Karma Hits Raymond

Karma can be an ugly thing.  Some believe in it, others don’t.  Whether you do or not one has to agree things sometimes happen for a reason.  Take the University of Pittsburgh coaching position.

Two weeks ago it was discussed coaches leaving a school after only 1-2 years at their previous job.  Michael Raymond was the prime question mark as he left Miami of Ohio for Pittsburgh after only two years in Oxford.  Karma or not, Raymond is now out of a job.

In one month, Raymond went from Mid American conference Coach of the Year, finishing 9-4 and leading Miami to the GoDaddy.com bowl game this year on January 6th.  Raymond will not be coaching that game, or any other in the near future as it turns out.

Raymond accepted the Pittsburgh job on December 16th, leaving Miami of Ohio high and dry for their bowl game.  Then, over the weekend, Raymond was arrested in Indiana for a felony domestic battery in the presence of a minor and released on $1000 bond.  Raymond said the arrest was uncalled for and would be ironed out soon.

However Pittsburgh didn’t wait.  School Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg announced New Year’s day the firing of Raymond “immediately” and the search for a new head coach would begin again.  “This is a matter of real regret for the many people at Pitt who had looked forward to working with him,” Nordenberg said. “However, head coaches are among the university’s most visible representatives and are expected to maintain high standards of personal conduct and to avoid situations that might reflect negatively on the university.”

The news of Raymond’s firing was welcomed by fans and alumni, who weren’t happy with the hire anyway by Athletic Director Steve Pederson.  Pederson, who had asked previous head coach Dave Wannstedt to resign rather than be fired, said at the hiring of Raymond, “He is a man of integrity and character and will be a true inspirational leader for our football team.”  Pederson tried to induce many players who wanted Wannstedt retained by letting them know Raymond would be a role model for them.  One wonders what Pederson thinks now.

Pederson, in his second tenure as Pittsburgh Athletic Director, has a checkered past of selecting Football coaches.  As the AD in Nebraska, be hired Bill Callahan instead of the highly popular Bo Pellini.  That hiring turned out to be the trigger to ouster Pederson in favor of Tom Osborne.  Osborne then let Callahan go and hired Pellini.  Nordenberg did give Pederson a  vote of confidence, stating his job still has his full support.

Raymond never had the chance to take over the reigns of the job in Pittsburgh.  But because of his hiring, several of the 18 players Wannstedt recruited and had given verbal intent to come to Pitt, retracted and will be going elsewhere.  Michigan State assistant coach Don Treadwell was hired over the weekend to take Raymond’s job in Miami.

One month is all it took and Raymond’s career might be over.  From head coach of one team to another and then no job at all.  Karma is a serious thing.

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