FAYETTEVILLE, AR - JANUARY 7: Marvell Waithe #22 of the Arkansas Razorbacks drives to the basket past Rodney Hood #4 of the Mississippi State Bulldogs at Bud Walton Arena on January 7, 2012 in Fayetteville, Arkansas. The Razorbacks defeated the Bulldogs 98-88. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Last night it was announced that Rodney Hood would officially transfer, completing the flight of last year's starting roster to points other than Starkville. And as always is the case in these types of situations, the "I told you so" crowd has already been out in full force, reminding the rest of us Bulldog fans of how we should have never asked for Stansbury to be fired, and we are getting what we deserved.
First off, their arguments are completely off base, and here's why. Last night, amidst the wave of information that came out regarding the Hood transfer, Brandon Marcello tweeted this:
Ricky Hood tells me that he had to talk Rodney Hood out of leaving the program 2 1/2 months ago. More later. Got deadline to hit.— Brandon Marcello (@bmarcello) April 9, 2012
For those of you too lazy to do the math at home: that above tweet means that Rodney considered transferring during the last season, while Rick Stansbury was still the head men's basketball coach at Mississippi State. I think that tweet in itself should silence the I-told-you-so-er's, although I doubt it actually will. My point was that this transfer was not the fault of Rick Ray: the decision had basically already been made before he was ever even considered for the job. The transfer is not the fault of Scott Stricklin. If you want to blame him for botching the coaching search sure go right ahead but Rodney Hood leaving is not his fault either.
So what caused Rodney to ultimately leave? Maybe we'll find out the definitive answer soon, maybe never will. My guess is it had something to do with the nightmare season we just went through, and all of the mess that went on in the locker-room with Sidney and Moultrie and the rest of the team. We all want to pretend like a good character guy like Hood can just be immune to stuff like that, but at the end of the day I think it took its' toll on him just like it would have any of the rest of us. It probably did have a good bit to do too with Rodney wanting to win a championship, but Sidney, Moultrie and DeVille were all gone regardless of if Rick Stansbury was retained or if a new coach was brought in.
The point is: yes Stansbury should have still been "retired." Yes a change still needed to be made. If anything, this transfer reinforces that notion because it shows just how badly the program had gotten within. So if you are looking for someone to blame for Rodney's unhappiness, maybe you should not look at Coach Ray or Scott Stricklin. Maybe you should look towards the man you are so adamantly defending.
This post is not another bashing of Coach Stansbury. This post to to tell the people saying we should have kept Stansbury, the people who are saying this is what we get for wanting a coaching change, that this actually falls on the coach they're defending, further proving the point that a change was needed.