So a lot of people have been asking me what I think about this whole James Franklin situation. I guess cause they know I am a die-hard Vandy fan and have been for many years. In my 30 short years on this earth, I have attended LOTS of football games and men’s basketball games and love every minute of it! Even through the good times and the bad, I have stayed until the very end for each game. Whether we are up by 10 or down by 40. You can all thank my dad, Tim Gill, for that!
So when I say this is not a BAD time for Vanderbilt University, I mean it! As a matter of fact, it’s been kind of fun to watch the last few days events unfold. Granted, I, like many other fans, wanted Coach Franklin to stay, but pretty much knew by Thursday of this week that we needed to start looking for a new head coach, and to be quite honest, I don’t blame Coach Franklin at all for leaving for Penn State! As a matter of fact, if I was in his shoes, I would have done the same thing. Not go to Penn State obviously (too cold), but I would go where my heart led me, and that is EXACTLY what he is doing. He is taking his dream job, and if someone offered me my dream job, I’d be out the door too. I’m lucky enough to be within in driving distance of my family and most of my friends. Coach Franklin and family not so much in Nashville, but more so at PSU!
So to all those out there that think he has ‘just left us’ or that he ‘used Vandy’ (puh-leaze), think real quick for a minute about what kind of decision you would make if faced with something similar, and I guarantee many of us have been faced with these types of decisions.
At the end of the day, coaching football is someone’s job. Much like the jobs I have had the pleasure of working in, including the world of sports, non-profit, and now healthcare. I was once told by a professor in Grad School that you get your first job, to get your second, to get your third, to then get your fourth, so forth and so on. I firmly believe that this is true for most everyone! More than likely your first job was a stepping stone to your second, or your experience at your third job helped you land your fourth! This is true for folks like James Franklin as well!
Time will tell what effect, if any, it has on Vanderbilt, and time will tell if PSU can be successful under Franklin. But no one can tell him today that he made the wrong choice. No one!
Coach Franklin never promised or said that he would be at Vandy for X-amount of years. He came in, a relative unknown to most, and turned around a football problem that was long overdue for a decent-season. And guess what? He had a few better-than-decent seasons. He didn’t do this on his own. He had plenty of help. Personnel, assistant coaches, and others at the University (who were there long before Franklin) helped to shape a program into a bowl-eligible and SUPER fun team to watch the last three years, and I thank him for lighting that fire and getting folks like myself amped up!
So fear not Vandy fans. This is not the end but rather the beginning. I didn’t start going to Vandy game 20-ish years ago because we had a “winning” football program. My dad took me to games, and I continue to go with him to this day, because it’s all about cheering for a team you love. Through thick and thin, good or bad!
Go Dores-ANCHOR DOWN!