Tuesday, April 27, 2021


Kim Mulkey Leaves Baylor


Why is Sailor Bear so grumpy? It has to be because legendary Baylor women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey is leaving Baylor for LSU after 21 years.

Mulkey and I got to Baylor at the same time, in 2000. It was the start of a grim decade for Baylor sports, with the lone exception of Mulkey's squad. She built a dynamite program that was always interesting.

I was a season ticket holder for the Lady Bears (as well as the, uh, Men Bears), and it was a fantastic show. 

There is a lot of speculation on why she made the move, but I suspect there were both pull and push factors. Pull factors towards LSU would include the fact that she is a native of the state of Louisiana, and her son Kramer had a strong career there as a baseball player. Of course, I'm sure they showed her a lot of love, too, as they should have in trying to right an athletic department that has had some significant bumps lately.

The push factors-- reasons to be away from Baylor rather that towards LSU-- are harder to discern. But I have some pretty good ideas why someone having a decent run of things might want to leave the joint. 

Baylor will probably attract a good replacement... but it is hard to replace a legend. And the first few years, especially if Mulkey's recruits follow her or transfer elsewhere, are going to be rough. 

I can't speak to the push factor, but the pull factor I feel sure is very strong. When I interviewed her back in 2012, after her second national championship, she expressed such love and longing for her home state of Louisiana.
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