Steven Bisig-USA TODAY Sports
With so much turnover the last few years, the Runnin' Utes can't really afford any other position.
I don't know if Larry Krystkowiak is the right guy for the job. The fact is, neither do any of you. No one knows because there just hasn't been enough evidence to suggest he's going to turn this program around. Sure, you can point to a few key moments in a few games over the last few months that might indicate he's the right coach to turn things around ... but there seems to be just as many moments, if not more, that suggest he isn't.
Ultimately, only time will vindicate or condemn him. Until that moment, sadly, we're forced to wait this out in an uncertain reality that very well could lead us down the same path we've witnessed in the past with Ray Giacoletti and Jim Boylen.
Don't get me wrong - I want Krystkowiak to continue being the option and I hope it does pan out. But there is confidence rooted in results and pretty much only blind faith. Right now, I hate to say it, we're straddling closer and closer to blind faith.
So, we're stuck in limbo. There is not going to be a coaching change, regardless of how few games Utah wins the remainder of the season (get that idea out of your head right this instant), but there is the real possibility this team does nothing of consequence the next couple months that leads anyone to believe they'll be just good enough in 2013-14. Which means, we have to wait for this to play out - either Krystkowiak succeeding or, unfortunately, failing.
Let's be honest, this is not a fun place to be in as a fan. Because the hole is so deep, and Utah basketball ravaged so badly by turnovers the last few years, any abrupt change is out of the question. We can't even speculate on potential coaching hires because they're not going to happen ... at least not this year and probably not next year, either. On the opposite side, can anyone point to a victory that is proof enough this program is heading in the right direction? No close losses, no moral wins, no we seemed good a month ago BS - actual, concrete results.
Outside the Washington game, I'm stumped.
Yeah, the case can be made this team is improved over last year's ... but is that really a selling point on the direction of the program? That's like stumbling over your feet, falling forward and proclaiming progress because you moved an inch.
And that's why we're stuck not knowing what to make of this team. Are they really moving in the right direction or is it like when your car is stuck in snow and it keeps rocking back and forth, which I guess is movement, but you're really not going anywhere because the wheels are just spinnin'?
I don't know. This season, much like last year, is looking like another throwaway year for the program. Unless there is some rebound in these next few weeks, which I guess is always possible, Utah will once again be picked to finish dead last in the PAC in the preseason polls and we'll have to once again try to claw our way out of a hole.
Maybe next year will be better. Maybe it won't. But our state of perpetual limbo is certainly going to end. It has to. Krystkowiak is either going to get it turned around or he won't. He'll either prove his worth or he won't be worth our time. If this season is yet another mulligan, as it appears to be, next year is for real. It needs to count. There has to be more than just minimal progress.
But until that point, I guess we can only grin and bear it.
I mean, what else is there to do?