OT: The tale of two five-star recruits who played in Mark D’Onofrio’s defense at Miami

(Randy ) #21

D’Onofrio’s bend but don’t break defense along with Briles’ offense was a match made in Hades.

(Sam) #22

Agree. I wanted D’Onofrio fired and by the time the coordinator situation got so screwed up, I felt we needed to move on from Applewhite. Some of the invective about them is over the top. Both got dealt a really tough hand about 2/3rd of the way through last season. But no point dwelling on the past. I think most everyone is thrilled Holgorsen is here and rightfully so.


Sam, How is that rediculous? Would you trust a guy (for advise) that you beat for a coveted position??? Sam, we dont know what people will do. If I am Applewhite, I am not asking anyone a question about who would you recommend me hire as a D Coordinator after I won head coach spot over that person. BTW, Applewhite’s choice ended up being a failure. Yes, I say it was to spite Applewhite after the hiring. Why coach No D of all coaches???

(Sam) #24

Okay, Orlando recommended D’Onofrio because he was just filled with spite over not getting the job and wanted to stick it to Applewhite. :thinking:

We all see the world in our own way.

(Patrick) #25

I think it probably had more to do with Orlando not really having an extensive list of assistants of his own.

I do wonder if Orlando specifically recommended D’Onofrio or if Applewhite got D’Onofrio’s letters, went to Orlando about him, and Orlando told him that he was a good coach and ran the same system. Orlando might have even thrown in that he probably would have hired D’Onofrio if he got the job; I imagine they might have known each other as both were from the NorthEast.

In the end, it’s still Applewhite’s call to make and the whole thing didn’t work out. The whole process after Herman left was adobe poorly and hopefully our admin learned from that. Hopefully, we don’t have to worry about it again for a long time.

(Randy ) #26

I’ve always wondered what Orlando’s recommendation really looked like. In any event, I agree that it doesn’t excuse the hiring.

(Sam) #27

That’s my understanding, that Orlando said he would have hired D’Onofrio. But it’s now ancient history and at this point becoming grist for fans to confirm their biases. Bottom line is he didn’t work out for any number of reasons, and we’re in a better place.

(PMM) #28

I can almost guarantee you that if CTO had gotten the job and hired Denfrio, he would NOT have let him run the scheme he ran.

But, like you say, a large mistake was made… now move on.

(Larry) #29

My biggest issue is that CMA appears to never have spent the time and effort to research and prepare a list of qualified candidates for his coaching positions. In my professional experience as you move up the ladder of your profession you develop contacts and begin to evaluate those contact’s abilities for future development/employment. IMO, Defensive Coordinator would be one of the most crucial hires, thus demanding a significant amount of time and effort be spent finding a good, qualified one who fits my philosophy. Especially if defense is my weakness. The same with the Brian Johnson hiring. Did he really spend the time researching which OC matched his philosophy and game planning? Even if CMA couldn’t hire Briles his first year, wouldn’t he want a top quality alternate OC. Was BJ a poor quality OC or did CMA not hire the right guy for his (CMA’s) philosophy and lack of experience.
In my 45 years of professional experience I’ve seen a number of “potential” leaders who are happy with doing less than their best and who aren’t committed to what it takes to have their organization/campus reach their peak. It’s my opinion that CMA was not committed to putting for the effort for success as a head coach vs doing the job as head coach. Maybe he didn’t understand what it would take to be successful as HC. I would have thought his past exposure to top coaches would have shown him but perhaps he didn’t have that dedication. In a few years we can look again at his career, if we want, to see if I’m wrong. I wish him happiness and the best in his future.

(PMM) #30

I think AppleBoy was in a state of shock that he got the job… and knew inside that he was in over his head.

(CoogDentist) #31

Ya I totally agree that dude or group of guys were relentless at cut down any detractors. I wonder if they will own up to their stupidity.

(PMM) #32

Maybe it was AppleBoy…posting :sunglasses:


My point is, we will never know. There are people out there that will do everything they can to hurt you if they couldnt get the very same thing you got. Orlando was allegedly connected, which I assume he knew of more guys that coach defense. And I am quite sure he was well aware of Coach No D’s schemes and how ineffective it was at Miami.

If I knew someone was horrible for a certain position, why would I recommend that guy to you for the perfect hire?

(srassen7) #34

Its wild that in 2010 D’Onofrio basically had the inside track to take over for Al Golden at Temple and by all accounts was a good DC there, to now probably being lucky to get an off-field analyst job like his old boss just did.

(Sam) #35

[quote=“ddkately, post:33, topic:18978, full:true”]And I am quite sure he was well aware of Coach No D’s schemes and how ineffective it was at Miami.

Like finishing #14 in total defense? #37 in scoring defense? Sounds pretty effective to me. I think Miami fell off under Coker, Shannon, and Golden because they quit getting many of the top players in South Florida as they had been doing in the 90s. I also think discipline became a big issue there.

D’Onofrio is not in the same league as Brent Venables or Dave Aranda, but I think he’s a competent DC who got dealt a bad hand this season due to injuries and the offense we ran. It doesn’t make sense that we played pretty good defense in ‘17 with D’Onofrio and then he got stupid in between seasons. We had little depth this past year, yet we were #129 in TOP because of our hurry-up, quick strike offense. Our opponents were on the field close to a quarter more than we were. That’s tough. But we were in the top 20 in turnovers gained. I supported his firing, but I felt we needed to move on, not that a guy who had coordinated successful defenses at Temple, UM (it is true that they were more mediocre than good), and UH had suddenly become clueless. I get that my opinion isn’t popular and that fans will always point to coaching when things don’t go well. That’s fine. In some cases it’s justified. I think that often gets overdone by casual fans who really don’t know. But that’s JMHO.

(PMM) #36

It is always about coaching. That is why winning coaches win. I don’t really care if he is or isn’t a good coach. While he was here, our defense was headed in the wrong direction.

AppleBoy was the main cause. He never had a real game plan for the entire team.

He was always lost in the wilderness.

They are now someone else’s problem.

(Brian C) #37

where in manster?

(Sam) #38

Saying it’s always about players would be more accurate. Give Alabama A&M’s staff Alabama’s roster, and they’re still going to have a great season. We did have a good defense in 2017. We didn’t in '18 for any number of reasons, and the chief culprit was not “bad coaching.” That’s what fans who don’t know any better always say. That doesn’t mean coaching doesn’t matter. I think there are about 10-15% who really make a difference in their program’s success. I’d include coaches such as Bill Snyder, Gary Patterson, and Mike Leach in that group. I consider Holgorsen just inside or outside that 15%. With some exceptions the rest of the coaching fraternity is somewhere in the great middle. Like I said, I have my opinion, and I’ve been watching college football long enough that it won’t change.

(srassen7) #39

I don’t entirely agree with this, but I don’t entirely disagree either.

Specifically, I think last year’s offense operating at absurd tempo and some bad injury luck were big contributing factors. When you give your opponent more possessions, they’re going to score more points… not rocket science.

(PMM) #40

Of course players matter…but analyzing players and recruiting them is a YUGE part of coaching. Possibly the biggest part.

Let’s face it Herman and to a much lesser extend MA won with Levine players. Herman and MA didn’t recruit very well (IMHO) and we saw the results when combined with “deer in the headlight” coaching techniques.

I respect you opinions, but have to disagree in some areas…one of them being MA and his “staff” They were bad.