University of Arizona athletic director Greg Byrne and his basketball coach sat side by side to tell the public that all is well with the Wildcat basketball program.
Sean Miller looked and sounded like a man who was at peace with his decision and confident it would be the right decision for years to come.
Was it enough?
Or maybe it was family therapy with Miller and Byrne as parents and the fans as children.
(Or maybe we should just move on before the simile gets weirder than it already is.)
Sean Miller spent the half hour session saying everything you would want to hear from a guy who flirted with another relationship before recommitting to his current partner.
He admitted what he did:
“It was an opportunity that I really felt in the best interest of our own family and myself to at least pause and consider.”
“I paused and considered for 40 hours in total.”
He explained what he didn’t do:
“It wasn’t my intention to leverage Greg Byrne. Greg and I have had ongoing conversations…really about one thing… What is it that we can do to continue to compete to be the best we can?”
“We’re trying to do the best we can together. Period.”
He apologized to the fans:
“I feel bad that I caused any heartache in my brief time. That was not my intention.”
He said it won’t happen again:
“Sometimes if you do take a moment to consider an opportunity it really can strengthen your resolve in the place that you’re at being perfect for you.”
“I’m not that guy that is going to do this next spring, and the spring after.”
He professed his undying love with many compliments:
“I’m here for the long haul, unconditionally.”
“I love being here. I think we have the greatest fans in the world.”
“What it does confirm is the love affair that exists between so many people and our basketball program and this university.”
“The (job) that I love the most is this one.”
I found it very interesting that Miller was so calm during the press conference. He could have lashed out at reporters or internet types for all the inaccurate information. Instead he said he understood that people were just trying to do their jobs at a very fast pace.
It didn’t seem like an act or an attempt to make something appear less serious than it was. Both guys seemed comfortable and sincere.
Miller understands how things work today. He realizes that stories go from 0-to-60 in two-tenths of a nanosecond because of this tweet-from-your-seat society. He gets that We The People run to the nearest cliff at the first hint of bad news.
So…do you believe him? The 2011 team’s motto was “All In.” Are you all-in with Sean Miller?
I’m trying to be. I want to be. But I know I’ll still be nervous the next time a program with more than one national championship starts a job search.
I can’t help it. The events on and following Mar. 26, 2005 have made me an insecure basketball fan. I keep expecting the other high-top shoe to drop.
Who were you talking to? Are their fans prettier than us? Does this Hassan Adams jersey make me look fat?
But I will say this: Miller’s words on Monday and his interaction with Byrne have me confident the Marylands of the world don’t have a chance. If Sean Miller leaves Arizona in his prime it’ll be for a really incredible situation. What more can any of us ask of a sports coach?
Sleep well, kids. The marriage is still strong.
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