As rumors of Oklahoma State buying out Travis Ford are swirling we decided to sit down and talk about Stillwater's favorite villain: Travis Ford.
We have come up with some pros and cons of head coach Travis Ford's career at Oklahoma State. These aren't the end-all be-all list of pros and cons, and hopefully the informality of the piece can encourage a discussion in the comment section - a dialectical discourse, if you will.
A quick note: this piece is not a call to fire anyone, nor is it a rant to incite a cyber-riot. Rather, it was created to start a conversation - a conversation that we hope you can be a part of in the comments below.
Here's a quick overview of Ford's Career as the Cowboys' head coach:
|Year||Overall||Conference||Standing||Postseason||Highest Conference Win Streak||Highest Conference Loss Streak|
|2008-2009||23-12||9-7 .||T-4th||Lost in 2nd Round (NCAA)||6||2|
|2009-2010||22-11||9-7 .||T-6th||Lost in 1st Round (NCAA)||3||3|
|2010-2011||20-13||6-10 .||9th||NIT)"]" style="padding: 2px 3px 2px 3px; vertical-align: bottom;">Lost in 2nd Round (NIT)||2||4|
|2012-2013||24-9||13-5||3rd||Lost in 1st Round (NCAA)||7||1|
|2013-2014||21-13||8-10 .||8th||Lost in 1st Round (NCAA)||4||7|
|2014-2015||18-14||8-10 .||T-6th||Lost in 1st Round (NCAA)||3||4|
Here's the list of bullet points, eight for and eight against, that we created regarding Travis Ford and his future at Oklahoma State:
The Pros of Travis Ford
- In seven seasons, Ford has 20 wins over top-25 teams, with ten of those games being against top-10 opponents
- His team has defeated either the #1 or #2 team in the country three times
- He has received credit for instilling his defensive focus and underdog mentality in his teams
- He has 18 years of experience at the head coaching position, coaching at Campbellsville, Eastern Kentucky and Umass, as well as Oklahoma State
- He has seen a handful of Cowboys move on to play to the NBA, including James Anderson, Marcus Smart and Markel Brown
- He has been accredited by many with the development of Cowboys like Byron Eaton, Marshall Moses and Markel Brown
- He has a reputation as a persistent recruiter, with three top-25 recruiting classes in his time at OSU
- He has had a recruiting class ranked as highly as fourth by HoopScoop.com
The Cons of Travis Ford
- He has never won either a regular season or tournament conference championship with Oklahoma State
- In his seven seasons, his highest finish in regular season conference standings was third
- He has been criticized for his offensive philosophy and late-game situational strategy
- He hasn't reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament since his first season in 2008
- Under his time at OSU, the Cowboys are one of only four teams with only one NCAA Tournament win in six years
- In the only season where OSU started the season ranked (2013-2014), the Cowboys plummeted from #8 to unranked by the end of the regular season
- He was included in Forbes' Most Overpaid College Hoops Coaches piece
- According to pistolsfiringblog.com, his Cowboys have only held two minutes and 51 seconds worth of NCAA Tournament leads in the last four years.
Again, this piece was meant to be written informally as to help spark conversation. If you feel that you have your own input, please be sure to add them below. Hopefully this can act as a catalyst for an all-inclusive discussion in the comments.
I won't tell you what you should think because it's important for you to take all the information above and form your own opinions. But maybe - just maybe - there is more than one side to this story. What do you think?