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UMaine team

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UMaine team

Postby bballnut » Wed May 21, 2008 6:01 pm

ABCD UMaine Lead [-]

Posts: 67
(05/08/08 8:36 AM)

I havn't really visted this site much since the end of HS hoops season so forgive me if this as already been discussed. I know a few players at UMaine are from maine and I am sure that a few of maines current highschool players are being looked at by Umaine. But what are peoples thoughts about the shake up at the end of last season? Did the girls who were leaving the team say why they were leaving? I know when Bloggett first got the head coaching job some people thought that she was going to be in over her head, Does anyone see this as a sign that maybe those people might have been right? And if she does struggle at UMaine does that tarnish her name at UMaine?

TheBigMan THE BLODGE! #1 [-]

Posts: 1593
(05/12/08 9:24 AM)
ABCD: "Did the girls who were leaving the team say why they were leaving? I know when Bloggett first got the head coaching job some people thought she was going to be in over her head. Does anyone see this as a sign that maybe those people might have been right? And if she does struggle at UMaine does that tarnish her name at UMaine?"

I've been biting my lip on this one for a long, long time and almost did not post this because Cindy Blodget was an excellent high school and college player - the best there ever was in Maine's history. At the time I heard Blodgett might take over the head UMaine position, I thought, "GREAT!" Like many, I had perceived Cindy as having a very humble, decent and sweet personality that could work well with young people and that her kind nature might actually serve as an 'added draw' to a school that already struggles with getting top national athletes. After all, I figured that there were so few coaches who possessed this rare quality…especially at the high paying and high steaks division one level.

Rumors surrounding Coach Blodgett's behavior at UMaine has got to be the most heart-breaking information I've received in my 16 years of following girls/women's basketball. And it was mostly Cindy Blodgett that got me hooked on girls/women's basketball to begin with. As a once very loyal fan, I am pretty upset about the whole thing! Rumor has it that Coach Blodgett (or, The Blodge) has turned out to be just as much of a tyrant as some of her coaching predecessors!

BigMan to Cindy Blodgett:
"Hey Blodge…
I know how tough it can be in the struggle and all…but could you lighten up just a little bit on the young ladies? I thought the revolution was over! After all, it's just women's basketball. JEEPERS CREEPERS! I'm aware that some people doubt your ability as a head coach, but that does not mean you have to go out there and way over do it, General George Patton! What in the heck happened to moderation?! Apparently, your 'Bobby Knight style' of coaching is not working. Try a new gig, or...go down as the biggest laughing stock in the history of UMaine coaches.

Maybe if your program were as good as Geno Auriama's is, you could afford to be a jerk. However, yours is not.
Sincerely, Your #1 Fan...

Last Edited By: TheBigMan 05/12/08 10:19 AM. Edited 5 times.
snowdancerky #2 [-]

Posts: 20
(05/12/08 12:42 PM)
Bigman, under most all situations I respect your opinion, and under all situations I respect your right to your opinion. But in this case, you are way, way off base,.

Your comments smack of the mindset of many people involved in sports in that the ladies should be treated differently than the men. You sound like your saying that the UMaine women can't stand on their own 2 feet and achieve success when faced with an over the top kind of coach.

What about Nolan Richardson from Arkansas, his men didn't develop the "40 minutes from hell" defense because he sat idly and silent in practice, What about Bobby Knight, would he have driven his teams to national titles with a totally different attitude? And how about Pat Summit?? Think she's not a tyrant on the practice court?

Holding Rousseau to a scholarship deal that she did not want to honor was a big mistake obviously, might have been Blodgett's mistake, or maybe it was a group goofup. That does not mean her style of coaching is a disaster, might be that some players don't like it, but in many cases "my way or the highway" works and works well.

I know of a certain D-3 coach in Maine, who came in and apparently cracked the whip, so hard that a good number of players did not come back to the team in her second year. She came from a D-1 background and made it clear she expects hard work from her players, just wait till you see what happens in year 3 and beyond.

"It's just women's basketball"??? I'm ashamed of you for that comment Bigman.

It takes time for a coach to pull a team together that can play for him/her, give her that time.

TheBigMan snowdancerky... #3 [-]

Posts: 1593
(05/12/08 2:45 PM)
snowdancerky: "It's just women's basketball"? I'm ashamed of you for that comment Bigman."
Why are you ashemed of me? I didn't hold a kid back from transferring, when she obviously didn't want to be at UMaine. Shoudn't Coach Blodgett be a little ashed as well?

snowdancerky: "It takes time for a coach to pull a team together that can play for him/her, give her that time."
Well, Maine didn't give Ann McInery that "time" now did they. So, how am I different?

Here's a few points I want to make regarding your post.

