November 6, 2007
With the news that former US Men's National Team head coach Bruce Arena resigning as the head coach and sporting director with the NY Red Bulls, most of the talk is what does this mean for Arena and where are the Red Bulls going in the future.
For me, the question is now about whether the Rochester Rhinos will make a bold move and try and get things rolling in the right direction after fumbling along the past two seasons during the transition from Frontier Field to PAETEC Park.
It is not a secret that many Rhinos fans are not overly thrilled with the style of play that the Rhinos have employed during head coach Laurie Calloway's three year tenure with the club. The term "Punt and Pray" has been used all too frequently of late. And one has to wonder about how much Calloway's abilities to recruit players and mesh them into a squad has affected the less than stellar attendance at PAETEC Park.
Calloway's proponents will point to his team making the USL 1st Division final in only his second year with the club. And while Calloway would certainly be judged in a different light by some (or most) fans if his club had been on the winning end of that 3-0 loss to the Vancouver Whitecaps, the truth is that the team didn't win that huge match up at PAETEC Park.
So what does Bruce Arena resigning and Laurie Calloway have to do with each other? Well, the Rhinos almost hired John Harkes as the man to replace Pat Ercoli, but the deal fell apart when the Rhinos were unwilling to meet Harkes' asking price. With Arena's resignation, it would appear that Harkes is looking for a job.
I know it would take a major financial commitment to pay Calloway to no longer be the Rhinos head coach and then they would have to meet Harkes' asking price as well. But, if the Rhinos want to take a step to regain their former glory, this is a move that would send shockwaves through the local soccer community and perhaps the entire USL.
Virgil is credited with the motto, "Audentes Fortunas Juvat," a maxim most commonly translated as "Fortune Favors the Bold." The question now is how bold with the Rhinos be this off season?
Other News & Notes:
- The KC Wizards will be calling a minor league baseball stadium with a capacity fo 10,000 home for the next two years. I thought that MLS wouldn't allow a team to share a home with a minor league baseball team? Hmmmmmm
- The LA Times has a bunch of good rumors on who the next LA Galaxy coach will be. The interesting part is how many of the names that were thrown around for the US Men's National Team job after Arena was let go are back in circulation with Beckham on the squad.
- DC United's Josh Gros may see his young career cut short due to head injuries.
- One of my favorite soccer blogs, This Is American Soccer, has gotten a face lift. And I really like what Adam's done with the place.
The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author, and not necessarily those of the Rochester Rhinos or SoccerSam.com. Feel free to send any comments or complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org. James promises to read (but not to respond) to all of them.