We’ve seen it before – remember Bruce Pearl taking Wisconsin-Milwaukee to the Sweet 16 and parleying it into the head coaching job at Tennessee? A mid-major’s run in the big dance is something that puts its coach’s name front and center for a bigger school’s job opening.
Groce is in his 4th year at Ohio, where he has a 85-55 record. This is his second trip to the NCAA Tourney (2010). He is a Indiana/Ohio guy having grown up, gone to college, and coached in Indiana; then he coached at Xavier and Ohio State before taking the Ohio head coaching job in 2008.
There’s a precedence for bald-headed, middle-aged white guys coming to coach basketball in Mississippi from Ohio – Andy Kennedy. Eh, I’m not up for that, ha.
Chances are Groce would like the Illinois job, or to hold out for one in the midwest, but still, there’s a good chance Stricklin’s got an eye on him. So you might want to take a peak tonight when Ohio plays North Carolina.