Friday, December 9, 2011

Northern Arizona Coach Mike Adras Resigns

In the most shocking news of the season, Northern Arizona Head Coach Mike Adras has resigned his post, per the NAU website.

Adras was in his 13th season at Flagstaff, has 193 career victories, and was one of the most respected coaches in the Big Sky. His team has struggled this year with a very young squad, but with his track record I could not imagine that had a part in his departure. From all accounts, this came a bit out of left field, and I don't know of anyone (other than those involved) that have an explanation for the sudden departure.

Curiously, none of his assistants were named as interim head coach, which I am sure will not sit very well with them. Dave Brown will be the interim head coach. Brown is the current radio commentator for NAU.

Athletics director Jim Fallis announced that Dave Brown, a long-time NAU employee, will serve as interim head coach while a search for a permanent replacement is conducted.

"It's important to maintain stability in the program, and I'm confident in Dave's abilities," Fallis said.

Brown is a member of the NAU Athletics Hall of Fame and former head coach of the NAU's women's basketball team and Yavapai College men's team.
Much more to follow I am sure, and for now we wish Coach Adras the best. A search for a new permanent head coach will begin immediately, according to NAU.

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  1. Unless there is something odd going on in Flagstaff, Adras should get another job, a better job in 5 minutes. Look what he did at NAU! That is not a higly sought after DI job...

  2. I have absolutely no idea at this point, but I have to think it would have something to do with Adras, maybe in his personal life? He is a good coach and has a good track record, I couldn't imagine he got forced out or anything like that. It will be interesting once more details emerge.

  3. This is odd, especially that none of the assistant coaches were given the interim "tag." It makes you wonder if there weren't some internal problems, like a player "revolt" or something.

    Very odd.

  4. A former player who was dismissed from the team decided to get even making outlandish claims of physical abuse knowing said claims will now hold water inlight of the recent Penn State claims. Outrageous! The university was quick with the trigger not wanting any scandals floating around. With further investigation, I believe they could find this claim just as bogus as it sounds. I wish Adras the best of luck and wish the university would pull their head out.

  5. Disgruntled Alum -
    Really? Come on.....really? I put absolutely nothing past anyone on this blue orb floating around in space but this sounds insane. Mitch Strohman may be in a tough spot during tonight's game. If he takes texts (lumberjacktalk) during the game will any of them be about the game itself? Gotta give this all some time and see if anything more comes to light. Once again, Disgruntled Alum......really? -MTJack

  6. Those are rumors I have not heard, but I would really hope they are not true. That would make for a very sad situation if he was forced out based on any untrue allegations. Hopefully the truth about all of this (either way) will eventually come to light.

  7. Mike Adras is an old school type of coach who treated his players and staff with the utmost disrespect in an attempt to instill fear into them to get them to perform. In an era where Brad Stevens and Shaka Smart are succeeding with motivational techniques through communication and respect, the military style of coaching just isn't acceptable in this era. Coaches will be held accountable for abusing athletes and staff and this is exactly what happened with Adras. Out with the old, in with the new.

  8. It's funny that an intelligent person could believe a former athlete has the power to bring Mr. Wonderful to his knees. If something wasn't going on or isn't going on, why would a Division 1 successful coach willingly resign to pursue other opportunities. Why would he quit on his team mid season? Maybe, just maybe, there is a reason for him leaving. Maybe they had enough to fire him but were gracious enough to let him resign.

    Unfortunately, no one can speak, not the University, not the athletes, and not whomever or whatever brought down the formerly untouchable Mr. Adras because no one wants to get wrapped up in litigation. Realistically, no single person or event could have gotten a Coach of 20 years removed unless he did something wrong.

  9. Dear Anonymous -

    You sound like you have a axe to grind over this? I don't doubt that an intense personality like Adras could "cross that line". I also don't doubt that some college athlete with a sense of entitlement and lack of motivation/work ethic/self-control re: practice or academics or "pharmaceuticals" could go out of their way to take down a coach either. With how NAU athletics operate (and I appreciate that they keep everyone's dirty laundry under wraps), there will never be any public revelations. Speculation and conjecture is all we have to go on.

    Apart from watching NAU hoops for years, I had just a few interactions with the man. I don't know him. But I do know his players played hard every game or didn't see court-time, generally stayed out of trouble, generally succeeded academically and his team was more often competitive against programs with bigger profiles/budgets/facilities than not. And NAU will have a hard time finding a new coach to replicate this.

    I can see your concern for a differing approach to motivational techniques. But if you think Shaka Smart or Brad Stevens are coming along to save the day for NAU hoops then I'm going to ask you to kindly pass the crack pipe.

    Go Jacks! Beat the Sundevils today.


  10. "Realistically, no single person or event could have gotten a Coach of 20 years removed unless he did something wrong."

    - ? You don't know anyone who's been fired for bogus reasons or office politics?

    I've had friends coaching at the high school level terminated for no reason at all other than not kissing someone's ass or giving undeserved play time to a kid.

    All the while, perennial rule-benders and snake oil salemen in college basketball like Bruce Pearl, Calipari, Calhoun, etc. continue to be revered for winning at all costs.

    I may not completely agree with you, Anonymous, but I'm happy someone else gives a squat about NAU hoops.

    (crawls off soap box now and proceeds with the day...)

    - MTJack

  11. Definitely no axe to grind. Could care less about Mr. Adras. But you blaming one individual is just plain crazy. It seems like you have the inside scope.

    Bottom line is he resigned to "pursue other opportunities". Let the overhaul begin!!

  12. This looks like one more stupid move of management by committee and ignorance of the real athletics world that has haunted NAU Athletics for years. Why in the world wouldn't you make a change at a better time of year?

    Recruiting will most surely be affected for years to come. A young unhappy team that talks to recruits will be a cancer that will take years to eradicate.

    I'm sure the truth won't come out for some time due to the contract Adras signed through 2012. This most certainly includes some sort of gag clause that would affect his ability to collect his paycheck he is guaranteed through then.

  13. Mr. Adras has been asked to leave to "pursue other opportunities".

    He's been dismissed for actions and behaviors that are not conducive to what our program is about," NAU should've said. "I wish him good luck, but he's not going to be a part of this (program) anymore."

    When you don't tell the're words often come back to bite you. It's called karma.

  14. Adras alienated many in Arizona high schools. He treated his players and his staff like dirt--that is the truth from the inside. This attitude affected recruiting in Arizona. There is more than enough talent for this level in Arizona, if you have a coach that treats players like men-- and was a good teacher of the game--he did not. This year's team lost a lot of players, to graduation, to injuries, to quitting because of Adras, and he had a hard time recruiting Arizona high schools after his attitude was known around the State.

  15. For all of the student-athletes that quit the program or were dismissed, there are many more that progressed through his program that went on to successful lives after life at NAU. Coach Adras' talents will be welcomed somewhere else.

  16. It's time for you all to read the Arizona Daily Sun tomorrow. I'm sure the article will be interesting as it will be based on facts.

    Also, for all the student athletes that were raised to do the right thing. Thank you.