Do You Prefer an Offensive- or Defensive-Minded Head Coach? Does It Even Matter?

Do You Prefer an Offensive- or Defensive-Minded Head Coach? Does It Even Matter?

One of the statements we keep reading and hearing as the
Eagles’ head-coaching search drags on is a seemingly large portion of the fan
base wants a “defensive-minded head coach.” Recently, some of my brethren were
having this discussion on Twitter, going so far as to break down how many of
each won Super Bowls in the past decade.

It’s an interesting topic, in that obviously it can be
debated and almost quantified to a certain extent. But then ultimately, does it
really make a difference either way?

This is an aspect of the Eagles’ hunt that does not
preoccupy me in the least, because think about it. An offensive-minded head
coach is going to hire a defensive coordinator to run his defense, and a
defensive-minded head coach is going to hire an offensive coordinator to run
his offense.

What you’re essentially doing is applying overriding
philosophies to candidates based on a position they currently hold.

Bringing in a defensive coordinator to become the Eagles’ next
head coach does not automatically mean Jeff Lurie would be hiring somebody who
believes in a three-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust run-oriented attack. For all we
know, that particular defensive coach is going to want a strong-minded offensive
coordinator who will throw the ball all over the field on first, second, and third
downs because of some league trend. What is being done on the other side of the ball may even boil down to
something so simple as who was willing to take the job.

It has a tendency not to work out how you think it will
at all.

Perhaps the prime example is Brian Billick, who won a
championship as head coach of the Baltimore Ravens in 2000. Because that team
had one of the worst offenses in Super Bowl history, but also one of the strongest defenses ever, people tend to forget
Billick actually got the job based on his work as the offensive coordinator for the
Minnesota Vikings.

Or look at last year’s Super Bowl. Bill Belichick was once a
defensive coach, but the Patriots have developed into an offensive powerhouse through
the years, while Tom Coughlin was an offensive coach, and the Giants’ pass rush
especially is often billed first for their success.

The Eagles shouldn’t be looking for somebody based on
whether he coaches offense or defense, because somebody winds up coaching
offense, and somebody else winds up coaching defense, and vice versa. It simply
isn’t something to get hung up about.

What they’re looking for is a coach who can lead a team, a
coach with a plan. Do you really care whether it’s an offensive or defensive
coordinator?

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Penn falls to hot-shooting George Mason

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Penn Athletics

Penn falls to hot-shooting George Mason

PHILADELPHIA -- Jalen Jenkins scored 22 points and grabbed six rebounds to help lead George Mason over Penn 79-60 on Saturday.

Jenkins was 9 of 11 from the field and hit all four of his free throws for the Patriots (8-3), who have won seven straight. Marquise Moore added 17 points and led the team with 16 rebounds -- his eighth double-double this season -- along with 10 assists. Otis Livingston II had 13 points.

Jenkins sank two jumpers and a layup and Jaire Grayer hit a 3-pointer as part of a 13-0 run late in the second period that gave the Patriots a 70-55 lead with 3:18 remaining.

George Mason trailed 44-40 early in the second. Livingston and Karmari Newman sank 3-pointers and Moore drained a layup midway that put the Patriots back on top, 55-48, with 10:39 to play.

Matt Howard scored 15 points with seven rebounds for the Quakers (3-5).

La Salle keeps things close, ultimately falls to Georgetown

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USA Today Images

La Salle keeps things close, ultimately falls to Georgetown

MIAMI -- L.J. Peak scored 24 points, Rodney Pryor added 19 and Georgetown closed with a flourish to beat La Salle 93-78 on Saturday in the Hoophall Miami Invitational.

It was tied at 67 with 8:44 left, before the Hoyas finished on a 26-11 run.

Jessie Govan scored 19 points and Jagan Mosely had 14 for the Hoyas (6-4), who won their fourth straight. Georgetown shot 53 percent for the game and 58 percent from 3-point range.

Jordan Price scored 23 points for La Salle (4-4), which got 19 more from B.J. Johnson and 10 from Pookie Powell. The Explorers were outscored 36-22 from the line, getting there 10 fewer times than Georgetown.

It was a homecoming for Hoyas reserve center Trey Mourning, whose father Alonzo Mourning is one of two players -- soon to be three, when Shaquille O'Neal gets added to the list this month -- to have his number retired by the Miami Heat.

The younger Mourning wears No. 33, just like his dad did at Georgetown and for the Heat, and used to work at the arena as a Heat ballboy. He got into the game for the final 23.2 seconds, as the Hoyas ran out the clock.