Fans: Patience is virtue for new coaches


Former football coach Bill Snyder’s last game with the Wildcats was Nov. 19, 2005, the outcome of which was a victory against Missouri. About a month earlier, K-State topped Kansas in Manhattan, 12-3. Snyder accomplished these necessary wins in his last season, but coach Ron Prince was never able to in his three seasons with the Wildcats.
The Prince era is coming to an end and many fans are anxious for a change. He is 16-19 during his tenure, and for some that record is unacceptable. However, instant dominance doesn’t happen, especially in the Big 12 Conference.
While Snyder put K-State football on the map, he didn’t find instant success either. He won only 13 games in his first three seasons and lost 20 games in the same span. Compared to Snyder, Prince has done a respectable job.
The university showed patience with Snyder and eventually the football program became one of the elite programs in college football. Unfortunately, this time K-State did not show Prince the same patience Snyder enjoyed. So let this be a reminder to fans when a new coach arrives: Patience is a virtue.
KU hired Mark Mangino in 2002, and his first couple years were similar to Prince’s: a 12-24 record, one bowl game (a loss), and continuous mediocrity.
But KU showed patience, fought the urge to play musical coaches and relied on consistency instead of a fresh face. The decision paid off, and while KU is not yet a top-tier Big 12 team, its program has come a long way.
K-State fans need to remember this tale when celebrating the hiring of a new  football coach — and if the men’s basketball team starts to struggle. Two or three years just isn’t enough time for a coach, in any sport, to put together a legitimate contender.
The Kansas City Chiefs are one of the worst teams in the NFL this season, and there have been cries to fire coach Herm Edwards.
So far, at least, the organization has decided to give Edwards a chance to produce a winner, even if it means waiting for a couple years.
If he succeeds, more schools and teams might understand that coaching takes time and sometimes waiting is the best way to support your team. If Edwards fails, fans will continue to think that winning is easy and the only requirement is a superstar coach or player.
It would have been interesting to see what Prince could have done with a few more seasons, but we will never know. No big accomplishment is achieved instantly: Rome wasn’t built in a day and it took God six days to make everything that ever was, is or will be.
Let’s show our new coach some Midwestern hospitality and let him know we want to win as well as improve. And we know this will not be easy.

Owen Kennedy is a senior in business management. Please send comments to