For Immediate Release: America has hired its newest Coach after a multi-year, exhaustive search to fill the prized position.
Over the course of its 200+ year history, America has been on a roller coaster ride as a team on the world stage. They’ve endured the highest of highs, while also navigating the lowest of lows. There have been 45 coaches in the team’s history, each of whom has had successes and failures that have defined both their own legacies and the history of the team. Through it all, they have managed to remain in the “first world” despite almost constant dissent within the ranks. Much of that is thanks to the leadership displayed by its coaches and their administrative staff, as well as an ownership group that, these days, is roughly 328 million strong. Recent performance has many of those owners concerned.
The Coaching Search
Heading into November of 2016, the team was hard at work on signing a new coach. With the existing contract up, a change in leadership was required. Many were happy with recent results and hoped to expand on them. Some others had grown tired of the gridlock in the locker room and wanted someone to shake things up. After what seemed like an eternity of interviewing candidates all over the country, we went “outside the box” for a new coach to take the wheel and guide Team USA into the future.
The Wrong Direction
It didn’t take long for the team to discover that the latest coach’s first 4 year contract would be filled with controversy. Even before he signed on the dotted line there was concern about his ability to keep Team USA in the top tier of global standing. Indeed, some other teams around the world had begun to doubt Team USA in ways they hadn’t before.
Midway through his tenure, with mixed results, ownership decided to mix things up a bit. The balance of power of those surrounding the coach was given a jolt. Some hoped that this might help right the ship, steering it clear of a potentially calamitous end. Instead, it only seemed to further fragment an already strained relationship. He was given a public reprimand but allowed to continue on in his position, despite growing calls for his termination.
The Tipping Point
In recent years, Team USA has seemed destined for contentious contract negotiations. There was a time when the team was regarded as a gold standard in the “first world”. As the seasons wore on, the team seemed to be in free fall. Much of the world began to shy away from a USA that was becoming more and more isolated. They seemed to only be worried about themselves. It felt like there was little concern about the impact their performance was having on the rest of the league. A lot of owners were fed up with the man in charge, while many others were all for him. The two camps seemed to get more and more entrenched as the season wore on, and fatigue was taking hold.
As the calendar turned to 2020, the team had a decision to make. Would they stick with their current coach and extend his contract? Would they fire him and bring in some new blood to get the team back on track? Plenty of other coaches applied for an interview, but only one candidate managed to get his foot in the door. A wily veteran, he was considered the best option should ownership decide to go another way. The campaigning was relentless as both coaches began making their cases.
By the summer of 2020, the season had pretty much gone off the rails. The team was confronting multiple crises on different fronts and looking to its coach for guidance, courage, and leadership. Instead, it got indifference, deflection, denial, and retreat. Come November of 2020, the decision was made. The coaching carousel spun once again and a new coach was hired.
Turning the Page
The offseason between November and January proved to be a tumultuous time for Team USA. Some of the darkest days of its storied history left the team bruised and battered. There was genuine concern about the state of the team itself. Thankfully, as we have so many times before, we persevered. Yesterday our new hire was signed to a 4 year contract. Ownership has placed its faith in his hands. He is currently filling the remaining positions in his staff. They will help guide the team forward. There are still plenty of disgruntled people at all levels of the organization, as always. But there’s also hope that our new Coach will use this time to build a better, more unified Team USA. Good luck, Coach – this owner’s got your back.
- / 1 year ago
To me, Rachel Nichols is the personification of posting a black square on Instagram.