clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Northwestern basketball preview: Bill Carmody, the eternal question

Bill Carmody has been Northwestern's head coach for 12 full seasons, going on 13. What does he have to do in 2012-13 to keep his job?

Reese Strickland-US PRESSWIRE

Sure Northwestern basketball season already started. Yeah, that game against Mississippi Valley State was pretty much what we've been waiting the whole offseason for and totally had a major impact on Northwestern's NCAA Tournament chances (wanks)

Anyway, here's a bunch of posts about Northwestern's upcoming basketball season where SoP's contributors got together to say how they felt about the team. We wanna hear what you have to say too!

Today: A fun one for Thanksgiving, guys!

Bill Carmody has been Northwestern's coach for, at this point, 13 seasons. In the first 12: no NCAA Tournament appearances. It seems like every year, we ask la question Carmody: should Northwestern fire him if he doesn't make the NCAA Tournament? Last year, 48 percent of you thought it depended on how close they were. Northwestern, it turned out, was very close: with, by my count, three overtime losses, and an additional games decided by last second shots, any one of which might have gotten NU into the tournament. Instead, nothing went Northwestern's way, and Carmody stayed.

NU once again seems like a bubbly squad. If they're in, Bill is good. So here's the question: what does Northwestern basketball have to do this season for Bill Carmody to see season No. 14?


As long as the season is not a complete disaster like a bottom 3 finish in the Big Ten, I think Bill Carmody keeps his job one more year due to the cautionary tale with our dear friends from Champaign who ended up with their 73rd coaching choice after firing Bruce Weber last season. Having said that, if Mike Brown is still available we gotta snag him...


I think he needs at least a top 8 seed in the NIT. I don't necessarily think the NCAA tournament is make-or-break for Carmody, just because all indications seem to be that as long as he keeps the team competitive, his job is safe, for better or worse. But the team has to be in the mix right up until the end. If Selection Sunday is relevant for Northwestern, which would be the first time ever, even if we end up being one of the bubble burst teams, he stays. But if Northwestern's out of tournament contention midway through the conference season, then his seat gets really, really warm. I can't really fathom how Carmody could keep his job without at least an 8-10 record in Big Ten play, but the guy seems to have nine lives. I happen to like Carmody, and I think he's stabilized the program after a few of his more putrid years. But at some point, you have to take the team to the next level. Hopefully that's this year.


I don't see him getting fired unless Northwestern falls short of the NIT, and even then maybe not. He's lasted this long, right?


Uhhhhh, this one's tough. On the one hand, Carmody's had NU close for four straight seasons and has his best recruiting classes ever coming in year after year after year. But on the other, 13 years! It's a testament to how little you care if you keep someone whose had a single goal and failed 13 times, regardless of how tough that goal is.

I think if NU does the same thing they have for the past few seasons - another NIT or better season where you're clearly on the bubble - Carmody should stay. If NU can't do that, I don't think you can justify keeping him. I really like Carmody as a coach for his demeanor, sense of humor, and basketball smarts, but if you're not trending up at the end of your 13th season, you shouldn't get a 14th. I also don't know who's gonna score points next year with Drew Crawford gone, so maybe after this season is time for a change.