If Kalani Sitake racks up the wins, can BYU hang on to him?


Question for BYU and its fans:

Would you rather have another great season, say, one or two losses, under Kalani Sitake, thus making him a more attractive candidate for a college football temptress, or would you rather have a rather enjoyable season and keep him carefree in? a foreseeable future?

The answer is obvious.

Winning en masse is what everyone wants.

But what is obvious brings with it anxiety.

The reason for the question is that it is said by some people who cover such things that Sitake is, in fact, a legitimate candidate to become the next head coach of USC.

Is it really true?

Beats me.

This is not the way to bet, Sitake actually being selected by the powers of Southern Cal, but let’s say it as it is. If he continues to win at BYU, he will be the target of more schools like this one.

Yeah, nice problem to have.

Sitake would be particularly effective for Trojans, as it would be well equipped to tackle a few issues that would go a long way to getting this program back to where it should be – at the top of college playing in the West and beyond.

First of all, he’s a good recruiter. Some might look at BYU’s recruiting rankings with Sitake at the helm and think otherwise. But… how accurate are these rankings? Take a look at last season’s Super Bowl starter ratings and note the number of 2 and 3 star players who have risen to the top of the professional game. Alabama gets more 4 and 5 stars than that. The number of these stars, however, seems to increase when Nick Saban shows up at player lounges. BYU does not have this effect. And with its academic and honor code limitations, recruiting at Provo should be weighed on another scale.

Sitake is warm and sympathetic, a man who can relate to himself and wrap his big arms around gifted young rookies and their parents, convincing them that he cares about the most important things, not just winning football games.

Second, Sitake is a bad, tough mother. Beneath his cordial demeanor, he is as much a fighter as a lover. And that’s how he likes his football.

He could get USC what he needs – big, strong linemen on offense and defense, guys who will play hard for him. Play the kind of football Trojans should focus on with the talent pool at their disposal. Southern Cal may dominate the prep landscape in Southern Cal.

If Trojans can get the best athletes, partly based on great tradition, and those athletes correctly aim to play strong, basic football, that should be a killer formula.

That is, why play fancy, fantasy football in SC – like the air raid – when, with the talent he has, he can pitch teams with a balanced and straightforward approach?

That’s not to say Sitake would or should return to John McKay’s offensive tactic of leaving the student body to the left, the student body to the right, but, as a full-back who likes his team to mix him up with a Combo pack of strength and emotion, and brutal defense, he could give USC what it needs. He coordinated the D of Utah in impressive performances under Kyle Whittingham.

Think about what he could do with the staff at USC.

That’s what he would do: evaluate it and organize it.

And make a lot more money doing that than he gets, even with his recently extended contract, at BYU.

Most head coaches think the money is good and contracts are easily erased.

Third, Sitake is experienced, but still young, which means he used his mistakes while learning in other places, and if he is successful in Troy, he will have longevity as well.

Fourth, that Sitake is Polynesian is a wonderful and diverse thing. It’s not the thing, but useful, allowing him to better identify with players whose coaches do not always look like who they are. It does not matter if the necessary knowledge is absent, but if it is present in large quantities, it can be extremely powerful.

The downside to Sitake at SC is a general lack of patience there. If he started with the Trojans like he did with the Cougars, going 9-4, 4-9, 7-6, 7-6, he would have no opportunity to soar to to 11-1 the following year. He would be fired, like Clay Helton was and like the others before him.

LaVell Edwards told me, when he was offered a big deal with the Detroit Lions at the time, the smartest thing he ever did was turn it down. He said he would have made a lot of money in a short period of time, but only lasted maybe three or four seasons and then looked for another job.

He said staying at BYU was movement, non-movement, for him.

Every coach is somewhat insecure. Lose too much and… boom, you’re gone. This also happens to BYU.

No one knows at this point what the Sitake team will end up doing this season. But if he wins, and keeps winning, and winning again, BYU and his fans will have to get used to hearing his name connected to other shows.

Get used to your beautiful dancing with other suitors.

That’s not to say it will lead to anything beyond a little flirtation.

But who knows?

This could lead to a violation of the code of honor.

You win, you push back and push back all the comers.

In college play, USC is the image of beauty.

What is BYU talking about now?

It’s much more appealing to a successful incumbent as the dollars keep piling up.

And as a newly invited member of the Big 12, the Cougars had better start paying their coach – their coaches – like that. The wealthy boosters around the program have long been willing to contribute to bigger coaching portfolios, but they should be allowed to dig deeper now, in combination with the extra money available for the school.

Coaching at BYU is no longer a church calling.

Not with the sniffling USC.

It’s a real job with real demands with real expectations with the necessary fair remuneration.

Sitake will not be the first choice for Trojans.

But even if he was, he wouldn’t – wouldn’t go – to SC or wherever, not if he keeps winning and the Cougars run their business the way they should, giving the man and his assistants what they have. earned, what they deserve, measured not by the standards of the past, but rather by the demands of the present.

GORDON MONSON hosts “The Big Show” with Jake Scott weekdays from 2pm to 7pm on 97.5 FM and 1280 AM The Zone.

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