I officially heard it all regarding Sacred Heart athletics. Today, Bill Paxton of the Connecticut Post reported that former New York Mets and Boston Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine is a candidate to replace the retiring and beloved Don Cook as Sacred Heart athletic director.
There is no word if Art Howe or Dallas Green has any interest in the job.
In all seriousness, my initial emotion upon hearing the news was: “Wow, maybe I could meet him. Awesome!” (I’m a simple guy with a simple mind after all.) After further thought and filtering out my emotion as a lifelong and long suffering Mets and Bobby V fan, I began to wonder why exactly the best manager in recent Mets history would be qualified as an athletic director. I know he invented the sandwich wrap, but what exactly does he know about college athletics, budgets, and finding the right wrestling, fencing, or basketball coach?
I went back to relive the Bobby V history and thanks to Defiantly Dutch’s tweets, I fondly recall the Bobby V that tirelessly fundraised and volunteered to help those in need after 9/11. The hard work and exhaustive commitment he displayed as the manager of the Mets at the time to those families in need made me proud to be a Mets fan. Really, it’s so easy to forget those days after the recent one year debacle Bobby V went through up in Boston. If only he didn’t decide to pick on poor Mike Aviles after three days of training camp…
So, could Bobby V as an athletic director raise money for the university? Sure, why not. Could he given his determined work ethic and hands-on approach quickly adapt to the rigors of managing a Division I college athletic department? It seems likely. When you think about it, the Sacred Heart hierarchy certainly knows what they’re doing, thus I’m more likely to trust their original intuition that Bobby V is a worthy candidate for the job. Who am I to say he’d be an awful hire?
Before we get ahead of ourselves, however, please note that there are many more candidates for the athletic director position. Valentine is clearly the most notable of the group highlighted by Paxton, but that doesn’t make him the favorite to land the gig. Sacred Heart President John Petillo and his ties to Seton Hall University shouldn’t be ignored, as there appears to be plenty of candidates working in South Orange, NJ.
I’d like to see what you, the Sacred Heart and NEC fans think. Do you feel Bobby V would be a good hire? Please let me know in the poll above and if you’d like to elaborate further, feel free to do so in the comments section.
Until next time…
Ryan Peters covers Sacred Heart men’s basketball for Pioneer Pride and Big Apple Buckets. You can follow Ryan on Twitter @pioneer_pride