#1 Regarding your example of the D3 coach. I agree she will soon be successful at that level. But first of all, I heard she's not that bad as far coaching style is concerned. However, she was coached by a DI tyrant, which proves my point in #2. She is tough, and some players did leave, but she's a long way from dysfunctional.

#2 This is nothing more than learned behavior. I've seen this happen a thousand times. Some players can get the tyrants of all tyrants for a coach. The player swears that they would never coach that way if they ever get the opportunity. Then one day, they're in a head coaching position, and guess what? They immediately become the spitting image of what they used to hate! Talk about irony?!

#3 Tough coaches like legendary women coaches Pat Summit (Tennessee) and C.Vivian Stringer (Rutgers)...or mens coaches Nolan Richardson (Arkansas) or John Chaney (Temple) may had there moments. However, there players love(d) and respect(ed) them. Every summer coach Summit sets her players up with outstanding summer jobs(internships). She goes out of her way to make sure that her players get a quality education and graduates with a career awaiting them, be it professional basketball or other non athletic careers. Stringer does the same. These great coaches are role-models and master teachers of life for there players, who often come out of the inner-city, impoverished areas and have had no positive role-models in their lives.

The coaches you named are legendary coaches who built dynasties! Not a brand new coach, in a below average conference and at the bottom of that league, and at a school that has had trouble (historically) recruiting top quality athletes due to location. That's no comparison at all. You are comparing apples to oranges.

#4 I admit there is more than one way to skin a cat. And, I will admit that Bobby Knight's style, Gary Williams' style, and Kathy Inglese's style has served as a means to an end. A very successful end, at least at some point in the past. But why do you think Coach Knight finally got booted out of Indiana, even with his success? Or why Gary Williams and Coach Inglese were chased out of Boston College, eventhough they had great success in the past? I'll tell you why...over the top...dysfunctional...CRAZY!

But what about Coaches like Al Skinner (Men's coach at Boston College), Coach Vanderveer (Women's coach at Stanford) or Coach McGraw (Women's coach at Notre Dame). They seem to have been pretty successful over the years without resorting to the dysfunctional behavior of inimidating and demeaning players. I know for a fact that this does not happen in the Stanford Women's practices, or the Boston College Men's practices. I feel that there's a smarter way to attract players and be successful! It would serve Blodgett well to try to find a way to retain players first, and worry about Bobby Knight's style later.
Last Edited By: TheBigMan 05/13/08 10:30 AM. Edited 6 times.
Hoops22 #4 [-]

Posts: 98
(05/13/08 12:12 PM)

Do you know for a fact that Rousseau left because Blodgett is a 'tyrant' as you put it? Did she tell you that personally? Publicly she claims she left because D1 is too demanding for her major. If I remember correclty, she is a Biochemistry major. Probably one of the more difficult majors someone can take on. There are probably very few hard core science or engineering majors that find they are able to balance D1 sports and a full course load of 5 classes plus 2 labs each semester and maintain a high GPA. Hard to work in the lab when you are on the road all the time for away games. Lots of kids take summer classes to lighten their load during the school year so they can more easily meet the demands of their D1 sport. Unfortunately, the most technical classes required for certain majors often aren't offerred during the summer. And most kids don't want to give up their whole summer taking classes anyways.

Each student athlete has to decide how they are going to balance academics, sports, and any remaining social life (if any) while playing sports in college. I doubt the demands are any less at Stanford or any of the other schools as you stated in another post.. To help manage the overload, some kids take summer classes, some graduate a semester or two later than normal, some totally give up their social life to try to cram it into 4 years. Ms. Rousseau apparently decided that wasn't for her and a D2 program offerred better quality of life for her given the difficulty of her academic studies. I'm sure it's much easier to major in liberal arts, communciations, education (etc., etc.) and play D1 than to take on a challenging course of study like Biochemisty.

I don't think it's fair for you to get on here and blast Blodgett and the UMaine program for Ms. Rousseau leaving. I'm sure other D1 programs are just as demanding, if not more. In fact, I bet the more demanding programs actually correlate to more success. It's probably just more rewarding when your team is having success which makes all those sacrifices more worthwhile.

Whether or not an athlete should be allowed to back out on a scholarship is another debate altogether and I'll leave that one alone for now. But I think your logic that 'real students' will find other D1 programs less demanding is completely unsupported ( as you stated on another thread) . I suspect Ms. Rousseau would have encountered all the same challenges at any other D1 program while trying to major in Biochem. Perhaps that is her real reason for leaving, academic overload and not willing to make certain sacrifices, rather than your suggestion that Blodgett is a tryant.
Last Edited By: Hoops22 05/13/08 1:22 PM. Edited 6 times.
TheBigMan Hoops22 #5 [-]

Posts: 1593
(05/14/08 9:52 AM)
Yeah, Hoops. I just totally made that one up out of thin air. Ghee. What was I thinking.

