FC Dallas to hire Hyndman as head coach

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FC Dallas is set to name SMU head coach Schellas Hyndman as its new head coach and will announce the signing later this week, sources told SBI on Tuesday. The decision comes two weeks after FC Dallas fired former coach Steve Morrow.

No word on whether Hyndman will also be given the position of technical director, as Buzz Carrick at 3rd Degree reported two weeks ago.

Here is my take on Hyndman’s hire. My opinion hasn’t changed. I think it’s a terrible decision. There were some very good candidates out there, including Dave Sarachan and Oscar Pareja, but it seems as if the decision was ultimately made by FC Dallas owner Clark Hunt, who played for Hyndman at SMU.

What do you think of FC Dallas hiring Hyndman? Great move? Dumb move? Share your thoughts below.

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35 Responses to FC Dallas to hire Hyndman as head coach

  1. Ilya says:

    Strange. Texans like Clint Dempsey and Shea Salinas were probably his to bring to SMU, but he passed. And how many great MNT or even MLS players did he help develop? But at least he looks a bit like Ottmar Hitzfeld.

  2. McGinty says:

    I’m not usually one for race-based decisions, but would it have hurt Dallas to go with Oscar Pareja? They have faced criticism for not looking at Latin coaches in the past, and Pareja isn’t a total greenhorn.

    Knowing the Hunt family’s proclivity for making hires based on personal connections (or even flat crony-ism), I don’t think you can consider the Hyndman hire as any sort of shocker.

  3. Steve says:

    A couple thoughts from an FCD fan:

    – If he’s being hired as TD as well, I hope the plan is to cut him down to one position at the end of the season and find someone well-qualified with professional experience to fill it.

    – No way Hitchcock lasts past this year as GM, if the owners are going over his head to hire a coach.

    – How can the fanbase best go about begging Mark Cuban to buy the team (maybe teaming with Nowitzki and Nash to do so)? What FCD needs most is new ownership.

  4. Tony in Quakeland says:

    I can’t wait until the first game when he tries to send in six subs at the quarter break….

  5. Erik Abarca says:

    Ives, Jay-Jay Okocha leaves Hull City. I know in the past there was intrest from MLS and Jay-Jay, you see that as an option still? Thanks

  6. BellusLudas says:

    Not good…better candidates available…short tenure then we get Oscar.

  7. Eugene says:

    Not sure why Dave Sarachan would be better considering how atrocious he was at Chicago before he got fired.

    Why not give the guy a chance? Its good to see some new blood get the call, especially a local guy.

  8. SayervilleFC says:

    Other than having coached the owner in college, I don’t think Schellas is a great choice.

    He’s coached in one of the best soccer hotbeds in America, had Texas all to himself (no other D-I programs in the state) and still lost a lot of the top talent, failed to make an NCAA final (and only made 2 Final Fours) and hasn’t really produced many international caliber players.

    That, and he once ragged on Kenny Cooper for blowing off SMU at the last minute when the ManU offer came.

    Just seems like a perpetually average MLS team has hired a perpetually above average, but not great, college coach.

    There are much better college coaches out there. Bobby Clark, Dave Masur, Jay Vidovich, Sasho Cirovski. I have no idea if they would have given up their security of college soccer where top coaches never get fired, but they’re all more qualified for MLS than Hyndmann is.

  9. JH says:

    Yep, this is a bad decision, especially considering the other possible candidates. While there was nobody with Bruce Arena’s resume, both Oscar Pareja and Dave Sarachan at least have experience playing and/or coaching at the professional level, and in this league.

    While the Hunt family has a done a lot of amazing things for Dallas-area soccer (moreso when Lamar was alive), this is just one in a long line of bad decisions by the Hunt family with regard to FC Dallas.

    Also, I hate that Steve brought up Mark Cuban’s name, because it only means I’ll waste another hour at the office day-dreaming of that being a possibility and the fortune it would definitely bring to FCD.

  10. Daniel says:

    Was there ever any ground to Eric Wynalda for head coach?

    I saw that in a few places, but never anything that was serious.

    It did make me curious though.

