The Chicago Bulls are in need of a new head coach, and it just might Fred Hoiberg of Iowa State that gets to come in for Tom Thibodeau who was fired after five seasons at the job.
Hoiberg used to play for the Bulls (1999-2003) and has turned down about a dozen offers from the NBA since taking over the head coaching job at Ames with the Cyclones in 2010. Iowa State have gone on to win 67.3% of their games including 55.7% in the Big 12, twice winning the conference championship. He’s also taken them to four consecutive NCAA tournament trips with one of them to the Sweet Sixteen.
Hoiberg, a big star for the Cyclones in the early 1990’s, has a very good connection with Gar Forman, the Bulls’ general manager, and the person who was trying the most to get rid of Thibodeau. There are many stories about who and what happened in Chicago but the simplest way to describe it is that the two sides, head coach and front office didn’t get a long, and it got uglier and uglier as time went by.
Forman was an assistant at Iowa State when Hoiberg was a player there. And Hoiberg has had a dream of coaching in the NBA for quite some time. Maybe this is the opportunity and team he’s been waiting for. He has even told a five-star recruit, Cheick Diallo, that his future with Iowa State is unclear, and that he can’t promise he’ll be even coaching them in 2015-2016, despite Iowa State projected to be a preseason top 10 team. Diallo, a consensus top-10 recruit in the 2015 class, committed April 28th to Kansas.
As for Thibodeau, he’ll find a job. His final fall in Chicago might have something to do with him being too much of an old-school guy, who pushes players too much, and forgets about spreading minutes, the effect of fatigue and maybe letting go a little bit. When the team was winning it was fine, but they never got past a point they were expected to.
When you think about it, Thibodeau would be one great college coach. He loves pushing players to the limit on and off the court. He won’t have to worry about tiring them out during games, rotations or someone watching him over his shoulder. It might be a tough idea to get used to at first, but maybe getting fired by the Bulls, despite the demand he’ll have in the league, is a chance to take a more benefiting career turn.