Hoops22 #6 [-]

Posts: 98
(05/14/08 12:14 PM)
Just because one young person may think she's a tyrant doesn't neccessarily make it so. Perception is everything. I just think you are doing Coach Blodgett and UMaine a huge disservice by getting on here and publicly saying things like that. Other potential student athletes should make up their own minds. Hopefully kids don't see your post and take it as gospel and avoid UMaine as a result. Young people often have knee jerk reactions to difficult situations, and it is easy to blame the coach. It would be interesting to hear Coach Blodgett's side. Hopefully you did that before you reached your conclusion. There's 2 sides to every story.

Last Edited By: Hoops22 05/14/08 12:29 PM. Edited 2 times.
mbr2 #7 [-]

Posts: 2430
(05/14/08 1:48 PM)
I know one thing that did not settle well with a lot of people was the university not granted Emily her release. If that decision affects recruiting than they have no one but themselves to blame.

Hoops22 #8 [-]

Posts: 98
(05/14/08 1:58 PM)
The discussion at this point is about whether or not coach Blodgett was a 'tryant' causing Emily to want to leave in the first place. I agree the refusal to grant a release is a problem in terms of recruiting, but that came after the fact that she chose to leave and is a separate issue. A tyrant coaching style is what I am questioning as being an appropriate label for coach Blodgett. If kids don't want to go to UMaine because they are afraid they can't get a release is a differnt issue than not wanting to go because they think Blodgett is a horrible crazy tyrant. I'm not sure it's fair for people to give her that reputation because of this one incident.

Last Edited By: Hoops22 05/14/08 2:21 PM. Edited 1 times.
mbr2 #9 [-]

Posts: 2430
(05/14/08 2:20 PM)
Based on not being released could, in some peoples eyes, catagorize her as a tyrant and thus believe that is how she coached. I do not know if that is the case but certainly could lead to speculation.

Dman Blodgett #10 [-]

Posts: 13
(05/16/08 4:32 PM)
I don't know why everyone is making such a big deal about this. It was inevitable you had players recruited by one coach with a certain philosophy and she is no longer there. Cindy has a right to coach the way she sees fit just like each teacher they hire can teach a certain way that does not work for each student and they end up failing.......it is in a way a job for the players they are getting value in a free education at 20k per year. Cindy is also getting paid to perform. Let her, as Bill Parcells would say, buy the groceries and see what happens. I went and watched a few games this year and I saw young women working hard as a unit, why some are willing and others aren't has to do with a lot of variables. We are not at the practices, in the dorms, and on campus. I played sports not nearly as much as today's youth and I was burned out......a lot of B-ball can make you better but it can also push you over the edge.
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Joined: Mon May 05, 2008 9:20 am

Re: UMaine team

Postby bowdoin84 » Thu May 22, 2008 3:35 pm

The change in boards has really messed me up.......thanks for transferring this over, bball nut, so those who already moved over could see it.

I'm really surprised at those who are dumping on Blodgett. Perhaps it goes with the territory, but why wouldn't she be expected and allowed to assert her own authority and make the inevitable mistakes? Is it a revelation to anyone that she has a driven personality?? Now is the time for her to reflect and learn, and make adjustments. Some of the players have left, some of them clearly not happy, but what about those who are staying? I don't see anyone on here talking about Tanna Ross and how her rookie season went. Please focus on the positives. There's talent and heart there, and more on the way. Give Blodgett some breathing room and let her grow up before you feed her to the wolves.
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Re: UMaine team

Postby mainejeff » Thu May 22, 2008 11:03 pm

Agreed bowdoin84.

By the way.......So. Brittany Boser is a chemical engineering major with a 3.0+ GPA. I guess that there are some players that can handle their academics, basketball and social life.

BigMan needs to find a new hobby......maybe he can stalk the new BC coach or something.
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Re: UMaine team

Postby ABCD » Mon May 26, 2008 11:44 am

How many players did end up leaving? And if she dosen't build a program that can compete how long do you think she has before pressure really starts to build? How would you like to be the person who fires the most famous player in the schools history..
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Re: UMaine team

Postby SeaDogsFan » Mon May 26, 2008 1:32 pm

Why are we discussing UMaine after their current athletic season like they matter?
"Brace yourself everyone. Here come the uneducated rants of fans that know what really happened but choose to revel in the obserdity" ~ ballerdad
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Re: UMaine team

Postby mainejeff » Tue May 27, 2008 1:39 pm

SeaDogsFan wrote:Why are we discussing UMaine after their current athletic season like they matter?

Because they DO matter. Some people actually DO care about the program despite the atrocious seasons that every sport had.

