Victory for MSU...
Okay, I realize you are reading from the same blogger that just preached a sermon on why Tom Izzo was the right man for the MSU football job, but hear me out anyway. If you go back and read my posts at the start of and during the search, one name that never got a lot of play but was always in my top tier of candidates was Mark Dantonio. In a way, he is as close to Izzo as MSU was going to get without risking ridicule, question and disrespect.
This was a great hire. Is it sexy? No. Never was going to be. The only truly "sexy" names were Mariucci and Davis and neither of them apparently got that long a look from the folks at MSU. What it is is a safe, solid, sound hire. For the first time in my life, the powers that be at Michigan State University got it right. They talked to a boatload of people, a bevy of candidates, had a search committee and a group over-seeing that committee to make sure it was all done well and done right. It was and in the end, MSU earned a victory.
Time will tell if Dantonio can make MSU the contender and winning program it should be. But one thing is evident from the get-go - the guy is right for the job. From his on the field principles and beliefs to his off the field expectations, he has the entire package. There should be less meddling than in years. There is a true leader at the top, one who gets what it takes to field a winner. His resume is impressive, his demeanor impeccable, I have faith that it will translate to lasting success on the football field.
Final thoughts on the rest of the candidates... Pelini lacked the head coaching experience this team needed; Grantham the same; Baggett would have been a better fit seven years ago; Shurmur isn't ready yet; Kelly is a year or two away from being a hot candidate and MSU needs to get back to defense.
The process was long and arduous and not without the typical rumors running amok, but it was done as close to perfect as possible. And in the end, it all means a Victory for M-S-U!