Reports Say Joe Susan Is The Next Bucknell Head Football Coach
by, 01-27-2010 at 05:13 PM (1333 Views)
Some big football news would also broke a bit early from Lewisburg today: that Rutgers assistant Joe Susan is [URL="http://www.nj.com/rutgersfootball/index.ssf/2010/01/rutgers_assistant_joe_susan_ex.html"]reportedly going to be named the next Bucknell head football coach at 6PM today[/URL]. The announcement of the hire concludes a delicate month-long dance after former head football coach Tim Landis [URL="http://www.bucknellbison.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/122409aaa.html"]accepted a coordinator position at San Jose State.[/URL]
But in taking their time, it sure seems like Bucknell got the right guy for the job.
For those of you that don't know, Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano is a former Bucknell coach, and Susan was one of his original assistants when he was hired eight years ago. It's hard not to see Susan as Schiano's right-hand man during the spectacular rise of the Scarlet Knight's program - and as recruiting coordinator, as well as tight ends coach and assistant, means he was the architect of the pipeline that has brought Rutgers from laughingstock to BCS contender. Why would Susan give that up?
[QUOTE]"I wanted to be a head coach again," said Susan, who is returning to the school that launched his coaching career in 1981. "You look at the average age of guys getting head jobs and the opportunities just get fewer and fewer. It's not easy leaving Rutgers. I'm so tied into the school. But this a great opportunity for me."[/QUOTE]
Not only does he have Rutgers ties and a resume that schools would drool over, he also has experience as a non-scholarship head coach, too: at Davidson in 2000, he guided the Wildcats to a 10-0 record and their only undefeated season in school history. (Granted, it was a I-AA independent schedule, but it did include five victories against I-AA opponents, including a 41-17 thrashing of Georgetown in their final year in the MAAC football conference.)
[URL="http://www.theblackurbantimes.com/2010/01/rutgers-coach-greg-schiano-might-not.html"]Schiano himself[/URL] talked about Bucknell's hire, too:
[QUOTE]“I’m going to miss Joe myself,” he said. “Joe did a lot of things over the years for me and when you work with someone that long and you know him as long as I have, there’s a lot of anticipation that occurs just through familiarity.
“I’m going to miss him because he’s a good friend as well as a good coach. I’m happy for him. [B][I]I think he’s the perfect guy for that job. I think he’s going to do a great job. He’s going to get that football program cranking and I’m going to enjoy watching them[/I][/B].”
“(Greg) has been very supportive about this,” said Susan. “They came to him as a resource for information on me. He understood how important it was to me to be a head coach again and what this opportunity meant for me.”[/QUOTE]
His [URL="http://www.scarletknights.com/football/coaches/susan.asp"]Rutgers bio[/URL] details his Bucknell coaching experience:
[QUOTE]Susan was offensive line coach at Bucknell from 1981-88, when he took on the added responsibility as associate head coach for two seasons with the Bison. During his tenure at Bucknell, he recruited Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano to play for the Bison. Susan also recruited offensive lineman Jay Butler, who is presently the Scarlet Knights' Assistant Director for Strength and Conditioning.[/QUOTE]
And add to this the[URL="http://boards.basketball-u.com/showtopic.php?tid/9856/tp/1/"] message board chatter,[/URL] where folks like "GMoney89" positvely gush about Susan's time in Lewisburg last time:
[QUOTE]I've known him since my days in Lewisburg and always thought of him as intelligent, cerebral coach. If you look at his coaching resume, all of the stops along the way have been with Academically minded institutions (even Rutgers, with a top API in BCS schools) so I don't think the "bigger" BCS challenge is in his future. I think the challenge to restore the Bison to respectability in the Patriot League is perfect for him.[/QUOTE]
All in all, it looks like a great hire for the Bison. With his contacts at Rutgers and his reputation as a recruiter (especially in New Jersey), Bucknell seems to have sent a message that they want a winning program. If there was any thought that the Bison might de-emphasize football or would be giving up competing in the Patriot League, it would seem that those thoughts should be laid to rest.