UNLV, Chris Beard Mess

By: Stephen Nover     Date: Apr 17, 2016

Put off hiring a college basketball coach for a week and make a million dollars. That's a formula UNLV accidentally stumbled upon with Chris Beard. Beard is one of those slimy Bobby Petrinoish kind of coaches whose word doesn't mean anything. UNLV looks bad on this, but Beard shouldn't emerge from this fiasco untainted. Beard gets his dream job of coaching Texas Tech - unless the Washington Wizards come calling. UNLV gets a one million dollar buyout, but its president and athletic director take hits for coming across as bungling amateurs, which they are. It has to be a serious blow, too, prestige-wise when someone chooses Lubbock over Las Vegas. Now, instead of trying to get back in the batter's box and hit a home run, UNLV settles for a guy it initially rejected - New Mexico State coach Marvin Menzies. He's compiled an excellent record at New Mexico State. Menzies also has been in Las Cruces for nine years leaving you to wonder if he has star potential why hadn't he been hired to coach at a more prestigious conference than the Western Athletic Conference before now? George Karl sure wasn't a good fit for the Sacramento Kings. But he could have been an interesting choice for UNLV. We'll never know, though. Former Rebel coach David Rice is looking real good about now. Sure Rice, who was fired shortly after conference play began at the urging of influential boosters, wasn't much of a game coach. But he was a great recruiter, ran a clean program - something extremely rare at UNLV - and was a class act. Jerry Tarkanian could be rolling around in his grave realizing that UNLV's basketball program is headed toward being as bad as its football program. That's not worth a million dollars.

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