  11. FC Uptown says:

    Dreadful, horrible, abysmal, tragic, heinous decision…..

  12. kco says:

    That’s why I’m proud to be Hunt Free in KC!

  13. JD says:

    If you want a first timer, think of the Dwight Lodeweges, Pako Ayestaran, Boro Primorac’s of the world. Guys who’ve shown as first team coaches that they can bring the best out of top players.

    If you want International retreads, go for Jose Pekerman, Bora Milutinović, Hugo Sanchez, Bruce Arena, Craig Brown, etc.

    If you want club retreads, look to England’s second division. The League Championship is almost entirely staffed with club retreads that just get fired and hired every couple of years.

    Frankly, I laughed out loud when I saw Ives preferences…

    To scoff at Hyndman for not being a professional manager, and then suggest Oscar Pareja is just funny. Pareja has never been a manager at any level. He was so awesome as an U17 assistant that we won 1 and lost 3 at the U17 World Cup (with a 4-3 win over Tajikistan – yes that’s a country).

    Dave Sarachan is respected as an assistant coach, but has failed as a manager – just ask his players on both levels. Maybe he can be brought in as an assistant to help with the tactical portion of the work.

  14. KingSnake says:

    There is more than one Dwight Lodewege and Boro Primorac?

  15. Bryan says:

    “Pareja has never been a manager at any level. He was so awesome as an U17 assistant that we won 1 and lost 3 at the U17 World Cup (with a 4-3 win over Tajikistan – yes that’s a country).”

    Pareja was not a U17 coach for that world cup. He did not take the assistant job until Hackworth was fired.

  16. walter says:

    I think they should have gone with John Spencer. He will be a great coach once someone gives him a chance (other than Chicago, I mean).

  17. JD says:

    “Pareja was not a U17 coach for that world cup.”

    …you’re right, he’s even less qualified than previously thought.

  18. aristotle says:

    I thought they were going to hire yet another boring and incompetent English coach, but apparently they want to go even further backwards. Oscar Pareja has got to be better than any of the candidates mentioned. Even if he isn’t, he can’t be any worse, and I doubt he would coach the team as conservatively as the others which might at least increase the entertainment value!

    No wonder Dallas doesn’t have any fans in their new stadium. One fool after another. I agree with Steve, the ownership needs to change. Clueless.

  19. northzax says:

    college coaches almost never work at the professional level, in any sport. Especially once the league is established, with professional players. The whole thing about being in Texas and never winning is irrelevant, recruiting 18 year olds with other options is not an MLS skill set. But still. Can anyone name the last big-college coach to be successful in a us pro league? Anyone?

    Beuller?

  20. Ross says:

    Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer. Both in Dallas.

  21. franco says:

    How long ago was that Ross? And please tell us how did Switzers tenure go. IIRC he won his one SB with Jimmy’s players who were peaking at the right time. Not every college coach is a Jimmy Johnson.

    Bad hire by FCD.

  22. Ross says:

    Bruce Arena. Bob Bradley. Sigi Schmid.

  23. NewFoundMadness says:

    I would have to be mad to continue to support this team. HSG may have saved this team from being shut down a few years back, but they are in the process of putting it back in that same position based on fan following, even though they have a nice stadium.

    Sarachan may have been a better choice from the supposed “short list”, but didn’t excite me at all. Oscar is still too green, but will hopefully be on the next owner’s (here’s to the dreamers) wish list in 3 years.

    Hugo Sanchez would have been a better choice, but that too would have had its own perils.

  24. PonyFan says:

    On the contrary, this is a great hire. Yes, I’m biased, as a longtime SMU fan, and for the sake of the school, I hope this rumor – like so many others in years past – is wrong.

    Coach Hyndman is a brilliant coach. He has been offered other college and professional jobs before, and turned them down to remain at SMU, and he was hired to teach a course in Europe that professional coaches over there are required to attend – within the coaching ranks, has the second-most victories among active coaches, and ranks No. 12 all-time in NCAA history. He has had some bad luck (i.e. injuries to key players in seasons when the Mustangs had a legit shot at national titles), but he consistently has put one of the best teams in the nation out there.

