Monday, March 17, 2008

Billy Donovan has lost it

Ripping his team following its SEC Tournament loss apparently wasn't enough for Billy Donovan. The Florida coach recently banned players from the school's $12 million facility and also said they couldn't wear any Florida attire as a motivational tool.

The two-time defending national champs lost eight of their last 11 and are headed to the NIT, which clearly did not sit well with Donovan.

"When you have great success like we've had," Donovan said. "I think it's very, very easy to become complacent and to lose sight of how good things are around here and to have an attitude of, 'I'm at Florida. This is just what's going to happen.'"

For the past four days, the Gators have been unable to get into the facility which contains the locker room, practice court, video room, weight room and both national championship trophies.

Football coach Urban Meyer employed similar motivational tactics in the summer of 2005, barring players from the locker room and preventing them from wearing anything with orange and blue or the Gators logo on it. Florida went on to win nine games for the first time in four years and took home the national title the following year.

Which brings me to my question: Is Donovan a moron or genius? Sometimes players need extreme tactics like this to reach their full potential. My feeling, however, is that Donovan has gone too far. I think he could have achieved the same result without publicly embarrassing his players.

I understand that a point needed to made, but to do it in this manner reflects poorly on Donovan, the wishy-washy prima dona who has clearly been spoiled by two national titles. It seems to me that Donovan cares more about himself than his players, which I find troubling.


Unknown said...

...It's a little late for brilliant motivational tactics. Plus, how many first round draft picks did the gators graduate last year? Donovan is no Rick Pitino no matter how many hard-line, unorthodox coaching methods he employs.

Chip Robie said...

I agree with Andrew. How about his respect for his players as students of the University of Florida? He's acting like his team is a hapless bunch, when in fact by most indications, they did better than what anyone reasonably would have expected.