If someone at the College of Charleston considered the Bobby Cremins/Anthony Johnson tandem concept a trial balloon, hopefully the loud pop is still echoing throughout campus.
Just when you think a school infamous for screwing up basketball head coach searches is about to get it right, along comes more silliness.
The Post and Courier and other news outlets reported that Cremins, 67, has been discussed as a candidate to serve as College of Charleston head coach for one season - with former Cougars point guard Anthony Johnson simultaneously hired to take over after working under Cremins for a year.
Or maybe this is just a prank new College of Charleston President Glenn McConnell pulled on students settling in for the fall semester.
Cremins is one of the great personalities in college basketball history. The popular former South Carolina Gamecocks player did wonders leading Georgia Tech to three ACC championships and a Final Four. He helped draw fans to TD Arena after his Charleston arrival in 2006 and for most of his five-plus seasons on the job.
But he didn't get the Cougars to the NCAA Tournament, made the NIT only once and left during the 2011-2012 season for health reasons.
While College of Charleston search committee members are sworn to silence, you would think an exception might be in order to calm the fears of frenzied fans.
You know, something like: "Bobby Cremins is not a candidate but he still has really cool hair."
Otherwise, the committee deserves praise for putting together a nice list of finalists in an effort to replace Doug Wojcik, fired on Aug. 5.
Ritchie McKay, a Virginia assistant coach, is a fine man. He has been a head coach at Portland State, Colorado State, Oregon State, New Mexico and Liberty.
Earl Grant, a Clemson assistant coach and North Charleston native, will make a good head coach someday.
Mike Young, the Wofford head coach, is as classy and accomplished (three NCAA Tournament bids in the last five years) as they come.
And North Charleston's Johnson, a New Orleans Pelicans scout with 13 years of NBA playing experience, is a custom-order candidate.
He is 39 years old.
He doesn't need his hand held.
Agony and healing
It's not Cremins' fault; likely he is too nice to reject overtures from a committee member or too convinced he is the man to save the day.
Removing Cremins' name quickly is necessary to avoid media shots that are already hitting the school.
"Let's not forget: Bobby Cremins stepped away due to health reasons and is 67 now," ESPN's Jeff Goodman tweeted. "Really nice guy - but had rep of being lazy towards end."
Venerable analyst Dick Vitale disagrees.
"Hoping Bobby Cremins gets the coaching job at Charleston," Dicky V tweeted.
The College of Charleston - the program, players and fans - needs a positive boost. Wojcik was dismissed after a messy month that followed The Post and Courier's publication of the school's 50-page report accusing the former coach of too much boorish behavior. The College of Charleston's unwise decision to pursue a "cause" firing after first getting Wojcik to agree to a suspension only extends the agony.
Johnson remains a good way to help the Cougars heal, and eventually win.
Follow Gene Sapakoff on Twitter @sapakoff
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