his name on the court.
· Has won two championship trophies in his first three years as head coach.
· Is a good family man and quality person

For some reason, there is a group of people who have decided to try and tear down the men’s basketball program. For the rest of us, we need to remember the list of things above and know that our program is being built for the long term. I know I am proud of what Marvin has done and am very excited about the future. Please join me in being a positive voice.

We Are All Crimson

Comments

Thank You

I'm glad to know someone else feels the same way I do. The whole year I have been saying the exact same things to the naysayers. The future is bright for Aggie Basketball!
GO AGGIES!!!!

HE IS WINNING 60% OF HIS

HE IS WINNING 60% OF HIS GAMES AND IS ALREADY IN THE TOP 5 IN TERMS OF WINS IN AGGIE COACHING HISTORY...... HE MAY NOT BE FIREY ON THE COURT BUT HE GETS THRU TO HIS PLAYERS......HE IS DOING A GREAT JOB WITH OUR TEAM..... TEAMS WIN WHEN THEY HAVE GOOD FANS THAT SUPPORT AND SHOW UP TO GAMES WHICH WITH A CITY OF CLOSE TO 90K AND THE PAN AM FITS 13K+ OUR AVERAGE ATTENDANCE BEING 5,000 I THINK OUR CITIES FANS NEEDA QUITE DOWN SHOW UP FOR SOME GAMES TO SHOW OUR TEAM THEY BACK THEM B4 ANYONE CAN SAY ANYTHING ABOUT WHAT "MARVELOUS" MARIN MENZIES IS DOING WITH THE PROGRAM..

Credit where credit is due and blame? The same.

Mr Macy

You are no more accurate in your righteous praise of Marvin Menzies after a successful WAC tourney than those of us who criticized coach after an abysmal season start.

It pains me to have to respond to this as I would prefer to basque in the positive end of the season and the fact that our coach and our program have grown. I am proud of where we ended the season and agree with our coach's long-term approach to the program. I'd prefer to stay positive rather than respond to "told you so" letters such as yours.

But if you believe that criticism wasn't warranted for the embarrassing losses we had early on or want to ignore the consistent horrible season starts we've had the past 3 years and our dismal record against our rivals, than who is being disingenuous? The reality of our program is somewhere in-between the bliss you portray in your selective highlights and the lows of our 3-9 record against UTEP/UNM.

Part of the reason so many of us were so disappointed at the start of this season is because we waited patiently as a promising inaugural season under MM was flitted away and a second season with young players was painfully inconsistent. Then, in the WAC tourney last year, the team showed great promise and that promise is what many fans had high hopes for entering this season. Missing two players certainly dampened that optimism but it doesn't take away the accountability of the coach.

As we end this season, we again have much to look forward to. LIke many fans, I'm optimistic that we'll start the season off great and perhaps be an at-large team at season end. But if we experience 20 point losses to our rivals next season at home with 30 turnovers, you can again expect the coach to get criticized - no matter who is and who isn't on the court.

It's not tearing anything down. It's not personal. It's life.

Bravo Steve Macy!

I loudly applaud Macy for the commentary, including the "I told you so" tone directed at a certain group of misguided Aggie fans. These are those who were over the top with criticism now claiming it was just all meant as a red flag, just worry, or reaction to a bad loss at UNM or UCLA. Several of these basketball geniuses said getting Wen and Gillenwater back wouldn't make any difference! The program was "broken" and the only fix was firing Menzies. An ugly mob mentality developed that went way beyond the constructive criticism or concern about the direction of the program that some would now like to claim as their motive...revisionist history and failure to man up and say you were just wrong, I say.

Many remember just how bad it was last December, including Mr. Macy and the basketball staff. There are some who will still not let it go. Sad indeed.

Bravo, Steve Macy for calling out the whiners (as John Keith rightfully called them), many of whom really know little about basketball, had grossly overinflated expectations at the start of the year, and were ready to throw a good coach under the bus during a difficult time.

Shame on you Steve Macy...

I loudly condemn Steve Macy's "I told you so" litte patronizing speech. This program had problems. Academic problems, players attitudes, coaching calls that were questionable, "ZERO" defense that was the norm all year, and promotions to stimulate attendance that really didn't promote anything (that one is for you Steve Macy). Giving away fake mustaches and letting 80 year old people in free with proof of ID is not going to cut it. Without mentioning other problems I will reiterate this program had issues and still might. As far as Macy's "points" defending Marvin here is the other side of the coin. This poster never said getting back Wen and Gillenwater would not help. However, ever year Aggie fans have to hold their collective breath if our players are going to qualify academically or if one might get arrested or do something stupid to embarrass NMSU. I guess Marvin has nothing to do with that. Mel posted NMSU in basketball has one of the worst graduation rates in Amercia. I feel a coach should have a lot to do with that. I guess Macy does not. As far as Marvin's first year where we "won" the regular season in the WAC. NMSU tied practically 1/2 the conference for the regular season championship with an 11-5 record. Winning a four way tie for first place does not get my butthole puckering like I guess it does for Steve. We lost at home to Boise State in the WAC championship game. No postseason that year. 21-14 record. I call that a medicore record. (Under has made that point over and over about the Lobos shared championships). Macy's arguement about we if we had not missed a basket here or there we would have won this game or that. Doesn't that apply to every team? Is Nevada going to brag this year that if Jahmar hadn't hit that jumper they would have been in the championship game? Come Steve. You can do better than that one. Every team loses key players every year. You are actually going to use that as an arguement for your point? Lame.

Very low attendance. This team this year played very unspirited selfish basketball on many occasions this year which lead to lousy crowds. I'm sure Macy, Menzies and McKinley are all crying in their office blaming 100% on the fans of Las Cruces. I agree many fans are fair weather but Menzies, who is one of the nicest guys you will ever meet needs more interaction with the community. Menzies and Steve Macy probably work 80 hour work weeks and I commend them for their hard work. But patronizing the fans and giving a little "Calling all Aggies" speeches is insulting to a fan that has attended games regularly for over 30 years when who the hell knows where Macy was. Rojo and others can suck an egg if they don't like it when fans voice their opinions about certain obvious faults of the program that need improvement.

I agree the season ended with a bang and Marvin's strategy and coaching was superb during the WAC and NCAA tourney. I was depressed for a week after Michigan State. Marvin called an incredible game. I think Marvin is evolving right before our eyes and I will say I think he COULD be one of the premier coaches in America and I will be very sad the day he leaves for a bigger high paying job. Only time will tell if he continues to grow after this year or if it will be another 18-20 year win season and hoping we will the WAC tourney to make the big dance. We will see if all our guys will be eligible to play the beginning of the season. These are all things that still have not been done. When Marvin accomplishes those things then we can all bend one knee in front of Marvin and render him what is due. However, IMO Marvin still has things to prove although I do think he is headed in the right direction.

This is a job for you Steve Macy. I wouldn't be surprised if someday you move on to bigger $$$s for some other school. This is an adventure for the fans, not just a job.