Larry K

That Oregon game was a huge disappointment. Why? Because the Utes were in position to win, but, as has happened over 90% of the times a Larry K team has played an Altman team, they lost because Altman is a better coach.

Larry is 2-16 vs. Altman. 2 wins in 18 tries!

Two things that showed that Larry is just not very good at this:

  1. At the end of the first half, 10 seconds left, and 3 or 4 fouls to give. Plummer in the game, could have fouled three times and kept Oregon from even getting up a shot. Instead, Pritchard goes righ to the basket for a lightly contested layup. It’s only 2 points, but it’s also momentum for Oregon going into the half. And, all else equal, had the Utes not given up that 2 points, they’d have been down 1, with the ball and 30 seconds left at the end of the game instead of being down 3.

  2. Speaking of being down 3, Larry sold out for a three pointer on that last possession, which would have been fine if the play for Gach would have worked and he’d have gotten open. But he didn’t and the team had 3 pointer on their minds, so Timmy Allen - the world’s worst 3 point shooter - took the long, contested 3. Was that a case of the players being too dumb to realize that a quick 2 would also work, or was it a case of Larry and staff not mentioning that possiblility?

In the end, the Ducks outrebounded the Utes by a ton and the Utes missed 10 free throws (if you count the back half of the three one-and-ones they never gave themselves a chance at. You can point to those things. I’ll point to the lack of attention to detail by the coaching staff. If this was an isolated event, I’d say it was just one of those games where things didn’t go our way, but it’s not. This is, and has been, the rule, much more than the exception, for the last 9 years. Next year could be special, talent-wise, but don’t expect Larry to beat good coaches, even with lots of talent.

I do not disagree on your overall point. Clearly Altman has been the better coach than Larry, by far.

However, in the post game interview Larry mentioned that they had told players to foul (at the end of the first half). My opinion is that as these young players learn and grow they will listen to coaches more. Whether that can get Utah over the hump, who knows.

I think Utah fans are spoiled because Majerus was so good at in game adjustments that mere mortals will never measure up.


Saint Fatman of Maji also played in an arguably less talented league overall. But that is just my unpopular opinion. I think Larry did an excellent job of getting this very young team to keep the game very close against the number 4 team in the nation! On paper this team had no business even being in the game at all with the dearth of experience against a talented and more experienced squad.


Yep. K was getting on Plummer right as the half ended. You could tell he put Plummer in to foul, and Plummer didn’t execute.


I am willing to give Larry the benefit of the doubt because of this very inexperienced squad. Having said that, I must admit your point. After all these years the jury is still out on whether Larry can figure out what to do in those situations, or whether he can get his players to do what he wants them to do, whichever is the real problem. I like him and what he has done, and I am pulling for him to be successful. It’s just discouraging sometimes.


Oregon was on the back end of the worst road trip in the conference. Also, they are vastly overrated at this point. I’d say they are outside the top ten. I do agree that the team is doing well for how young they are.

One thing that isn’t arguable. Larry is 2-16 against Altman.

Yup! Stuff like that happens. Some coaches/programs just have your number. Majerus couldn’t ever beat Kentucky. Altman seems to have Larry’s number.

I see this as proof of my point. If he can’t get the player to do what he says, that’s perhaps worse than not being able to recognize a situation.

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Agreed - Majerus NEVER had a problem getting people to understand what he wanted. They sometimes failed to execute, but if they didn’t get the idea, or didn’t try, they didn’t see the floor again.

My favorite Majerus quote, responding to a reporter who asked him how he maintained such discipline over his players:

“The bench.”

That said, it does appear that Larry also uses the bench consistently, when players goof up.


Yep, some teams/coaches have other teams’/coaches’ numbers for whatever reason. There was a time when Majerus teams struggled to win at at Wyoming for crying out loud. Some very good Utah teams lost there in '95, '96, '98 (national runner-up year), 2000 (got blown out), 2001 and 2002.


That’s bad. What are the other coaches’ records vs Altman? Oregon has been so good over that time span. I guess most of the other coaches haven’t been around long enough for the record to be meaningful.

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I noticed that, too.

Plummer never got off the bench in the 2nd half after his 1st half snafu.

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Two things, 1) if you specifically put Plummer in to foul and specifically told him to foul, that seems like a classic case of ‘you had one job’, so how does he not do that? and
2) why the hell was Larry not losing his mind? I specifically rewatched that play twice because I was shocked that he wasn’t just screaming at him to foul. He just stood there casually, like it seemed like that was all according to plan

Something smells bad to me about this. I know he specifically called that out after in post game interviews, but his reaction at the time makes me feel like he is just throwing Plummer under the bus after the fact.

He was all over Plummer as the team walked off the court at halftime.


Plummer hasn’t seen the floor much period. To the point that my wife, who is not so knowledgeable as a fan, immediately said ‘Why is he in the game?’ I said ‘To foul.’ Then proceeded to scream foul, foul, foul, as Prittchard dribbled the length of the court and layed it up.

Probably explains the negative quotes from Plummer, he doesn’t like being coached.

Too little too late, he had the entire length of the floor to yell a reminder at him. Or did Larry forget too?