Goodbye Kristy Curry, Lubbock Didn’t Deserve You
You see what I did with that headline there? It can be taken two ways. You could be a jerk and think I''m saying "good riddance", but I'm actually not. Kristy Curry was a great coach filled with class and poise and we were lucky to have her. If you read the sports blogs though, you'll see some incredibly hateful comments. More after the jump.
Coach Kristy Curry just finished taking the Lady Raiders back to the NCAA tournament, a place where few get to go. She also coached a team with the 11th highest attendance in the nation. She beat #1 Baylor at a time when they were supposedly "unbeatable". I could heap accolades and accolades on her, but it was her class and poise that impressed me. Her tenure at Tech aged her in dog years, from ungrateful fans to having to coach in the shadow of Marsha Sharp, I can't believe she didn't leave earlier.
In my opinion, Texas Tech won it's NCAA championship in women's basketball due to two reasons, the lack of focus on women's sports in other programs at the time, and the once in a lifetime luck of having a near hometown talent, Sheryl Swoops on the the team. Swoops was just one of those players who not only was off the hook, she made everybody around her seem better.
When it comes to sports, coaching is almost second to recruiting. We are NEVER going to get grade "A" talent here. We may get some strong "B's" that a good coach can turn into an "A", but while they do that, the coaches in the more attractive towns are going to make that grade "A" talent better too. In short, Lubbock doesn't have the quality of life to even get a second glance from most athletes. I don't want to totally bang on my town, but our nightlife, arts and educational opportunities (like museums and large companies with internship programs) are weak.
Lubbock has chosen to make "sports" it's focus for many moons, yet all it has to offer for athletes is college sports. We can't even field minor league teams in hopes that the athletes can continue their passions even for fun. But enough of all of this.
Ms. Curry wasn't a fair weathered friend like Tommy Tuberville. She wasn't here to mend her reputation like Bob Knight (or that other Men's Basketball coach that was here for about a day and half). She was a great leader, a genuinely awesome person, and a coach who won despite the fact that she had to recruit to Lubbock (I mean seriously, can you imagine ANY 19 year old girl who's DREAM it is to live in Lubbock?).
Some Tech fans think this move is a "step down" for Curry. I guess they haven't checked out the campus at the University of Alabama. It's bordered on one side by and actual river and the paths are all tree lined. It's a gorgeous green place with a museum of natural history and art galleries on premises. It's what I've been pointing to in this blog all along "quality of life".
So I wish Ms. Curry well. I hope she knows that not everyone in Lubbock is a hateful, classless, fair weather fan/boo-bird. Some of us really appreciate the class and dignity she added to Texas Tech sports. She will be missed.