    To suggest that he’ll be cheap is inaccurate. He has multiple sources of income (coaching salary, camps and he’s one of the world’s premier martial arts instructors), and he also is a good businessman. I seriously doubt he’d accept a less-than-market deal to give up a position at a school where he has more wins than any coach in the history of any sport and he is held in the highest regard both personally and professionally.

    His reputation as a stellar coach is well-deserved, and FC Dallas would be right to have a strong interest in him, regardless of his relationship with Clark Hunt and his family. Personally, I hope FCD chooses someone else, because he has a great shot to win the national championship in 2008.

  25. PonyFan says:

    And, for the record, I believe the story here – that he will be hired – is jumping the gun a bit. He might well end up with FCD, and if he does, he’ll do a great job. But he’s in Europe now watching the European championships, and from what I’ve been told by people who know him, no offer was made before he left. Maybe it’s safe to say he will be offered one or both FCD jobs, but to suggest any agreement has been reached, I believe, is premature.

  26. Doug says:

    I get the knock on Hyndman as an unknown – unproven at the professional level.

    But saying that clearly Sarachan and Pareja are better choices is just dumb. What head coaching experience does Pareja have? Zero. Yes, he has the confidence of Toja and probably a few other players, but that could be a negative as much as it could be a positive.

    And in Chicago, they called him Saracan’t.

    What this team needs is someone who can motivate. We don’t know if Shellas or Pareja can motivate, but I don’t think you can clearly say that Sarachan has that ability.

    What this team really needs is John Spencer or someone like him – a former MLS player who has learned at the feet of a quality MLS coach and has the personality to motivate. Oscar might be that guy, but Dave sure as hell isn’t. Shellas could be under the right circumstances. We just don’t know if now happens to be the right circumstances.

  27. PonyFan says:

    So a former MLS player (Spencer) who has played for great coaches would be a better hire than a guy with more than 700 games of coaching experience, and a guy who has worked WITH great coaches and even taught some of them?

    Maybe one would be better than the other, or maybe they’d both be great, or maybe they’d both struggle …. but I’m a little leery of the logic that Spencer would be better because he played for “a quality MLS coach.”

  28. Jonny says:

    Pony Fan=Clark Hunt

  29. SonicDeathMonkey says:

    JD, you may be right about Pareja, but he does at least have MLS experience, while Hyndman has none.

  30. PonyFan says:

    Re: Jonny’s comment “Pony Fan=Clark Hunt”

    HA – good thought. But I’ve never met the man. Met his dad once at a football game … does that count?

  31. NYCWatcher says:

    Not a terrible decision to go outside of MLS to hire a coach… Terrible decision to hire this coach though! There are definitely better choices in college soccer, who have actually produced great MLS players. Hyndman has not produced many, if any great MLS players, and he’s a terrible recruiter so I question his ability to develop young players, and to command respect from international players. My prediction if they do hire Hyndman… is that they will be hiring someone to coach in 2009 come November when they are knocked out of yet another MLS Cup Playoffs by Colorado or Houston.

  32. jayslick says:

    any1 ever think that the reason he had trouble recruiting awesome talentb/c it is SMU and SMU is impossible to get into and they dont drop the requirements for athletes?

    i dont think dempsey could get into SMU is schelles wanted him to come anyway and he just developed his grandson into a talent good enough for newcastle to poach him at less than 14 years old and the kid be compared to a young rooney.

    the guy can develop talent, now that he has to go find it in other countries it will be interesting to see what his connections are, it will be interesting what he can pull off in bringing in guys when he doesnt have to coax a 1200 sat outof their ass.

  33. Big Will says:

    Terrible hire!!!

    Living here in the Dallas area and being in the soccer scene here I know that this will not lead to any championships. Hyndman is the guy who gets the team on the brink, but cannot get over the hump. His SMU teams flame out of the NCAA tournament year after year.

  34. Prawn says:

    “This team sucks.” -Mike Rhyner

  35. Hwnftbalr says:

    Now — can anyone offer up a guess about who will replace Hyndman at SMU? Will they look on the staff, locally (Dallas Texans FC), or do a national search?