the press release from GU: Cleve Wright is leaving Gannon to accept the same position at Division I Miami (Oh.). At right is a photo from Miami's 3PM press conference today. Details to follow.
Updated 4/21/13: Before I share my thoughts on this subject, be sure to check out the comments section of this post. Internet message boards are often filled with mistruths, mindless drivel, and character assassination, but Gannon Hoops fans have done a nice job paying tribute to Coach Wright.
I recall talking with a college coach about 20 years ago about the criteria that separates a great coach from a good one. He said there's only one criterion that matters: Would you want your kid to play for them? Add that perspective to John Wooden's definition: A coach is someone who can give correction without causing resentment.
From both those perspectives, Cleve Wright proved to be a tremendous coach at Gannon. He attracted first-class players, molded them into better people and a cooperative unit, and they adored him for it. I've been fortunate to interact witch Cleve over the years and talk at length with others who knew him away from basketball. Everyone described him as classy, a gentleman, humble, great with the kids, kind to everyone, a winner. He not only built a winning program at Gannon, but he constructed a positive community where girls developed into successful young women.
As far as who will replace him, I'd like to start a baseless rumor. This will not be the first time I've done this. Back in 2002 after Jodi Kest resigned, I floated an absurd rumor on my Flagship 1330 radio program that Marcel Arribi was a candidate for the Lady Knights job. He was a Gannon alum, had lots of success in Erie at Prep, and was at that time an assistant for Fordham's women's basketball team. Much to my surprise, when the Erie Times listed candidates for the job, Marcel was among them. The next day the Times issued a correction -- I believe at the behest of Arribi -- that he was absolutely under no circumstances interested in the job. So here's my absurd rumor, circa 2013:
The next Gannon women's coach will be Angie Potthoff, the Mercyhurst Prep graduate and former Penn State All-American who is now serving on the Notre Dame women's basketball staff. After 8 years at national power ND, the Erie native is ready to move home and run her own program.
My source for that is pure conjecture. But it sounds good on the surface, doesn't it? Whoever gets the job won't experience a middle-of-the-road season. The Knights will either have a dream season (win the national championship in Erie) or a nightmare (miss the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have a loaded team back and the Elite 8 in your backyard). It will be drama either way.