Video: Mark Turgeon explains decision to take Maryland job

Theoretically, if you accept a new job at a top 20 men’s basketball program, you’d be kind of happy. Mark Turgeon, though, looks like someone just fed his puppy to a giant radioactive puppy-eating terrapin. I mean, dude’s heart is leaking sadness all over this video.

The thing starts with a questioner asking if Turgeon is going to tell everyone he’s staying at A&M; “Unfortunately I’m not,” the coach replies.

Unfortunately! Amazing.

Some more choice quotes, from the saddest “I just got a better job!” interview in the history of the world.

On taking the Maryland job: “It was just too good of an offer for me to pass on....It’s been a tough day. Been back and forth many times. I just feel like Maryland was a great opportunity for me and my family. Maryland’s got a great basketball tradition; they’re real similar [programs]. It’s a gut feeling.”

On wrestling with the decision: “It overwhelms you. Coaching searches aren’t fair to coaches, and they’re not fair to player, they/re not fair to families, the way you have to make a decision. Luckily I’ve been to their campus before many times. Haven’t seen the new arena, but I know a lot about everything there. I told the players, it’s the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make. Marriage was easy for me; I knew I was in love. Going to KU was easy; that’s where I always wanted to play college basketball. Going to Wichita State was easy, going to A&M was an easy choice. Today was one of the hardest choices I’ve had to make.”

On leaving A&M: The students have accepted me from day one here. I must have had I don’t know how many Facebooks from students today, just asking me to stay. It meant a lot to me....It had nothing to do with whether we had 5,000 [fans] or 13,000. It wasn’t about money, either, and you’ll see that when all that comes out. It was just a gut decision for me to try something.

On what makes Maryland a good job: Well, one, is where it’s located. I think it’s a fantastic place. Just the area alone. They have great tradition, won a national championship I believe seven years ago. And they’ve had a lot of great players, they’ve had first round draft picks, the first pick in the draft in John Lucas. Just a lot of tradition....We talk all the time about the hotbeds for high school basketball, and we talk about the Northeast a lot, and Florida and Texas and California are right there too, but that’s an area that has produced a lot of really good players.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.
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