If you feel like your basketball team is getting too good, like they are achieving too much, please read this how-to, where we discuss the two-month process of breaking down the team until there is nothing left. The perfecter of this is the MSU men’s basketball program, who has given us a blueprint for how to bring the program down to a much less desirable level.
Perhaps your school has reached a level of success that is a little too high. Maybe they are 15th in the country, 19-5, and coming of a beat down of their in-state rival (Feb. 10th). If so, they probably have two 1st-team all-conference players (Bost, Moultrie), a all-conference freshman team player (Hood), and another who was a Top 5 nationally rated player coming out of high school (Sidney). With that rate of success being too high, you will undoubtedly need to initiate ‘Operation: Zero Effort’ (Renardo Sidney sinister laugh in the background).
To begin the 60-day cleanse, start by losing at home to a team you have no business losing to (Georgia). Then, go on the road and get a big lead only to blow it and lose the game (LSU). After that, lose another road game that you have no business losing (Auburn). At this point, you’ll want to instruct your head coach (Stansbury) to start making a bunch of excuses so the fan base will be upset with him.
Next, give your fans a glimpse of hope while playing the eventual national champions (Kentucky) better than anyone for a half…but then fade going down the stretch and lose by 10. In the next game (Alabama), be sure to give absolutely no effort whatsoever…this will really outrage the fans. Be sure the head coach has plenty of excuses to tell the press.
This is also the point where you want the best player on the team to talk to reporters about how bad everyone on the team’s attitude is, and how he turns to his high school coach for guidance instead of the coach of the team he is actually on. Then, during the next game, against the worst team in the conference (South Carolina), play a close game which goes into overtime…and your team pulls away with a buzzer beater. This will allow for your fans to cling to their last bits of hope for the NCAA Tournament – keeping them interested.
In the final regular season game, obliterate the opponent (Arkansas), playing to your full potential. This will have most of the fan base believing once again…and thinking the 5 game losing streak was just a speed bump. (Another sinister Renardo Sidney laugh). But this is just a tease of course, you will instruct the team to give less than no effort as they lose to a mediocre team (Georgia) in the conference tournament.
Doing this will all but assure no entry into the NCAA Tourney. To make sure the team has no harmony, make sure there is no contact between the coach and players in the days leading up to Selection Sunday, and be sure the team doesn’t watch the show together. This will lead to a NIT bid, where they will surely give a half-effort and lose to a lesser school.
Now that the season is over, it will be time for the coach to leave the program. You can fire him, or he can retire, but either way will have the same effect. Once you do this, take a long as possible to find a replacement. It is important to be turned down as many times as possible before making a hire.
During the search process, you will have players defect from the program. One will quit (Deville Smith), one will enter the NBA draft (Arnett Moultrie), one will sign with an agent (Renardo Sidney) hoping to go pro.
Once you hire a coach (Rick Ray), make sure it is someone who no one has heard of so the fan’s won’t be excited about it. Then, during the introductory press conference, have the new coach mention the best player on the team (Rodney Hood), because, of course, he will transfer a week later. For good measure, make sure a couple of walk-ons (Reed Clayton, Charles Parker) quit the team so that everyone knows your 60 day plan is complete.
(Please direct all ‘don’t be so negative’ comments to @dirty_panda)