Ray Mears/ Bruce Pearl

#1

Business

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#1
I've only heard of Ray Mears but recently I've been hearing many comparisons of him to Bruce Pearl.

Is there anyone here old enough or just know why those two are compared other than their knack for winning?

Feel free to get nostalgic and long winded because I'm real interested.
 
#3

dobre_shunka

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#3
Ray Mears was a great promoter like Pearl. He coined the phrase "Big Orange Country". He had the players run through a big wooden orange power T during player introductions. And during pregame warmups, one player would ride around the court on a unicycle.
 
#5

Bobby Dodd

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#5
Ray Mears was a great promoter like Pearl. He coined the phrase "Big Orange Country". He had the players run through a big wooden orange power T during player introductions. And during pregame warmups, one player would ride around the court on a unicycle.
These things prompted Mears to be known as, "The Barnum of Basketball" and the "Wizard of Orange."

Mears was great, and Pearl even looks like Mears in Mears' early years.
 
#8

Bobby Dodd

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#8
Gotta wonder what UT hoops would be like today if he hadn't had to retire because of his health.
I'm not sure it would have changed too much. DeVoe kept the Mears era success alive for the early years of his tenure, and Mears never did well in the NCAA tournament, although in today's tournament set-up, some of his teams would have done really well.

I can't see much changing in the course of UT Basketball history if Mears had stayed another 10 years or so. We wouldn't have become a national power, just a strong SEC school with an occasional NCAA run.
 
#9

dobre_shunka

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#9
Mears was dynamic, never had a losing season, and finished with a .713 record. Devoe was as exciting a dry white toast, had a few losing seasons, and finished with a .595 record. Beyond their differences in winning, Mears would have kept the excitement and interest alive in UT basketball.

Would UT be an annual national power if Mears had stayed? No, but the wasteland of the late 80's and on would likely have not happened.
 
#10

rockydoc

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#10
Mears was the coach when I was in school. He had charisma and the Vandy fans used to throw oranges at him. Unfortunately at that time there was only 16 teams in the NCAA tourney and Kentucky usually was the SEC representive.

He was able to convert from a slow-down game to a fast pace game when Ernie and Bernie came to UT. Unfortunately he had Bipolar manic-depressive disorder and the treatment wasn"t as good then.

The comparison to Pearl is a good one. Unfortunately for us Bruce, will eventually piss off all of the other staid and dull SEC coaches and get run off in a few years, I predict!
 
#12

hatvol96

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#12
Mears was the coach when I was in school. He had charisma and the Vandy fans used to throw oranges at him. Unfortunately at that time there was only 16 teams in the NCAA tourney and Kentucky usually was the SEC representive.

He was able to convert from a slow-down game to a fast pace game when Ernie and Bernie came to UT. Unfortunately he had Bipolar manic-depressive disorder and the treatment wasn"t as good then.

The comparison to Pearl is a good one. Unfortunately for us Bruce,
will eventually piss off all of the other staid and dull SEC coaches and get run off in a few years, I predict!
Last time I checked, John Brady and Tubby Smith do not have any decision making power at UT. If irritating opponents could get one run out of the league, Steve Spurrier would not have lasted a full season. Neither would Rick Stansbury.
 
#16

mcompton

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#16
If Bernard King hadn't kept trying to steal tv's out of TBA, Mear's would've stayed longer. Trying to keep King out of trouble drove him nuts...
 

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