Harold Rayford, the coach at Tennessee Prep (Memphis), has nominated himself to replace John Calipari as the next head coach of the USA U19 team.
Calipari just led the United States to a disappointing bronze medal finish in the FIBA World Cup.
After the game, Rayford had this to say on Twitter:
— Harold Rayford (@coachrayford) July 10, 2017
Here is his reasoning via USA Today High School Sports:
I have watched the U19 team the whole way through. I truly believe that the USA should have won the gold medal. With all the talent — athleticism, length, natural ability — a structure should have been in place to showcase the sport which we have birth[ed]. I see that other countries have adapted our styles and that is cool, but we should have that toughness that we once had in previous years. Toughness is what allowed Canada to win the gold medal. Our guys played OK, but not to the level where they have to see that this a business.
I teach, and I teach toughness and the everyday fight for success. I come from that environment in New York, where you need that to survive whether that’s on the court or in everyday life. How does the team develop team toughness? Through the coach and/or the leader.
The USA has gone away from toughness. Coach Bobby Knight was tough. Today we have Coach K, who came from that Bobby Knight coaching tree. Coach Nolan Richardson was tough coach. Who are the tough coaches now? Gregg Popovich, Tom Thibodeau, Frank Martin.