Fire Blake James. He is the one constant that every program has in common. Under his regime, the entire athletic program has faltered.
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Re: UMaine team

Postby mainejeff » Tue May 27, 2008 1:44 pm

ABCD wrote:How many players did end up leaving? And if she dosen't build a program that can compete how long do you think she has before pressure really starts to build? How would you like to be the person who fires the most famous player in the schools history..

4 players left the program: Emily Rousseau, Magdala Johnson, Brittany Bowen, and Sandra Vaitkute (sp?).

I say that she gets at least 2.....maybe 3 more seasons to show real signs of progress. What I can't understand is why Jack Cosgrove gets 15 seasons and counting even though his program has been regressing and losing......while there is already pressure on Blodgett to succeed after only 1 season......???? Sexism?.....Hypocrisy?........I don't quite understand.
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Re: UMaine team

Postby ccow » Tue May 27, 2008 4:43 pm

Can we count all the players that left since Macinerny left including players that were supposed to go to Maine:

1. Magdala Johnson
2. Emily Rousseau
3. Sandra Vaitkute
4. Whitney Morrow
5. Abby Greene
6. Tiffany Colon
7. Kelsey Hogan
8. Brittany Bowen
9. Tonya Young

I think that is everyone- let me know if I am missing someone

That is more players that were on the bench at the end of Maine's season...
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Re: UMaine team

Postby bowdoin84 » Wed May 28, 2008 8:34 am

I guess if you set the bar as high as Blodgett did as a player there will always be those who want nothing more than to see you knocked down. As a coach, she's being held to similarly high expectations. People forget that her success as a player and student was built on a core of hard work and determination. I honestly don't think people expected her to be a harda$$. Just because they're women doesn't mean it will be all sugar and spice and everything nice. College basketball is a tough business. Blodgett has to lay the groundwork to win and she's known it from day one. She needs to be allowed to demand more from these players without people coming unglued about how she's ruining young lives. They chose to be there and need to make the most of the opportunity or move on. A first year coach makes mistakes. Some learn to lighten up as they gain experience and some learn to run things a little tighter because trying to be every player's best friend doesn't work. Any player who is spending more time whining about how hard it is than they are in the gym chose the wrong program.
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Re: UMaine team

Postby localbballfan » Wed May 28, 2008 9:21 am

I believe that most of the extra pressure that is being put upon Coach Blodgett is that many people believe she is the same person she was when she was at UMaine and even when she was in Clinton, ME.

If you talk to her or listen to her speak, she is no longer the shy, young lady she was back in her high school and college playing days - she has seen much more of the world than most people from Maine will ever see. She has a clear objective of what she wants out of her kids. Some share in her beliefs, some may not. Those that do not are not going to be in her program very long. Plain and simple. Do you think Pat Summit or Geno Auriema put up with kids that don't share their goals and their beliefs? That was rhetorical because we all know the answer. And before you say, "how can you compare those two coaches to Coach Blodgett," I am not. All I am saying is that Division I basketball is highly competitive and the coaches' careers are at stake. They are not going to pander to college students when their careers are on the line. Coach Blodgett is no exception.

I also believe there is still a lot of jealousy out there from the success that Coach Blodgett had as a player. As many fans as she has, the boisterous minority would love to find holes in the armor of Cindy Blodgett - the best basketball player the state has ever seen. Maine is very parochial and there are some that still see Cindy as the young girl that didn't allow several good Class A schools win it all during her 4 year reign. Those people are the first in line to let Coach Blodgett know of their disapproval and are looking forward to watching her struggle. It's just a fact, and she is well aware of that fact.

In talking with her both back then and now, I can assure you that she is confident in what she believes. She has a clear vision of what she wants from her progam and her players. She wants "gym rats." Kids that can't wait to get in the gym and kids you have to drag out of the gym. Not just to play pickup games, but to take 300 shots in a session. To work on one dribble moves and two dribble moves. To work on their range. To work on their free throws. To work on their ball handling. To get stronger and quicker. Not because they are being told to, but because they want to - because they want to get better and find out just how good they could be.

She is going to need at least 2 more seasons to truly have her stamp put on this program. I know that she wants it to happen much sooner. She cannot stand to lose. With her there are no moral victories. None of us know, other than maybe a very select few (Matt Rossignol, Andy Bedard, and a few others) that have come close to achieving what Cindy did, is the drive and the passion and the dedication it takes to be great. She is going to be demanding. She should be. She is the coach of the only DI program in the state. She should expect the best from her players and her players, hopefully, will be willing to give it. If her players do not, that is fine. There are other avenues for them to pursue that would be better fits and that is great.

Let's see where the program is in 2 years. I have a feeling Coach Blodgett is going to figure this out and make UMaine a force to be reckoned with in this conference. She won't accept anything else. It is not in her nature.
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